Discovering they sprinted onto the Metro bus and not the American University shuttle, Liz Varner of Medfield, M.A. and Jake Assael of Pelham, N.Y., both 17, looked around with alarm as they left the bus stop in Tenleytown.
“I first thought we were on the wrong bus when it looked like we were turning onto a busier road, almost like a highway,” said Assael. “And then a guy came onto the bus, paid with his Metro card, and asked the driver if the bus would go into D.C. Then I realized that we hadn’t paid, and that we definitely didn’t want to go into D.C.”
Assael called a teaching assistant, who explained he and Varner had accidentally run onto a Metro bus, and that they should exit at the next stop. They waited on the corner of Irving and Mt. Pleasant Street in Columbia Heights, 12 miles from the AU campus.
Three teaching assistants from their Discover the World of Communications summer program arrived 20 minutes later to rescue them.
Varner said, “We didn’t get back to the dorm until 9:30, but everything worked out and Jake and I had fun being lost in D.C.”