Creative Non-Fiction Short Stories. :) Travel, Oldsters, Love, and Compassion.
This is perhaps the only time in recorded history when a woman has given a double-take to a man in a beige running suit and fanny pack.
He boards the bus and she catches him right away. Between glances, his scruffy neck flushes red as he blinks out of the graffiti-covered window. Then he notices that she saw what he had–that spark of someone else–and he becomes more confident, more curious. He meets her gaze and holds it.
The two entwined in the stare are probably strangers. She stands in a group of potential suitors, one guy standing close enough to have required some permission. This fickle dude had been leering at another girl’s legs until he notices the woman looking away. He reaches to rest his arm on the rail between the electric gaze, but she just grows taller, straightens her neck and stares at the young man in the running suit.
Around them, people shout and sigh, as these two create suspense in a tedious afternoon. He begins to shift and adjust his gold necklace, which the woman in her fashion patience also forgives. His gathered brow adds detail to his look, adds helplessness as he rings for his stop.
He stands and she shifts her jaw. He moves closely past her, but still heads for the exit. They whisper the local goodbye. She watches him leave through the closing doors, through the pedestrians he joins, and she disappears into a smile. Lost to her companions entirely, to all the other passengers merely moving from one place to another, she discovers something remote.
She should have followed him out, perhaps, or he should have taken a detour. Still, it was nice to admire what they did have instead: four minutes on a bus in a long contented glance. Boldness may have made a better film, but some love stories are more beautiful abridged.
-Novi Sad, Serbia.