Thursday, June 30, 2016
Over the course of a trip innumerable situations arise intent on slowing down the bus. We may have some passengers who move a little slower than others, or a lengthy process to board a passenger in a wheelchair, or hit a succession of red lights and spend a lot of time going nowhere. One particular passenger was vocally annoyed with this slower service. In his defense, we were running a little behind schedule. He had a lot of ground to cover and wanted to catch the train. Unfortunately, he was going in the wrong direction on this late-running bus and needed to catch two more buses to get to the train station. I sympathized with his plight since I've been there once or twice in my travels. It would be nice to just be able to hop on any random bus and somehow arrive where you need to be, but in the meantime I let him know how to get where he needed to go. The extra attention wasn't placating him at all, and each red light only added insult to injury. Soon enough it became clear we'd reached the end of our road together and he exited.
On another trip a Haitian woman with a bike boarded. She stood up front near me, had a habit of talking to the air mostly in Creole, and wore her bike helmet the whole trip. Her English was heavily accented which made it difficult to understand, but I'm pretty sure as she exited she wished me life and love.
At the Central Terminal I bumped into Gemini, a bus fan I hadn't seen for awhile. I love bus fans. They know all the trivia and intricacies of the buses and routes on a higher level than most of us drivers. They are a tiny fraction of the ridership, and their encyclopedic memories are impressive. She let me know she was going back to her home state until she made a success of herself to support her "boyfriend", a bus operator she had an affinity for. An awkward hand shake, well wishes, a request to send us a postcard - and she was gone.
Do constellations know they're connected without being connected? They are separated by unfathomable distances, yet to our eyes they travel together. They didn't choose their travel companions, or their orbits, though somehow they coalesce and are greater than their parts. We are all individuals as well, each of us a beacon in the void, moving together.