Wednesday, July 25, 2007

On the 545

The energy meets you not like a tidal wave a la New York subways, but like the bracing surf at a nice beach.

You're over-caffeinated, trying to throw off the cobwebs of late-night web surfing and early morning alarm clocks. Your playlist is playing the electronica rhythm you hope will wake you up. You resolve to wake up half an hour earlier, so that you can get to work early and get more done in the day. Despite knowing that you will be scrambling the next time around too.

Your nose is buried in a book. Yet you raise the corner of your eye at every stop, looking for familiar faces. You're an island with your headphones and book, but the social animal in you still craves for that smile and acknowledgement of an acquaintance.

Others people-watch. Someone plays with his GameBoy, the animated pixels somehow eerily silent as he's turned the sound off. The bus has wi-fi, but not many people are plugged into their laptops. Maybe that's for the best.

Surprisingly, very few people read. You wonder what this world's come to when people can spend forty-five minutes mulling and gazing out of the window and yet not surrender themselves to the simple pleasure of a book.  Not even a magazine or a comic book, I ask?

Commuting by the bus brings many fresh insights. And too many questions.


CAR said...

I absolutely detest reading in a bus (even at times in a train) but I do envy those who can actually pull it off. For starters it gives me an instant headache but further persistance with text on a bus leads to convincing feelings of nausea.

I remember the four hour journeys from Pune in a shaky stirry bus, best spend with either living human company or a winding sony walkman.

But some times, Ajay, Looking out is best

Ajay said...

I like the transit buses in the US. They're clean, air-conditioned and roomy. Quite unlike the ST buses in Maharashtra :-).

Sometimes, yes, but forty-five minutes every day alone with my thoughts...? I think I'll pass :-)

Anonymous said...

> Not even a magazine or a comic book, I ask?

Not even a Cryptonomicon? Is this the same 545 I used to take?

Ajay said...

As I wrote, "very few".

I see maybe a book or two on the bus, and maybe 2-3 iPod/GameBoy/Zune equivalents. The rest stare into space.