Even though riding public transportation is quite nice (I’m enjoying not fighting with traffic!), it provides some very interesting experiences as well. Take, for example, the old gentleman who I encountered upon departing the subway yesterday. I was looking at the map just to make sure I knew where I was headed, and he asked if I was lost. I replied, no. I knew where I was headed. The rest of the conversation goes like this:
“I can take you there.”
“Merci, No. I’m fine.”
“You’re not from Montreal, are you?”
“Where are you from?”
“Florida.” (damn… I shouldn’t have answered this.)
“Oh. Which hotel are you staying at?”
“I’ve gotta go.”
“What? You don’t know which hotel you stay at?”
At this point I turn and walk away. The guy creeps me out.
Encounter deux. The bus I ride back to the hotel is full of regulars. Including one rather round gentleman who joins the passengers at the second stop. By this time, most — if not all — the seats are full. The round man insists on standing next to me. Every day. No matter what seat I’m in. And then he runs to the front when a certain seat is empty. Freaky.
Encounter trois. One of the stops after work, a passenger holds up the line arguing that another passenger is “Schtupid. He’s a schtupid pershon. Schtupid. Schtupid. Very schtupid.” I don’t know if he was paranoid schizophrenic or drunk, but I was glad when he got off the bus.
And then there’s the finding out where to stand to best get a place on the subway train. I learned the first car is never full. Ever. Everyone packs into the middle and is too lazy to walk to the front. So if I make it in time, I’ll go there. And hope that the crazies don’t follow me.