Bus Report #673
He had his paper on the seat and as the bus left my stop and lurched down 16th, I pointed to the seat and asked if I could sit down.
He said nothing, grunted.
So I sat down and he yanked the papers out from under me without a word.
Every time the bus passed a church he crossed himself, but not in that quick way I see people do it most of the time. He held one hand up, crossed himself with the other, then clasped his hands in prayer for a moment.
As we kept driving down Fillmore I began to wonder - would he cross himself as we passed the Church of St. John Coltrane? I can't describe how much I wanted him to do this... I watched him as we got closer and closer to the church, and I was almost giddy.
Then, the moment of truth.
He got out at O'Farrell.
I transferred at Geary and went to wait for the 38. Next Bus said 8 minutes and 9 minutes for the regular, 19 minutes and 24 minutes for the Limited. Another slow night on the 38 line, I thought. Just great.
The 38 showed up 10 minutes later and I got on, stood pressed between a girl with an immobilizer on her leg and a guy with dark shades and a puffy jacket shoved under his arm.
I stood above a seated woman who had a pale orange ladybug crawling on top of her head. I didn't say anything, just watched the ladybug walk around.
Three times the woman ran her hands through her hair and I caught my breath, hoping she hadn't squished the ladybug - I always root for a good ladybug.
The woman, and her stowaway, got out at Arguello.
Two USF students sitting behind me chatted about their blood types and whether or not they were going to give blood. I wanted to give them a thumbs up. But I didn't.
Half a dozen people got out at my stop. I walked down the street with one of my elderly neighbors, a smiley woman with thick glasses who always asks me if I am getting home from work. I say she asks me things, but really she doesn't speak much English so we mostly just mime to each other, and smile.
Tonight I said, "Yep, going to go make dinner, what about you?"
She shook her head and wagged her fingers at me. "I don't," she said, as in, I don't know what you're asking me.
"Dinner?" I said, raising my hand to my mouth.
She smiled and said, "Oh, yes."
I wished her a good night and crossed the street to go home.