The NX1

I take the NX1 bus home from work every day. On a good day, I catch the 5:35 bus, which is one of the plush, big, green ones. If I were that desperate to check my Facebook updates, I could do it on the big, green NX1, because they have wireless internet. Which is fascinating, really. If I were driving in my car next to a big, green bus, would I have wireless then? Is there an internet forcefield over the bay? No matter, I am loathe to haul a lap top anywhere, and in all honestly, mucking around on Facebook is the likeliest activity.

Today the bus was completely filled to overflowing. Literally. They made one more girl get off, and she had to wait for the 5:55, which tre sucks.

A woman directly behind me was talking on her cell phone, and she kept at it with dogged enthusiasm the entire ride. She was talking about her job, but generically. She got a bonus this year that was 8.5% of her salary. Which will cover her upcoming trip to Ghana. And she likes her office because it’s right in downtown and she can walk along the bay during her lunch if she wants. She thinks that her job is relatively easy and not terribly challenging. She asked her boss if she could move desks because she doesn’t like the woman who sits next to her, as she is very negative. When they switched from one e-mail service to another, the unliked coworker complained a lot about how she didn’t like. So chatty bus lady, she bought herself a radio at Walgreens and she just plays that to tune out her coworker. Or maybe she’ll play a CD. She asked the person on the phone if they liked their job and if it was hard to get a government job. It all went on for quite some time. Highly uninteresting, mildly moronic, but compellingly listenable to.

When the bus got to the first stop, the chatty bus lady got off. Because I had just listened to her natter on about her job for 20 minutes I needed to see her. Who *is* this woman? I wish I could say that she was some sort of woman-child, or an over gymmed newly divorced lady, or a bland plump little mouse. But she was an ordinary Oakland lady… early 40’s, light-skinned black lady, with freckles and dreadlocks, loose flowy sort of clothes.

The silent girl next to me saw me looking at Chatty Patty. She made eye contact with me and said “I can’t believe how some people talk on their cell phones like that.”

To which I confessed “I know! I had to look at her! I couldn’t believe that conversation she had. I had to see her!”

Silent girl doesn’t have more to say, but she starts laughing like crazy. Spurred, I continue to have my internal workings out loud. “Who do you think she was talking to? I thought maybe it was a career counselor or something. It didn’t sound like someone she knew. And could you believe that part about the radio? Seriously. Would you not kill one of your coworkers if they started playing a radio out loud all the time? Who does that?! Dang.”

Silent girl is still laughing. I guess maybe I surprised her with all I had to say about this, but I had a long time to think about that woman’s telephone conversation and I was bursting with the musings of it all.

But it was a neat moment with a stranger. And those are good.

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