For the last several weeks, I’ve been taking the bus in the morning.
As my mother-in-law’s needs rise in inverse proportion to her decline in ability, Kevin stays with her in the morning until her aide arrives. He’s made arrangements with his employer to that end. So we don’t drive in together anymore. It’s a morning ritual that I miss, but understand needs to be set aside for the time being.
Nothing in this life is permanent, and expectations must be managed, if not jettisoned altogether. This is certainly something we’ve come to understand over the last 3 years.
So I’m back on the bus. The bus full of bons mots which I had started capturing via Twitter a couple of years ago, before we started driving in. I suppose I should start paying attention again. Mainly I’ve been sitting in the back, headphones on, listening to a lot of 80s industrial.
I’m part of a crowd of “regulars” now: the folks that are catching the 8:20. There’s the lady with the plushie TARDIS dangling from her backpack, the conspiracy theorist who starts hollering about starting his own monarchy whenever the bus is late, the teen girl in the private school uniform having very loud and very dark conversations on her iPhone.
I notice them, but until this morning it hadn’t really occurred to me that I was being noticed in kind.
I bought a “new” dress last weekend at a local thrift store. The dress in question was actually on the rack the employees had designated for “Halloween Costumes!” This happens a lot, actually; clothing that other people would only wear on October 31st tends to be clothing I’d wear to a board meeting. Here’s the dress:
I’m guessing the thrift store staff put it on the Costume Rack, thinking “Minnie Mouse,” or – perhaps – “Rockabilly.” At any rate, I’m wearing it right now, and was therefore wearing it at the bus stop this morning when one of my fellow regulars, a woman who frequently rides with Plushie TARDIS Lady, gave me the once-over and said, “So…polka dots today, huh?”
It struck me as kind of an odd thing to say by way of greeting. And as I made my way to the back of the 108, I thought, “Do she and Plushie TARDIS Lady take note of what I’m wearing every morning?”
Do they notice when I switch up my hairdo? My handbag? Good God – did they notice that I was carrying a knockoff Louis Vuitton bowler yesterday?
This must be how the Kardashians feel.