From the trenches

If you and I are friends on The Facebook then you’ve already heard about this.  Apologies.  But this version will have more detail, so that’s good (right?).

Last night I went out for Indian food at the always awesome Ganapati in Peckham with Jeremy and a couple friends.  we had some delicious curry and conversation.  The new Alice in Wonderland movie was discussed at length and with much venom.

After dinner I walked to the bus stop by Khan’s Bargain Store and waited for the 343.  I waited for a while.  About 30 minutes in all.  In the rain.  In that time I saw two old drunks (or two auld drunks as I like to think of them in my bad mental Scottish accent) stumbling around and shouting, not in a particularly aggressive way, just a sort of benign drunk way, at each other and passers-by.

Their bus came and they got on even though the lady didn’t have enough money on her Oyster card.  The driver told them to get off the bus.  They refused and sat down.  The cops came (really quickly too!) and after trying to convince them to get off  started to physically pull the lady off the bus and she began to scream, ‘Dave! Don’t leave me, Dave!’ And her partner stood in the doorway and stared at her.  One of the cops said, ‘Well, on or off?’ and Dave got off the bus and put his arm around his lady and off the walked down the road, arms around each other, cider cans still in hand.

Finally my bus showed up and many of us waiting under the shop awnings breathed a sigh of relief.  30 minutes of bus waiting time feels more like 3 hours while you’re living it.  6 hours in the rain.  So I got on my bus and sat down amidst all the soggy tired travellers when the guy sitting diagonally across from me in a single seat by the door started to sing: ‘TAKE ME DOWN OOH PARADISE CITY!  TAKE ME DOWN OOH PARADISE CITY!’ He would pause for a few seconds and then repeat.  Occasionally yelling ‘Grass is green!  Girls are pretty!’ as well.  When it was time to get off the bus he stood and shouted, and I promise you I am not making this up, ‘I wish I could eat all your afterbirths!  But I’m not allowed to do that anymore!  I really wish I could though!’  And then he got off the bus. 

Sometimes I hate taking the bus because of people like this, but sometimes I love it all the more.


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