Rating Lancs bus stops based on how they can be romanticised

How well can you make yourself the main character?

When you wait for the bus everyone asks themselves “am I being watched?”, “who is watching me?”, “where is my bus?” These thoughts are prominent, but what’s more important is you in the moment of your one-person show: the main character travelling somewhere unknown to us, your audience. This is a definitive guide of some of the best and worst bus stops in Lancs to live your main character fantasy.

The Underpass: 7/10

Starting with a strong one here, I’ll set the scene. You walk down the stairs, listening to music. A few people pass you on the steps thinking “wow, they’re so cool!” You’re unaware. You make it to the bottom and take a deep breath to walk through, you look left and right to see which buses are there. From here the possibilities are endless. Do you stand against the wall, take a seat, lean, go on your phone, tuck your hair behind your ear and step towards the 1A?

You are the main character here, everyone is watching which bus you choose, maybe someone gets on this bus just to be around you longer, even though it’ll take them ten minutes longer to get home. The biggest downside is the variability of busyness at the underpass, sometimes it’s heaving, sometimes it’s you and another person. Are you truly quirky if no one saw you? Plus, in rush hour, this is a popular spot for the main character, but what if someone else thinks they are the main character? You have competition. Will you win? Unreliability and inconsistency lose the underpass some vital points.

Sports centre: 7/10

You’re so close to the uni can you not just work down to it? OR walk to the underpass for the way home? The bold and brave nature you have to use this stop sets you apart from the others. The likelihood is, you’re also sporty. How have you dressed the sporty outfit when waiting for the bus to take you home? How do you look on the way down the steps to jump off and walk away. And yes, everyone is watching you walk away to be productive.

The issue here is that if someone’s in a rush, they don’t admire you, they hate you, why have you stopped the bus when they were so close to their destination? Likewise for the other way. You gain attention, but is it positive? Are you not a compassionate main character who is self-aware of everyone else? Polarising actions lead to polarising responses, which knocks the sports centre down.

Infirmary: 6/10

A popular and bold choice, you clearly have intentions using this bus stop. Mystery surrounds the infirmary. If you walk towards town, why not just stay on the bus? If you go towards the infirmary, what’s wrong with you? If you’re crossing the road, where are you going?

This is a stop for main characters with a purpose, you leaving this early has questions, and joining here only adds more. A spot for mystery. Traffic is your enemy here. When you’re on the bus or getting off, the stationary aspect ruins the persona around you, people move on, or they can watch and simply see what you do. It’s a place of timings. But don’t count out the factors of waiting here, on the main road, the perfect time to make eye contact with someone going past and be on their mind for the rest of the day. Truly a powerful stop that is threatened by its location. If only all movements we’re momentary here.

Common Garden Street: 7/10

So many seats. So many people. You can stand with a leg up, both down, leaning. Read a book. Select music. Here is a sport for all aspiring main characters to live their best lives. With the popularity of this stop, you will be seen. People are coming, people are going, but stand strong in what you are doing and you stand out as the one to be admired.

The main problem here is being fully sure of yourself. If you don’t step up, someone else will and that’ll steal your spotlight. Not to mention, this is the perfect place in terms of waiting times, buses seem to be infrequent enough that you get enough time to be admired based on how you wait. It’s striking that balance of being unaware while simultaneously being very aware of your surroundings, much like the bus station chaos is here but handle yourself correctly and you have perfected romanticising your story. 

Bus station: 1/10

This may sound controversial, but I am correct. The Bus Station only gets one point due to the fact that you can make yourself the main character by standing still staring at the board as everyone rushes around you. It’s hectic, it’s chaos, but you’re focused on the screen moving to your stop.

However, for those same reasons, this is the worst place to romanticise yourself. Everyone is looking for their bus, what if it’s late? What if it was early and it has left? Am I at the right stop? There is so much happening no one has time to take in your layered seasonal outfit, the mask you picked to match the jacket, possible shopping bags, or a coffee from an independent seller.

Thus, this location is too self-absorbed and too manic that you don’t have the time to picture yourself as the one that got away in the crowd, instead you’re annoying people by being in the way and you have to move because someone needs to get to bay 17.

Primrose Park Hotel: 9/10

This might be the bus stop of all bus stops. I won’t belittle you with setting the scene, I will simply tell you what’s available to romanticise yourself. You walk up, what’s next to you, a brick wall that leads to a walkway surrounded by trees, dog walkers and commuters passing. There’s a bench outside the shelter that you can sit on, how will you sit? Will you read? Is it raining? Do you have a hood? The shelter itself is graffitied, do you read it? Post it to Instagram? Will you sit under the shelter on that bench or stand?

It’s early morning and the sun is rising over the hill painting the sky, birds are tweeting. It’s a cold evening, you have your music and a place to sit. The possibilities here are endless. Someone is also walking by so you know your moments as the main character is being witnessed, and why wouldn’t they be when you have all this to work with?

The biggest loss here is it is the 100’s main route, with the number four bus coming less frequently. If there were more buses coming, your power here would be unparalleled. But with only one main bus coming, are you not the ultimate quirky character?

Greaves Stops: 4/10

Interesting choice. There are several of these on the main road to town, and each one has different possibilities. They all face the same fatal flaw: no one wants to stop four times on the same road, you become the antagonist to someone else’s story. The antagonist holds power, but this is not what we want to be viewed as you are striving to be the protagonist and using these stops are lethal to your reputation.

Depending on when you use it, you become the mysterious person living on the outskirts of town, you walk away and everyone longs to see you as they drive off. But nine times out of ten, you are the third person to stop the bus on this road. No one is envious of you.

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