His regular riders know him as the "happy-go-lucky" driver.
Whether it's in English, French, Spanish or Arabic, Guy Blais welcomes all aboard his bus — the 85 Hochelaga — with a huge smile.
For Blais, being friendly is just part of the job, so he was surprised when he learned a student had posted a glowing comment about him on Facebook.
An anonymous high school student who takes the 85 thanked him for his "radiant smile." She said it motivated her — and helped her graduate from high school.
"Every morning when the bus stops at my school he tells us not to give up, that we can do it, to finish the long school year," says the post on the Spotted: STM page.
"He made a huge difference in my life. He was the only one who encouraged me."
In an interview Monday, Blais played down the high praise.
"I don't have anything to do with that," he said. "I just encourage her and all her fellow students to keep going, keep working. I knew they could do it."
Blais is relatively new to driving a bus.
After working a 9-5 government job, he got fed up with working alone in a cubicle and stepped into the driver's seat two years ago.
"I like to be with people. I like to drive. I like Montreal. I like being outside," he said.
Blais says he knows that, for some, a chat with the bus driver may be the only social interaction they have that day.
"I think we should, as a society, interact more with each other. We don't interact enough and sometimes, a little encouragement makes all the difference," he said.