Since working in town I have had to get a lot of buses which in Scotland I wouldn’t mind - as they seem to have grasped the idea of a public service for the working class - but not in Peterborough. This leaves me getting in half an hour early at least and today, with only 4 buses going from my village into town I’m in 2 hours early, I’m catching up with you wonderful blog readers. Also with this in mind it should have been no surprise to me that the bus was 20 minutes late, or that I would be annoyed by it, but when I got on the bus something happened which I did not expect - a bomb shell, if you will - and it brought the Stagecoach-rant in my head to a stand-still...
The story begins yesterday when I was ever waiting for the bus in the dry bitter morning weather and two older ladies walked to the stop and settled themselves to the left of where I was sitting. One of them leaned my way and said how she had just been commenting on how smart I looked (work trousers/shoes and winter coat/pashmina) to which I did kind of blush and say ‘thank you’ - I’m not quite used to compliments from strangers but it sure does brighten the morning a bit! She went on to say that I had a pretty face and how I’ve got everything going for me and probably had a line of boys after me and I said chuckling ‘may be, but only one that matters’
Long story short they were lovely ladies and I said how I’d lived in Eye my whole life, at the end of the street that I had seen them walking- the one with the porch. When we got into town we went our own ways but this morning I got on the bus and there they were again. I sat down and noticed the older one Hilary was on one of the side seats, she said hi and remarked about how we’re always going to bump into each other now. They were only going a few stops from when I got on so stood up to depart and she said with a kind face ‘I know where you live now. We figured it out. It was your Mum who died wasn’t it?’ And there it was.
We were not alone on the bus, by the way, it was actually almost full and it wasn’t quiet enough for her to whisper across the 5 seats between us so I guess that fact was learned to a lot of others this morning as well. In a mixture of surprise and embarrassment I replied ‘yes, yes it was’ and they got off the bus.
I was surprised because of where it was said but also because it didn’t make me want to sink into the ground. I don’t think there is anything that can prepare you for things like that, but 19 months on it’s really not so bad. Yes, yes it was my Mum’s hearse they saw creeping up the road with the man in a top hat walking in front, and yes, I was in the back of the limo dressed in black. But here I am, getting up at dawn and going to my new job, I am making new friends and loving old ones like never before.
Also, I saw this on Facebook and thought it was pretty accurate!