From Door to Door

I meander out my front door, closing it after me.
I jog through rain, past the glowing 7-11 to the bus stop on the main drag.
My local bus stop offers no protection, not even a nearby doorway.
I love living in Seattle.

I wait.
My glasses collect droplets.
The sky begins to shift from black to dark gray.
I need a wide-brimmed hat, but no hat maker I know of makes them big enough for my head.

A bus careens into view and finally stops in front of me.
I get on, showing my pass.
I ride past the zoo and the retirement home to the transfer point.
I stumble off the bus and over to the covered waiting area.

I wait.
I can see patches of dark blue between the light gray clouds.
A bicycle hisses by at almost the speed of traffic.
I wonder what sort of suspension system a Woodpecker's has to handle all that agitation.

A bus crests the hill and comes to a halt in front of a woman wearing too much make up.
I climb on, showing my pass again.
People take out their textbooks and articles.
At the next stop, an ex-girlfriend sits down next to me.
I remember why we stopped talking six years ago.

We make small talk anyway.
"I bus for about an hour and a half to get to work," I say.
"That's a long way. I'd hate that."
I smile, imagining what she would say if she were a Californian: "Don't you have a car?"

I soon remember why I didn't stay in touch with her.
Most of the bus, including her, gets off at the UW.
I ride a little farther, to the Mountlake freeway station.
I saunter down the stairs from the bus stop on the overpass to the shelter at freeway-level.

I wait.
The cars edge by at an inconsistent five miles-per-hour, one person per vehicle.
I like not driving to work.
I think I see one truck with two people in it.
No, never mind - he has a dog navigation system.

A bus finally breaks free of traffic to pull into the station, and we all pile on.
People with seats take out notebook PCs and books.
I turn into an reeses monkey.
The water looks a little choppy as the bus crosses the floating bridge.

An older man offers me the seat next to him.
I decline politely, indicating my girth as the issue.
At his insistence, I put my backpack down on the seat.
A little later, I realize my hands and fingers form a base 6 system on which I can count to 35.

As the bus approaches my stop, I pick up my backpack.
I give the older man a smile, which he gives back while remaining seated.
I get off the bus with the crowd this time, showing my pass once more,
and walk across the street, through the rain, to the door of my work.

This write-up was brought to you by the letter 'B', and by the number '6'. This write-up was made possible by a generous donation from the "Active Voice Foundation" ("We change the world, one sentence at a time") and by "Readers Like You".