Take some time to seriously think about the concept of Rideshare. It is exceptionally odd. After one (or five) aggressive “ride needed” posts in a friendly Facebook group, a random Queen’s related person—conveniently going the same direction as you—gives you the thumbs up. Before you know it, you’re sitting passenger side in the car of some stranger, bonding over coffee and breakfast sandwiches.
Ladies and gentlemen, Queen’s students may have perfected the modern hitchhike.
It goes without saying that the road trip experience can go one of two ways: Rideshare can be interesting, perhaps even eye opening at times, if you’re accompanied by a great carload of people. On the other hand, it can also be a bit discomforting. The last drive I had coming back to Kingston consisted of nothing but silence for four straight hours, through copious amounts of traffic and rain. I can’t even remember what the driver looked like, never mind the other five passengers in the compact car.
But fear not. The nature of this program usually equates to a good time. Put a few strangers from the same university in one space, and (usually) what you have left is nothing but good conversation.
The first time I tried Rideshare, I remember entering the car with a case of serious homesickness. It was the weekend following my first set of midterms and the thought of being on campus any longer was exhausting. But before I had even made it back home, I started to see things in a different perspective. This is all thanks to the energy of my road trip co-pals that got me to Toronto. I was truly lucky to be in presence of these very different and inspiring Queen’s characters.
After learning I was among a soon-to-be lab analyst, DJ, and doctor, the discussions of future aspirations and modern day culture became endless.
While the tunes of Bastille hummed from the speakers, the lab analyst went on about her motivation to continue research, and how pivotal it was for her to find a supportive group of friends that actually encouraged her career goals.
A fifth year mechanical engineer and hopeful DJ spoke of his true love for music; elaborating on the conflicting interests between him and his parents, and his dream to finally present a fresh sound to the world of EDM.
Meanwhile, the doctor expressed his love for practicing medicine, along with his grievance for still being in school as he watched his friends start up careers and payrolls.
Listening to these successful students tell their story and open up about not only the good, but the bad in their life, reminded me of the inevitable up and downs everyone must go through. While some people may seem like they have everything figured out on the outside, the simple truth is that everyone’s struggling. Whether it’s having issues adjusting to university life, realizing the true colors of your friends, or pursuing a personal talent instead of a degree, we all experience adversity in our journey to become the person we aspire to be.
In approximately 2 hours and 48 minutes Rideshare gave me an irreplaceable experience, or a therapeutic session, if you will—kind of like The Breakfast Club on wheels.
The moral: if you haven’t tried this method of transportation, I recommend that you do. To put it simply, it’s cool to talk to people you don’t know in a sober setting. Even if it’s dreadfully horrible and your driver doesn’t even offer you a side glance, you’re still getting the luxury of a drive for a pretty decent price.
Live on, Rideshare!
Jaclyn Sanscartier, Online Contributor
Image: We Heart It