Crumbs From the Corner: Adventures in Woolgathering

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

No Chance

"We all feel the riddle of the earth without anyone to point it out. The mystery of life is the plainest part of it."
-G. K. Chesterton

In order to catch a bus to the local library I must cross the road- always a precarious venture- and make my way along a footpath for three hundred feet before I reach the bus stop.
If that footpath should ever happen to be coated in a film of ice, sprinkled with clumps of snow and sand and salt and resemble a muddy, slippery slope of certain doom, then I am obliged to set out a little earlier and proceed with increased caution in order to get myself to the designated point in one whole piece.
I stuck my nose out of the driveway this morning to ensure that all was well before I crossed the road. To my great dismay I saw the bus- my bus- already hurtling along on the other side, bound for the library, of course not stopping at any point unless a person happened to be waiting there, and I could not see anybody.
The early fellow had just negated all my well-coordinated hurry and haste.
I gave up immediately, having temporarily considered a mad dash across that deadly glass- a move that would likely be, if not fatal, then futile, for I surely stood no chance.
Before I returned to the comfort of my home, I observed that the bus had stalled at traffic lights within a few feet of- how utterly, magically convenient- the bus stop.
I am loathe to run after a bus: I fear I look foolish when I fail to catch it, but my spirit of adventure roared back to life: I tore across the road- as much as one can tear when leaping over the rough patches and endeavouring to miss the ice and looming vehicles- and still the bus had not moved. There was yet a tantalising, narrow wedge of possibility and I proceeded along the menacing conveyor belt of endless snow, hopping along and wondering, as I attempted to remain upright, when the driver was going to start moving again and put me out of my misery so that I might go home and lick my wounds, for I surely stood no chance.
I could hardly believe my good fortune when I arrived, weak-kneed and gasping, at the still-idle bus. I waved frantically, the doors slid open, I stumbled on, thanked the driver loudly, purchased a ticket and selected a seat, which I sank into with a hefty sigh.
And then two souls, a man and a woman who must have been waiting nearby- in my panic I had not seen them- ambled up the steps with a distinct and astonishing lack of urgency.
As the bus pulled away with at least one rather grateful passenger, I wondered how on earth I had acquired a seat against all odds.
But I also left ample room to muse on the most intricate riddle of them all: just how did I propel myself across the glazed road and down the slushy, ice-stricken street and onto the bus and into my seat before two people had time to shuffle from the bus stop?


Pappy said...

Well that's easy. The vortex created by your speeding self knocked the old couple down. You were already seated by the time they regained their feet and crept cautiously to the bus. How could you? Pappy

Pauline said...

what a mental picture you have left me - maybe pappy is right and you knocked those two folks on their keisters...

Anonymous said...

Don't you just love those bus drivers. They play games like that here too. I've gotten to the point where I don't bother running anymore.


Phyllis Hunt McGowan said...

Texican, there we go. I knew there was a good reason, and I suspected you would supply it.

Pauline, I think I did. Well, too late now to pretend it didn't happen. ;)

Steve, I usually don't run :) Because I think I'll never make it. I think that because it meant missing the library and not getting books, I made a big effort, but otherwise I'd just wait for the next one in my own home. Or stay in for the day!

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