Wednesday, August 26, 2009

A close, odd encounter

I was sitting near the stairs on the upper deck of a cross-harbour bus on route 101. I was sitting in the window seat, with my bag on the aisle seat. The bus was half empty. Most of the two-seat benches had only one person in them, typically in the window seat, like I did.

As the bus was approaching the tunnel from Wan-chai, I was startled by a sudden voice, ”Excuse me, may I sit here?” The owner of the voice was a young lady, seemingly in her 20s, holding a couple of bags. She was probably sitting somewhere in the back, since she approached my bench from behind. I had no reason to say no, even though I felt it was rather odd. So I placed my bag on my lap; and she sat down beside me. She had a seat before; so why did she move? And why did she choose to sit beside me? Perhaps she intended to get off the bus after the bus passes through the tunnel; and she simply wanted to get closer to the stairs, so that she could get off quicker when the time comes? Perhaps she was trying to escape from some harassment or perceived danger - and she felt safer next to someone, even a total stranger?

To avoid any possible misunderstandings, I moved closer to the window, leaving about half a foot between us. Nothing happened. She didn't move. But I still couldn’t relax.

As the bus exited the tunnel, the young lady made no effort to get up. So I did. As soon as I left the bench, what did she do? She got up, moved forward a couple of rows, and sat down beside another man!

She was still there after I exited the bus.

Can someone explain that?


Anonymous said...

Well, was it after the meeting with me? If the girl did not move to sit with another man, I would have thought that you are still having your charm! Ann

StephenC said...

Yeah, right after the meeting.

I am flattered by the "charm" comment. But I suspect that wasn't the reason behind the young lady's actions. :)