The bus swings violently
clutching the bars tightly
raindrops stain the windows
they are tenacious
and cling on
The vehicle trudges on, jerks
I balance my dripping umbrella
between my knees
Almost everyday, I get on this bus and for an hour and a half, I’m at the mercy of the driver as he leads this machine from West to East, racing against the setting sun, or his schedule. I hear they have specific timings to adhere to. I try to recall how today’s driver looks like. Nothing comes to mind, except that he’s male. Chinese, I think. I guess I was more concerned with trying to maintain my balance on wet heels, my bag slung in front of me, hands holding a dripping umbrella.
Suddenly I panic a little, and wonder if I should know how he looks like. My life is in his hands, afterall, for the next ninety minutes.
Round red splotches smudge the front windows.
All lined up along the highway.
The bus inches forward.
Above the hum of the engine,
I hear snatches of conversations
Two men are speaking in Mandarin
Their accents aren’t local
I catch some words
Both are dressed in simple striped polo t-shirts and trainers.
Someone’s laptop bag hits my arm. My tricep, to be exact.
He doesn’t stop
I’m sure I’ve done it before as well
What do people think of in a traffic jam? The LCD clock above the PSA gantry reads 1855
I have taken half an hour to get from Alexandra to Shenton Way.