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Monday, June 11, 2007

Observations on a bus

Fingers of sunlight crept through the haze of a sultry morning as I boarded the bus. Beside me on the pavement workmen shovelled hot asphalt and the acrid tendrils of smoke cauterised the back of my throat. Upon seating I quickly checked my belongings , cash, grocery list, cellphone and sms messages. Although the bus ride is only ten minutes at its slowest, the hot summer morning was no incentive to walk it especially when there was mounting crowds in the city with each half hour that passed. A very elegant elderly lady sat across from me, her hair was a faded strawberry blonde and coiffed and was very demure looking for a lady of her mature years. Closing my bag and preparing to disembark a further stop away, a young woman in pharmacy attire stood up to get off, she had a cascade of deep auburn hair. While waiting for the bus to stop the older woman reached across and said ‘you have beautiful hair’ to which the blushed and startled girl replied a polite thank you. The demure woman watched wistfully as the girl skipped off the bus for work . She looked down to her liver spotted hand and pinched the skin back so there were no wrinkles. She released her hand but in her eyes was frustrative sadness . She stared in deep thought and reached for her locket around her neck. Inside the tiny clam frame there seemed to be days of a happier time, when she was in her full bloom and perhaps in love. A quiver came to her lips and the locket was snapped back quickly and composed herself. The next stop was mine. And I left the bus with a sense of foreboding to my twilight years.


Hammer said...

Getting old is a bummer but I guess it's better than the alternative.

Judith said...

true. And to think I found not one but several grey hairs for the first time today *breaks out the hair dye*

Flyinfox_SATX said...

Its Amazing what we can observe in ourselves by just observing others. This was an excellent post today Judith!


My Reflecting Pool said...

You tell a good visual. Every so often I am confronted with what things might end up like and i too walk away with a sense of foreboding.

Stucco said...

I'd bet that the lady lost someone represented by that locket.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

What a beautiful snippet you present here. Perhaps there are few things sadder than the wistful longing of old people for their own youths.

I think that as she examined her hands and then desperately checked her locket, she was looking for a loophole, some evidence that she was still, indeed, the vibrant and perhaps beautiful young woman she thought she remembered.

Judith said...

it was heartbreaking to observe her especially when she looked in the locket and her lip quivered
I expect as the observer of human nature you are you seen a lot of moments like this
You know I would put money on that
I am sure that when she opened the locket she was looking for reassurance but instead all she got was bittersweet memories and on an entirely different tangent some guys broke into a museum in the uk early last week and took about 6 of banksys works -nothing else

Glamourpuss said...

Poignant stuff.



Judith said...

We can only hope time is graceful with us eh?

General Catz said...

Christ. That was really depressing. i'm starting to go through that now. Fuck.

Judith said...

Sorry to be the chicken of depression rather than the bluebird of happiness, With your musical tastes though you will always be hip!