"Long story short: My son got home, ecstatic with independence."
I came across Mayer Hillman's writings on environment, transport a while ago.
Parental Fears and Loss of Children's independance
Our minor adventures with the Dublin bus to school can be seen a bit in this blog.
Daire & Kate are now mostly getting the very nice Kelly bus to school.
Occasionally the Dublin bus.
And some other families locally are also getting it so there is mostly a decent bunch of kids travelling the same route and older ones are watching out for the smaller ones.
First Story (Mom lets 9yr old rude NY subway home) Via Bruce Schneier on security
Overestimating Threats Against Children
And off topic a Myriad is 10000 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myriad