Sunday, October 27, 2013

BUS STORY # 364 (When Nothing Happens On The Bus)

handsome by busboy4

handsome, a photo by busboy4 on Flickr.

Most bus rides are completely uneventful. It’s the exceptional ride that yields up a story, or an interesting portrait, or even the paragraph-long brief encounters I call “shorts.”

This morning, I took the bus downtown. Here are two things I saw, neither of them particularly exciting or provocative, but pleasurable to me, and lost to me had I been driving or reading.

On the front aisle-facing bench seat opposite the driver, I saw a pregnant mom with a stroller in front of her. To her right sat the stroller’s usual passenger, a cute kid no more than a year old, if that, with a purple stuffed animal clutched in one arm and a wonderfully curious and open face which took in each one of our own faces in turn.

After studying one of us for a minute or so, he’d say something to his mom.

I couldn't make anything out of the babble, but his mom could. She leaned toward him and answered, in intelligible English. After her response, he went on to the next rider, and the process repeated itself.

I’d love to have a translation of his bus stories from this morning.

Shortly afterwards, two school kids boarded, an older sister I’d put in fifth grade, and her younger brother I’d put in third. She directed him down the aisle, then put her hand lightly on his shoulder to guide him into a pair of empty seats.

She had the look of the older sister charged with taking care of her younger brother, and who took that charge seriously without seeing it as an opportunity to boss him around.

Which might explain why he had the look of a boy who didn’t have a problem with a girl who was additionally his sister guiding him around.

When they settled in their seats, he turned to look at her, and she at him, then they both faced forward.

It was sweet.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh my brother of the bus story, this one resonated with me even more, perhaps than some of the more storied passages. You captured the day-to-day aspect of our commute, where there is a more gentle aspect to life. These days don't produce the fantastical or the uber-remarkable, but they are beautiful nonetheless.

Thank you for thinking of sharing one of these such days.

11:49 AM  
Blogger Busboy said...

Thank you for your kind words, Richard. I am still feeling grateful you resumed your bus stories. Last year, about this time, I did a story called "Other Voices: Other Peoples' Shorts" in which I recopied (with links and credits) very short bus stories from various other bus bloggers. I've decided to do the same again, and you are the only repeater from last year. Thank you for continuing to share your marvelous takes on your daily commute.

4:57 PM  

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