To the Woman on the Bus,
Since when did “first come first served” come before common decency?
As I joined you in the bus stop to await the bus, I smiled at you and noticed your empty pushchair, and the two young children waiting with you and your friend? your sister? I’m not sure. Another full-grown woman, at least, happily gossiping with you as your boys played. I’d guess they were around Georgie’s age, three or four.
The bus approached and I hoped there would be space for both of us. Lydia, just turned two, was in her pushchair and as she insisted on wearing Peppa Pig slippers for this outing, I didn’t really want to get her out.
Space for one pushchair on the bus. Oh dear. The adult with you and the boys jump on the bus and race to the backseat. The bus driver asks you to fold your buggy but you march on by, park it up, and walk on to the end of the bus.
I pause in the entrance to the bus, ask “is there space for us?” and the bus driver opens his door to peer back, and asks you if there is a child in your pushchair.
You ignore him.
I smile at the bus driver, tell him “no”, but not to worry, and pay my fare. We get on the bus, I empty out the basket, pop Georgie on a seat, unbuckle and lift out Lydia, and sit down holding her while I fold the pushchair.
Thank heaven for the one-handed fold.
All the time you keep up a running commentary from the back of the bus, just loud enough for me to hear, but not quite reaching the bus driver – but definitely within earshot of the four young children. “I don’t see why I should fold my buggy. It’s FIRST COME, FIRST SERVED. We were here first. We got on first. F*ck’s sake. Stupid f*cking woman. F*cking bus driver.”
Since when did smiling politely and not complaining, just getting on with it so I can get my tired kids home, make me stupid?
I was a single woman on the bus with an obviously tired out pre-schooler and a toddler in a buggy (with her slippers on!). You had two boys who obviously didn’t need their hands holding getting on the bus, or help sitting down, and another adult to help supervise. You didn’t know how far I would be travelling with a two year old balancing on my knee, bags by my feet, and one hand balancing a hastily folded pushchair against my knee.
It’s not like I got on the bus a stop after you. We both got on at the same time.
I can’t help but feel like there is something wrong with this story. It would have been so easy for the other adult with you to watch your boys while you folded your buggy, but nope, you just shot glares at me and my children, and at the bus driver, while swearing your pretty little head off.
I’m probably being over sensitive today (I’m tired, and the kids & I are all still a bit poorly) but this is exactly why I hate taking the bus sometimes. I always try to be polite and helpful to other travellers, but there is so often some rude idiot who thinks they should get to do whatever they want and ignore how hard it makes life for everyone else.
I could have kicked up a fuss, but it would have just made my day worse, and the girls’ bus ride unpleasant. Not to mention it would have been a pain in the bum for the bus driver who really shouldn’t need to get out of his seat to tell off a grown woman for behaving like a small child.
When I got off the bus, the driver thanked me, rolled his eyes, and gave me a grateful smile. At least I made his day a little better, and hopefully it will reassure him that not every passenger is a selfish child at heart.
Until next time – have a great day!
I’ve added this to Mummy From The Heart’s new “Dear So and So” linky – which is actually a revival of an old linky, previously hosted by a blogger who has now kicked the habit.