Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Bus Report #1013

This morning the sweet Russian lady with the bad knees was already in the bus stop when I walked over. She was sitting on the bench and patted the seat beside her. "Sit, sit."
"Oh, thanks, I'm okay, I sit all day," I told her, smiling.
She shook her head. "I no much English. Russian, yes."
"I don't know any Russian."
"French? You know French? My second language."
"Just Spanish," I said.
She sighed. "I no Spanish."
I tried explaining that my great-grandparents were from Russia but she didn't understand.
Before the bus arrived, I asked her how to say 'good morning' in Russian, and she told me. I won't try to spell it here, but we practiced for a moment, and then she went on to tell me how to say 'good afternoon' and 'good evening'.
We got on the bus and I wished her a Russian good morning. I'll do the same tomorrow, if I see her.
Tasha told us to hold on, and we did, and we sped off down Arguello.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Bus Report #1012

Early morning, the sky several Ed Ruscha-inspired colors - black black, charcoal black, grey black, blue black, green blue. All hovering above downtown. No stars. Just planes.

Waiting for the bus the smell of fresh croissants from the bakery across the street tempts me something awful, but they're not open yet. Good for my wallet, if not my morale.

Old man across the street opens the front door to his building and hobbles out into the entry way. Black blazer over pajama top and boxer shorts. It's too cold for that. He uses his cane to dislodge his morning paper from the mail box overflow area. He stoops low to pick it up and goes back inside. To warmth, I hope. 

Elderly Russian woman with the bad knees. Good morning, hello, knees, the same routine we do every morning. Boy is she sweet, though.

Tasha pulls up in the 33, we get in, and then there are three people on the bus: me, the Russian woman, and the garlic tea drinker. With, yes, her vile flask of garlic tea. Oof. I want to tell her to put it away. I want to grab it from her and chuck it out the window. But I don't. Maybe one day.

Monday, October 08, 2018

Bus Report #1011

The bus was empty this morning, perhaps most people got the day off?
For the beginning of my ride it was just me and the friendly Russian woman with the bad knee, with Tasha driving us.

We flew through the Haight and up the hill, and picked up the giant genie on Twin Peaks.
As always, he was the most put together person on the bus, or at least he looked that way.
Lotioned his hands, arms and head with quick twisty movements.
Flannel and jeans and tidy-looking sneakers, dopp kit on his lap, dandy brush, mustache balm and all the rest.

I noticed he'd changed his nail polish (he's been polishing with blues and greys lately) and his color almost matched mine. I caught the man sitting across from me watching as I held my hand up and looked at my nails, then over at the giant genie's, and then back at mine.

The man's got style. No dispute there.

He ate his oatmeal and I listened to a podcast. We picked up more regulars, everyone quieter and more tired-looking than usual.

When the giant genie got out at Mission, I caught a glimpse of his nails one more time - a lighter, plummier blue than what I'd thought. Still good.