Assume you are the first person to get into a bus, from its origin. Where would you prefer to sit? Window? Aisle? Middle? Front? Back? Just behind the driver? On the last row? Beside the conductor?
Well, I’ll probably choose the one beside the conductor – the window seat. May be because that gives me a sense of pseudo authority. Conductor will not be at his seat during half the duration, which means the seat remains empty. Not many would bother to sit down on the conductor’s seat, due to the fear of losing out the pleasure of a (relatively) permanent seat. Only trouble is clueless prospective passengers checking with me if the bus would take them to some certain place or not. But that is fine with me. So my ideal bus journey would be the one when I am traveling by a window seat beside the conductor. That said, my joy couldn’t be explained when I found the above seat free when I boarded the bus from Sreekaryam to East Fort. Ha! Rejoice dear me, because I am on my favorite seat observing Trivandrum on the move. I settled, with my backpack now on my lap and waiting for the conductor to issue me my ticket. The bus crossed another major stop and all other seats were occupied by the time the conductor approached me demanding for the ticket. Shock !!
The bus had a female conductor!
I began to sweat. Big fat confusion doomed upon me. Should I stand up, or should I continue to hold the seat? I have to remain standing if I leave the seat and for sure others would stare at me. Some other might still stare at me if I did not stand. I was worried that if I did not get up would that amount to misconduct from my part? Would I be dragged to police station for ‘accidentally’ touching a female (albeit a bus conductor). Damn I forgot my hand kerchief as well, which I could use to cover my face from the eyes of media. Or may be the conductor is used to a male sitting next to her? What if she asks me to vacate the seat? I had to make a choice between my favourite seat and my pride. Seat or pride? Seat or pride? Pride took precedence. I was just about to get down at the next stop, and continue my journey in another bus. At the right moment my savior appeared in the form of an old man. He was asked to sit beside me – for the rest of the journey. Phew! I remained on my seat, proudly.
PS : Made up incident for the blog post.