Blue Bird sold a few All American pushers in England some years ago - have you ever seen a BBAA with its door on the left side? Not a huge success (I wonder why...) Kids are not as coddled and over-protected there as here, so they walk (shock horror) or ride a bike (oh god, what next), or take the regular bus or train (it can't get any worse), and guess what, they don't all die every day on the way to school. Actually, they live, every day. What a concept.
At nine years old I was booking a taxi to take me from my school at the end of term (it was a boarding school) to the nearest town, buying my train ticket to Gatwick Airport, going through check-in and security by myself, and getting on the morning BUA flight to Rotterdam in the Netherlands (in a BAC 1-11 no less!
) with passport in hand. I was an international jetsetter before my voice broke. I find it hard to believe that kids these days can't get themselves a few miles to school or anywhere else without their mummsy driving them in some obscenely overweight SUV or breederwagon everywhere - what sort of whingeing adults will they turn out to be? Jeez.
And yes, buses for school use in England were often the oldest crappiest buses that the local company could find, knowing that they would soon end up looking like similar buses anywhere else in the world. I rode many a mile on school trips in an ancient 1950s Commer Avenger bus with some awful Duple body that smelled of unspeakable things, and it was LOUD. With a 2-stroke TS3 engine screaming its guts out under a cover whose sound padding had gone years before, my ears would be ringing after a few miles. Bliss! Maybe that's where I developed my liking for 2-stroke diesels (along with Deltics)?