For a variety of reasons, I was not able to bike to work the other day. I took the bus.
Now, my bus route, which basically gives me door to door service, isn’t by any means the dodgiest route in town. But every once in a while, let’s just say I wish parking were cheaper.
I was sitting on the bus. One other person was on the bus, sitting probably six rows behind me. The bus has a capacity of about 40, if every seat is full. I was sitting across the seat – because at 6’5, sitting fore-and-aft leaves my knees jammed against the seat in front of me.
A woman – sixtysomething, gray hair, with that frantic manner and the thousand-yard glare of the emotionally-challenged, got on the bus and clumped down the aisle.
And sat down next to me, as I scrambled to pull my knees out of the way.
“Some people are so rude”, she said, loudly enough for the whole bus to hear, not that they cared, as I wedged my knees into place. She bustled herself into place, muttering, again, about how rude I was.
I turned toward the window, and coughed a long, dry, hacking cough that sounded like it threatened to bring up breakfast. And then another. And then another.
She stopped muttering.
I dialed a number on my cell phone (my home number), and started conversing with the voicemail; “Hey. Yeah, I’m on the bus. Oh, I think my fever might get down to 101, but I gotta work. Yeah, I’m short already this week.”
The lady was listening.
” Oh, I was up puking all night. Coulda swore I saw blood…”