The life of a Yakima commuter

April Porter, Staff Writer

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An 8 a.m. class means a 6 a.m. alarm. I leave my apartment an hour ahead of time to leave for CWU.

“Why?” You ask. Because I live in Yakima and drive 45 minutes to school and 45 minutes back five days a week for my education.

There are just a few things I have to keep in mind because of my long commute.

One of those is making sure I have everything I need for the day in my backpack. The chance most people get to run back to their room quickly and grab something is not an option for me.

During the winter, I sometimes pack for two days just in case I get snowed in after making it to Ellensburg. This means packing an extra pair of clothes in my car, along with my toothbrush and toothpaste.

Thankfully, friends have told me they have family in Ellensburg that would be able to house me if I ever got stuck.

A nice resource provided to other commuters is the Yakima-Ellensburg commuter bus.

I have heard so many good things about it.

No, I have not had the pleasure of actually riding it myself. I tried to get a ride two times, but failed to get to the right bus stop at the right time.

Before you think less of me, there are two different bus stops at YVCC and the time schedule is confusing. I hope one day I will have the honor of finally riding the Yakima-Ellensburg Commuter, but today is not that day.

Being a poor college student commuting from Yakima leaves me in Ellensburg until my last class is done in order to save on gas. No matter how late that class may be.

Every Tuesday this quarter I have an 8 a.m. class and a 4 p.m. class, which means I have about a six hour break to do whatever I want. So my Netflix relax time is usually spent in a café on campus.

Never take your warm comfy couch at home for granted!

And I want to thank every professor who felt the need to cancel class last minute. I do not check my email on my 45 minute drive, so when I show up for class and no one is there it is a little disappointing. Especially, if it was the only class I had that day, which means I drove an hour and a half for the joy of driving over the mountains and back once again.

Do not even get me started on the parking on campus!

Something that has helped with the drive is Audible; what a fantastic invention. Last year I listened to all three Lord of the Rings books. My husband and his brother, while they were commuting from Yakima to CWU, went through the whole Harry Potter series.

This year I wanted some balance in my life, so I am listening to “Focus on the Family” on the way to school and “Jurassic Park” on the way home. I get my good family advice on the way to CWU and dinosaurs tearing people apart on the way home.

Many college students get the experience of having a  social life, education and sometimes family all in one place. As a Yakima-Ellensburg commuter, most of my life is back in Yakima.

But I am determined like everyone else on this campus to graduate and get a good education. So I will come to school with my backpack full of my extra belongings and a PB& J sandwich to conquer every class.

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The life of a Yakima commuter