The Cavalier Daily
Serving the University Community Since 1890

Dangers of being

It is Wednesday night - or should I say Thursday morning - around 1:30 a.m. I emerge from an empty classroom in Bryan Hall where I had sequestered myself for upwards of six hours studying for a symbolic logic exam. All I want to do is get home and get home quickly, but I did not drive because I did not want to pay for parking at the Central Grounds Garage. I look for a bus, trolley - anything to get me to my warm apartment. But it is well past 1 a.m. and everything has stopped running. I search for other options.

I rack my tired brain: "What was that number the University told us to call when we were stranded - the one told to us right after my resident advisor gave us that ridiculous whistle that I promptly lost? Oh that's right; call SafeRide!" After doing a quick Google search, I had the hours and the number. And it should not be that hard to get a ride from SafeRide on a Wednesday, right? I am a day ahead of thirsty Thursday traffic and two days ahead of the weekend.

Boy was I wrong. The first time I called, I was promptly and unceremoniously disconnected without warning. I tried again. After I was greeted by a clearly apathetic switchboard operator, we had a ten-minute argument about which bus stop I was nearest. Was it Cabell Hall? Did I mean New Cabell Hall or Old Cabell Hall? Do you mean the stop in the back of Cabell Hall across from Student Health or the one in front of Cabell Hall? There is no bus stop in front of either Cabell Hall; does that mean you are referring to the Newcomb Hall bus stop?

I am assured the van will be there "shortly," whatever that means. Ten minutes pass, then fifteen. I am still in the complete darkness, hunched against the cold, hoping no one tries to randomly feel me up and flee when I see the SafeRide van! My excitement is quickly crushed by the fact that the van is going the wrong way and the driver does not even glance at me as I jump up and down, waving frantically. "It's OK," I say to myself. "They are only trying to turn around and will I will be on my way home soon." Erroneous. After another 10 minutes of waiting, I call the SafeRide number again to vent my frustrations.

A busy signal. Of course the line would be busy. "That is just perfect," I think to myself as I prepare to make the trek up Jefferson Park Avenue to my apartment, completely aware the whole time I have to be the easiest target: a female walking alone at close to 3 a.m. It took me all of 10 minutes to walk home (I made it without incident for those wondering) and an hour and a half to decide that SafeRide does not live up to its name.