Taking the Bus to School
For ten years I traveled by bus to school. The half hour travel from home to school and back was the best part of my day. It was the only time in the day when we were not supervised by elders. It was the time we threw ink at each other, poured water down someone’s shirt or stuck bubblegum on someone’s hair. It was the time we were wild and free and we felt that the world was in the palm of our hands.
Birthday parties happened on the ride back from school with the birthday girl distributing sweets to everybody. One had to obey the rules of hierarchy in the bus which meant that the older girls sat at the back and the younger ones, in front. Another golden rule was that come what may no one squealed on the other. Our parents sent us by bus because it was safe, convenient, and it saved on fuel. It also gave them time to do more productive things. Traveling by bus meant a lot more to us. It meant exchanging notes with each other, gossiping about teachers, playing Dumb charades and Antakshari, but most importantly, poking fun at the other vehicle drivers on the road.
We took the same route every day and it almost always took us the same amount of time. We woke up in time and made sure never to miss the bus because it was the best part of our day.