Twelve

‘Exams are going on?’ the elderly looking conductor humbly enquires, whose bus I used to take to travel everyday to college in the time of my engineering, the days he came to take notice of me when I’d just miss the bus and rush behind the large motor to be stopped by him, catch up at uneven times like today and be asked ‘How are you early today?’, ‘Exams?’

Subtly inferior, he normally wears shirts of nylon material with sorrel brown pants.
His words were in fog and I didn’t want to bother him to rerun them a second time. I mumbled with a smile to which he nodded approvingly and moved away giving my ticket.
In the second row, seat adjacent to mine, I saw a family of Muslim – father, mother and their baby boy – contended in their scant space.
The little one was bouncing up and down in his dad’s lap while the father was engrossed in scrolling over photos and conversations on his WhatsApp.
While as his dad continues with the phone and does not seem to show any interest in entertaining his chubby little one, he goes on to look around at passengers seated in the bus, surveying each of them before him with his moon shaped curious eyes. A while later, he was seen drawing lines and curves with his delicate fingers on the backside of the preceding seat.
The mother takes a selfie having her husband pose and son force-pose. In time the baby was asleep against it’s dad’s chest, grabbing fistful of his shirt.

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