Of late, I’ve noticed how reluctant bus drivers are to accept the very passengers that pay their wages.
Three days a week, I catch the bus from its terminus. (I’m uncomfortable with this word in this context. I want a word to indicate the place at which buses start, rather than that at which they terminate. Startimus? Beginnimus? I digress.) Several bus routes start here, and often my route of choice has two, possibly three, buses waiting to depart, all lined up in and amongst the other buses in a style that Evel Knievel would have been happy to jump over.
But the buses are lined up in a random order, the routes interleaved with one another and no indicator as to which of the buses might pull out next. In some of the buses the driver is waiting, drinking his or her coffee and/or reading the news of the day. Others are empty.
The prospective passengers generally stand in front of the buses in an effort to catch the eye of their chosen driver, or to force the driver to make the decision over whether to run them over or to allow them on board.
The other day, though, a bus sporting my route number of choice was hiding behind one of its brethren. It was parked slightly shy of the other buses, giving the prospective passengers no knowledge as to its existence. And suddenly, without a murmur of warning, it zoomed out and up the street, bereft of passengers but no doubt guided by a driver grinning from ear to ear over his achievement. Cock.
In other news, I have a slight insecurity on buses. My bus generally fills up before a whole heap of people alight at Stockwell to continue their respective journeys to work sub-terrain. Having boarded at the terminus, I always opt for and secure an window seat upstairs. After a few stops and once each double-seat is occupied by a single arse (bodily part, not a slight), the aisle seats start to be filled, and usually, someone sits next to me. But when we hit Stockwell, lots of people alight, and some double-seats become available.
Here’s my issue: if the person sat next to me is staying on the bus, does their moving to a double seat indicate that (a) I smell, (b) I creep them out or (c) they want the extra room afforded by the double-seat.