Wednesday, October 30, 2002

It's a five-minute walk from my house to the tube station, but this morning - well, it was raining and I was feeling a bit bleah and there was a bus coming, so - I took the bus.

Big mistake. Five minutes later, we had barely moved an inch. There was some sort of obstruction blocking the intersection ahead. The lights went green, we stayed still. The lights went red, we stayed still. Green, red, green, red, green - aha - we're moving. We had almost reached the intersection when the lights went red again, but our resourceful driver carried on going. We reached the middle of the crossroads and got stuck.

Now we were blocking the road. Nobody could move, because there was a big red bus across both lanes. Oh, that didn't stop them trying. One determined motorist managed to squeeze the front end of his car into the tiny gap ahead of the bus. Stalemate. Gridlock. Green. Red. Green. Red. Green.

A woman got up and stood at the side doors, dragging her four-year-old with her. The kid started playing with the bright yellow webbing belt attached to the doors.

"Don't play with that, Jamie. I said don't play with that. Come away from the doors, Jamie. I'm not telling you again. Come away from the doors. I'm not telling you again. I'm not telling you again. I'm not telling you again."

The more she yanked him away from the doors, the more stubbornly determined he became, screaming, kicking, yelling, trying to reach the doors. The man sitting next to me starts drumming his fingers on the railing. "Will you stop that," I wanted to shout, till I noticed that my fingers were doing the same.

Green. Red. Green. Red. "I'm not telling you again, Jamie."


No comments: