Crap. I’m late again. One minute I have plenty of time, the next I have 1 minute to make a 7 minute walk to the bus stop. Not gonna happen. Sometimes if I’m feeling energetic, I’ll make a run for it. I must look like an absolute loon, running for a bus taking me to a place I’d rather not be for the next 8 hours. Anyway, today is not one of those days. I get to the bus stop in plenty of time for the next bus, having just missed the last bus by about 30 seconds.
The current bus is 5 minutes late. But this is the rule with bus travel. If you’re late, the bus is always 30 seconds early. If you’re early, the bus is undoubtably late. Today, when the bus eventually turns up, instead of sitting in the empty seats at the front of the bus, I make my way to the back. Mostly to get a good view of my fellow passengers so that I don’t miss anything potentially entertaining for the purposes of this blog.
When you’re a kid, the back of the bus is a highly sought after seat. The cool kids sit there and it is a place you earn your right to sit in. After you pass a certain age, the front of the bus is where you want to sit. You don’t have to push past people to get off and you’re less likely to have stuff thrown in your hair by a 13 year old trying to impress his mates.
The bus at this time in the morning is half school kids and half people commuting to work. This normally makes for dull bus journeys. Almost everyone is transfixed by their phone. Either they’re teenagers plugged into their music, each of them competing to see which one can perforate their ear drums first. Who needs hearing right?! The rest are face-booking, whats-apping or playing games. The adults are generally reading books (on their kindle app) or with their actual kindle. It’s mainly quiet and eerily so.
It is a completely different environment to when I used to catch the bus as a kid. Back then it was a loud mixture of boys shouting, girls giggling, shrieking and old women gossiping about which of their neighbours had recently died or was having an affair. Today it is very different. No one wants to sit next to a stranger and heaven forbid they try and talk to you. They become an instant weirdo. Well, who in their right mind would want to chat with another human being when you can sit in absolute silence and ignore the world around you?!
Teenagers these days are also a weird breed. Don’t get me wrong, when I was a teenager, I was pretty weird. But in a teenager way, not in a ‘I’m desperate to be an adult’ way. The girls carry proper handbags, slung over their forearm like they’re at a London fashion show. When I was that age, I had a rucksack or a satchel that was so heavily laden with pencil cases, exercise books, library books, P.E kits and maybe, if there was room, a kohl eyeliner and a heather shimmer lipstick. There is no way these girls can fit anything other than their phone, a bag of cheap makeup and maybe one book if they’re lucky. What are they doing at school?! The boys, if they do have a rucksack, looks like it isn’t carrying much. Also, what is it with the travel mugs?! I understand how busy office people don’t have time to drink their coffee before work, but school kids with a Costa travel mug casually sipping Columbian medium roast on their way to school? What possible need could they have for caffeine?! And if they’re starting with caffeine at the age of 14 years, what happens next? Snorting pro-plus at the back of the bus to stay awake for your driving test?! (Ok, I did actually do that once but I wouldn’t recommend it, even if it did mean that I passed my driving test…just).
I know what you’re thinking, I sound old. Well I feel old and I’d like to think I’m not even halfway through my life yet. As much as there are differences in the youth of today compared to when I was a kid, a lot is also the same. There’s still the same groups of townies, alternatives, nerds and posh kids. I’m sure they’re referred to differently now though. There is a TV programme I watch called ‘Some Girls’ which follows a group of teenage girl misfits in school life. They refer to a group of blond haired pretty girls as the ‘boob nazis’. Brilliant.
Anyway I remember that time in my life all too well. And it doesn’t make me for one minute want to go back and experience all that again though. The awkwardness, the breakups and makeups of friendship groups, the hormones, confusion and emotion of it all. No thanks! I’m sure if I have kids myself I’ll have to go through it all again anyway. This time I’ll have to be sympathetic. Is it considered good parenting if you tell your teenage kid to ‘man the fuck up’?
Well, those are my bus ramblings. Unfortunately nothing exciting has happened in the 3 days I’ve caught the bus this week. Sorry Debbie! For those of you who don’t know, I asked a bunch of my friends on Facebook to give me a topic to write a blog post about. The idea with the most likes wins. So this topic and title is dedicated to Debs. Who has more interesting, hilarious stories in her little finger than I think I’ve experienced in my lifetime. I think Debbie should write a guest blog post on here and put us all to shame! Although, a LOT would have to be highly censored…..
……to be continued!