Monday, February 9, 2009

Adventures in the Back of the Bus



So today on my return trip on the Taichung City Transit System, I had someone to sit next to.

Two stops after where I stepped on (New Bus Pass in hand, purchased and refillable - of course - at 7-11), a portly hoodlum of 4 12 year old Taiwanese boys waddled to the back towards the only four seats available.

Three of them sat down fast, and one was left standing, staring at the only seat open near his friends: the one next to mine.

I glanced up from my book (Three Cups of Tea, a great read).

We made eye contact.

I looked at the seat next to me.
I looked back up at him.
I nodded at the seat next to me.

He looked at the seat.
Looked at me.
And with wide eyes, shook his head "No" enthusiastically.

I shrugged, and returned to my book.

Now only a few stops away from my destination, the boy worked up some nerve and crept towards me. He backed in and lowered himself down onto the furthest most corner of the bus-seat.

Accomplishment.

I couldn't see his face, but I could see him beaming reflected off of the faces of his three friends across the aisle. He turned his head at the neck, "Hi."
"Hey kid, how are ya?" Then it happened.

High five.

We were friends forever. I had to leave him all too soon though. But after I swiped my card and descended down the stairs to the curb, I turned to see eager eyes and two thumbs up pressed against the window in my direction.

It's good to have friends.

16 comments:

Gavin said...

Thats certainly made my week! I'm way too introverted, I ache for my very own 'high five' moments. I can barely believe this really happened, Irish people are so repressed for this to happen would nearly make the news.

Lumen Accipe Et Imperit (I feel its appropriate, and I just want to use it)

insomniaclolita said...

TOO CUTE, Chase. :)

floreta said...

so cute.
these small connections are important.
funny that you are reading three cups of tea and i had mentioned it recently. i ought to finish reading that..

Don said...

Fun post. Very likable main character. (My nephew is described by his mother as: He-never-met-a-stranger.) I'll bet you strike up conversations in elevators! (Me too.) People are fun.

Rachel Tamed said...

Sometimes even a thumbs up from a little kid can turn the worst feelings around. That tiny bit of acceptance goes a long way.

And of course, inflatable, light-up Jesus loves children :)

the girl in stiletto said...

LOL you cant be too scary looking that a child had to gather a lot of courage to sit next to you, no?

or could it be that you towered like a giant that a small taiwanese kid got scared.

hmm. just wondering LOL. no offense :)

nice blog btw.

SuzANNE said...

Congrats on making something so simple sound so significant. You get a high-five and two thumbs up for that one.

almost loved said...

Don't you just love random, out of nowhere high fives? Must have took a lot of courage for that kid to do that.

Young Traveler said...

Three Cups of Tea = Great book.

Also, kids are great. You + that cool kid? I'm surprised the bus could contain that much awesomeness.

BLOGitse said...

Great! So cute!
As you're a foreigner he was 'waiting' for your step...and you did it!
Good for you! :-)

Attaining Me said...

This is the first time i have been to your blog and how wonderful it was to read the first post and be left with a very evident smile.

I look forward to reading more.

RazzberryMomma said...

So cute! You really are a wonderful writer. Anyone that can turn a high five in the back of a bus into a triumphant tale of friendship is amazing imo!

Kali said...

HA that is cute. No 12 year olds like that here. Any 12 year olds you meet on the bus are likely to be down the back smoking joints or making out. Where did the innocence go??

I think I need an injection of cuteness. Maybe it's time for a trip to Taiwan.

Rachel Tamed said...

Three Cups of Tea was probably the most inspiring story I have ever read. I finished the entire thing in one evening, and spent two weeks trying to figure out how to get a donation to Greg Mortensen for the work he is doing.

Taipei Express said...

Wow, sounds fun. Gotta love Taiwan. (:

Taipei Express said...

Probably the best part about Taiwan: the people.