Whilst waiting for the bus.

9/27/2009 03:46:00 pm

Today I was at waiting at the domestic terminal for a bus heading in my general homeward direction. There was a middle-aged couple with two large suitcases, and the wife was trying to figure out the bus timetable and generally acting flustered while her husband trod behind her, wordless, pulling along the bags. One bus came for the longterm car park. She hurried over to it and asked the driver some questions. A bus heading the wrong way came and she asked the driver the same questions.

I could tell, once the bus had gone, that she still didn't understand the instructions the driver had given her and she still didn't realise that the Sunday timetable was behind the weekday one, so I told her that they were at the right stop and then somehow the conversation started.

They were from Melbourne; the public transport is much cheaper there and the roads are better. And can you believe that a taxi from the airport to Darling Harbour is 30 dollars?! (I could.) She almost didn't come, because of the dust-storm. She heard it was radioactive, that's what they're saying. I'm pretty sure it's not radioactive, I said, and then told her it was dusty yesterday too. Yes, she replied, they kept that a secret from me. I told her where to get off the bus at Bondi Junction, the very last stop, I said. It's the interchange, you can't miss it.

Bondi Junction Interchange.

But she wasn't convinced, she asked me at least two more times. I told her how they would need to change buses or take a train from the interchange. She asked if there were any views to see at Bondi Junction. The train interchange, I said, and the Westfield. She wanted to go shopping, they'd told her it was warm in Sydney but it was cold and windy and expensive. They even charge you to line up for the taxi: 3 dollars just to get in line. But I work in a B&B and everyone from Sydney said don't even think about taking the train because it's private.

Her husband said nothing. The conversation continued. I found out how much they charge their tennants for a 2-bedroom unit. That's the best thing about these interest rates, we can put the rent up...I told her how much my rent is, weekly. For a house, she asked, wide-eyed? I explained. See, she said to her husband, I told you they'll pay it if they have to!

We discussed the price of the zoo, and the cable car. I told them not to go on a windy day.

The bus came. As I got on, she asked me again which stop they would get off at. The last one, I said, can't miss it. She asked the driver the same questions and double-checked the price of the tickets. I went up the back of the bus and put on my headphones. And then for some bizarre reason they got off at Mascot shops.

She waved as they walk past my window. Her husband nodded his head at me, and continued with the bags.

Why is it that I always end up having these kinds of exchanges whilst waiting for the bus?

One day I will tell you about the conversation I had with Chris, a transit officer, when I was waiting for the bus at the airport. He gave me the number for Sydney Transit recruitment because he thought I was serious when I said I wanted to be a bus driver.

Or I will tell you about the Indian lady who told me about all the bingo halls in the Eastern Suburbs and the price of bananas in Kingsford while we were waiting for a 370. It was late. She missed the start of bingo in Maroubra but there was another one in Matraville, so it didn't matter too much. 

What is it about me?

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