>Husband and I had a 6 AM flight back to New York this morning, so we rose at 3:40 to get ready to leave. (Incidentally, my dad rose at 3:30 so he could drive us, although we repeatedly offered to call a cab. That's the kind of person he is. Thanks, Dad!) We got a few hours of sleep since we departed from the wedding we came to Chicago to attend around 10 pm. (As for the wedding, we had a blast.)

The point is, by the time I got into LaGuardia, I was on the verge of turning into Crankypants McBitch. I waited 20 minutes for the public bus to Manhattan, as did an increasingly large crowd of travelers eager to get into town for a mere $2. When the first bus arrived, it was already full from the previous terminals. A few minutes later, a mostly empty second bus was swarmed. I decided to take a different bus through Queens to the subway.

Of course, as soon as I boarded, I regretted my decision. I forgot how many local stops are on that route, plus it seemed that hordes of direct buses were descending on the airport, ready for a return trip to Manhattan. Bah! I seethed at my stupidity, glaring at each of the 9,000 or so people who got on and off the bus at every other fucking corner.

Then a funny thing happened. I noticed how diverse the bus's riders were. As we drove through Queens toward Jackson Heights, old Italian men, young Ecuadorian women, a middle-aged Indian couple, and countless other individuals of various ethnic groups joined me on a quiet bus ride. We passed restaurants selling all types of cuisine, shops with saris, and Asian grocery stores. I stared out the window at the teeming masses of humanity peacefully sharing the sidewalks.

Soon, I felt really good. I'm so lucky to live in New York. It's a city where we welcome people from all over the world, ride buses and subways together, and break bread next to one another. How could I be pissy? I relaxed, and three subways (shortcuts, I swear) and 30 minutes later, I was home petting my rabbit, who is adopted from upstate New York.

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