Monday, June 05, 2006

A few shared words.





I stroll idly down the pavement, squinting in the comforting sunlight, trying not to stare too obviously into the gardens and houses that I pass, though curious as always about the slow changes that affect this stretch of road: a new driveway laid, a new house for sale, a new car window adorning the edge of the road in a million shiny pieces.

I arrive at the bus stop, it’s been a while. I choose my position in this still life of patient waiters. A couple of Other Buses arrive and leave and all those around me are gone, and I listen to my music and half wonder if they cancelled the 43 while I’ve been away. An elderly lady shuffles towards me with a smile.

“Was that the 43?” she asks, although I don’t hear it because of my headphones. How introverted and anti-social they make me. I lift off those walls to the world and lean closer.

“Was that the 43?” she repeats, referring to the bus that had just deprived me of the last of those waiting with me.

“No, the 44. I haven’t seen the 43 yet and I’ve been here a while.” I reply, returning her kind smile.

“Oh, good. I was worried I’d missed it!”

Together we wait, she and I, brief companions with those few shared words. And then the bus.

3 Comments:

Blogger JohnB said...

This is a conversation I have about once a week...a motif of sorts...and sometimes fun.

4:33 pm  
Blogger SJ said...

I guess this type of conversation is okay on buses, but it's mightily annoying on trains. Someone gets on a train and asks the first person, "is this the train for X?", of course, it is, why else would you get on it?

Anyway, it's a really nice blog.

8:33 pm  
Blogger Geoff said...

Thanks sj!

11:09 pm  

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