It is 9:30 a.m. and I’m still waiting in the bus stop. Waiting and watching every bus that I don’t need right now whizzing in and out, some even repeatedly. Finally my bus arrives. It’s the same bus that I caught yesterday, just about half an hour late. Makes me wonder how many tiny factors make up the variations – pleasant or unpleasant in the routine of life. I shake out of my reverie, get on really fast and get my usual seat next to the door. (easiest to maneuver out of a crowd from).
It takes nearly five minutes for everyone to get on the bus. And at nearly the end of the crowd, a li’l old lady climbs up and manages to make her way to stand in the tiny free space right in front of me. She looks very old, very frail and makes me want to shield her from the jostling in the bus. It’s obvious that she easily gets irritated, hurt even with the movement of the bus and the insensitive people around pushing and elbowing each other.
It takes me a while to catch her eye as she is worriedly glancing toward the bus-conductor to buy her ticket. When I finally make eye-contact, I gesture to her to take my seat. As if miraculously, her entire demeanor changes and her wrinkled face breaks into a wide smile. Yet she waves off my offer and asks me not to bother, as she’s getting off at the next stop. She resumes looking at the conductor and glances back at me repeatedly, as if I was something rare to behold. Then she murmurs, “Thank you, Thank you for your politeness…” After waiting fruitlessly for the conductor, she actually makes her way right to the back of the bus to buy a ticket and comes back. It’s a wonder that she bothers about it to the extent of exerting herself, unnecessarily I feel. Even much younger people, including myself would not have been bothered enough to even get up from our seats, preferring to wait for the conductor to come over and fulfill his ‘duties’.
Then she comes up to me, beams yet another huge grin and proceeds to strike up a conversation about my life and generously offering her opinions on all and sundry as if I were a long-lost friend. And her enthusiasm is contagious; I end up smiling despite my tension of being extremely late to work already. As she is getting off, she turns back to me to thank me yet again and says she hopes to meet me soon.
This leads me to ponder on my attitude to my fellow passengers. Just a small gesture, barely any effort at all, elicits such a response and has the ability to make me feel that I have made a positive impact on another person’s day – it’s a revelation of sorts.
When I finally reach my stop, I get up and offer my seat to another lady standing in front of me. This lady, when she got on was irritable and generally being rude to other people swinging about her bags indiscriminately hitting people. Yet, as she sits down, in the few seconds before I get down, I see her begin to smile and thank me. And that’s thanks enough.

It is 9:30 a.m. and I’m still waiting in the bus stop. Waiting and watching every bus that I don’t need right now whizzing in and out, some even repeatedly. Finally my bus arrives. It’s the same bus that I caught yesterday, just about half an hour late. Makes me wonder how many tiny factors make up the variations – pleasant or unpleasant in the routine of life. I shake out of my reverie, get on really fast and get my usual seat next to the door. (easiest to maneuver out of a crowd from).

It takes nearly five minutes for everyone to get on the bus. And at nearly the end of the crowd, a li’l old lady climbs up and manages to make her way to stand in the tiny free space right in front of me. She looks very old, very frail and makes me want to shield her from the jostling in the bus. It’s obvious that she easily gets irritated, hurt even with the movement of the bus and the insensitive people around pushing and elbowing each other.

It takes me a while to catch her eye as she is worriedly glancing toward the bus-conductor to buy her ticket. When I finally make eye-contact, I gesture to her to take my seat. As if miraculously, her entire demeanor changes and her wrinkled face breaks into a wide smile. Yet she waves off my offer and asks me not to bother, as she’s getting off at the next stop. She resumes looking at the conductor and glances back at me repeatedly, as if I was something rare to behold. Then she murmurs, “Thank you, Thank you for your politeness…” After waiting fruitlessly for the conductor, she actually makes her way right to the back of the bus to buy a ticket and comes back. It’s a wonder that she bothers about it to the extent of exerting herself, unnecessarily I feel. Even much younger people, including myself would not have been bothered enough to even get up from our seats, preferring to wait for the conductor to come over and fulfill his ‘duties’.

Then she comes up to me, beams yet another huge grin and proceeds to strike up a conversation about my life and generously offering her opinions on all and sundry as if I were a long-lost friend. And her enthusiasm is contagious; I end up smiling despite my tension of being extremely late to work already. As she is getting off, she turns back to me to thank me yet again and says she hopes to meet me soon.

This leads me to ponder on my attitude to my fellow passengers. Just a small gesture, barely any effort at all, elicits such a response and has the ability to make me feel that I have made a positive impact on another person’s day – it’s a revelation of sorts.

When I finally reach my stop, I get up and offer my seat to another lady standing in front of me. This lady, when she got on was irritable and generally being rude to other people swinging about her bags indiscriminately hitting people. Yet, as she sits down, in the few seconds before I get down, I see her begin to smile and thank me. And that’s thanks enough.

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