Krista Miller (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a junior communications major at Virginia Tech living in Blacksburg, Va. This past summer was her rookie season with the Glassmen. She plans on pursuing a career in mass media. She'll be contributing frequent reports to DCI.org.^By Krista Miller 1 -- All your worldly possessions are there. Remember how hard it was clearing out your junk at the end of tour? Boy, I do. All I could think carrying my stuff to my parents' car was, "Did I start out with this much stuff?" My wonderful seat partner, bless her for putting up with me, would tell you that I definitely did. 2 -- The sheer amount of time we spend riding. Ever sit down once you got home and think about how much time you actually spent on that bus this summer? Sometimes you feel like all you ever got done was riding a bus. Riding to a show, Riding to the next housing site at night, it's a vicious (but beautiful) cycle. 3 -- It's where great conversations are held. It's almost like going home and sitting on the couch with your friends. You finally get to rest, relax, and talk about the day's happenings. 4 -- It's where you sleep. The bus is the only place that you'll consistently sleep all summer. Your "floor time" is almost always in a different place daily, but you can rely on the bus to be there. Inevitably, you'll find just the right position for sleeping, and in most cases, you'll get really good at getting really comfortable. 5 -- Your seat partner. He or she is kind of like your roommate. They're probably the person you spend the most time with. If you're lucky, you get along great, and you'll stay close well after tour. You can always depend on them to be there after a long day to listen to you grouch about something. And if you're really lucky, they don't mind your occasional leaning on them during the night. 6 -- TV. 802 didn't have a TV, which was fine by me because personally I enjoyed the quiet. However, the bus is most likely the only "regular" television that you're going to see all summer. Who cares that you'll probably fall asleep before the movie is even started! 7 -- Memories. If you've marched, then you know that some of the greatest memories are made on the bus. The bus is the place where, eventually, you "let your hair down" and everyone is laid back and tries to relax. People do crazy things, and generally have a lot of fun. Looking back, that's where 80 percent of the good times come from. That's when you don't have to think about marching, even though you usually do, and you can really take the time to get to know your corps mates. 8 -- Your environment. Basically, the bus is the only place where you can control your environment. It's the place where your pictures and window decorations will find their home, and they'll be there until you take them down, or decide to rotate some new pictures in. You can even go as far as personalizing your seat with a sheet or seat cover. Sara and I never had much luck with the sheet over our seat, though. When you first get on the bus, personalizing your space is the most fun part. 9 -- "The real world." While the real world doesn't typically exist during your time with the corps, the bus is one place where you can find what I'll call "pseudo reality." The bus is where you'll find your time to write home, call your significant other, read a favorite book or magazine, write in your journal, or whatever real world activity makes you happy. There's not much time for any of that elsewhere, so the bus is home to the only "real world" you'll know. 10 -- Consistency. As I'm sure you know, drum corps is an ever-changing activity. Not only do things change from year to year, but on the road, things change minute to minute. The only place you can confidently say will remain constant through your summer is the bus. It's your safe haven of sorts, and it will grow to be a place that you love, as well as a place you're ready to get out of by the end of the summer. It's the only part of every day on tour that you can completely rely on to be there, unless of course your bus breaks down!