Creative Non-Fiction Short Stories. :) Travel, Oldsters, Love, and Compassion.
I’ve got the same driver on my way back to Croatia. We catch the other’s glance in the mirror above his seat. He rolls his eyes at the pack of tourists who chat across the aisles so loudly that it feels we’re on a bus bound for elementary school. I try to cast back a look of sympathy and compassion.
We pass a woman selling produce on the side of the road. A local lady in the bus would like to buy some. The driver calls out the window to the woman, perhaps negotiating a deal. As he pulls the bus over, passengers watch the lady hustle across the street to fetch a bag of oranges. She is back to the bus in less than a minute, but the Italians now want to stock up as well. We’re halted for nearly 15 minutes–a man buying a bag and returning, so a woman and her sister opt to buy some as well, then a pair decides to check out the woman’s wares. The process wears thin on other passengers, who mumble about making connections out of Split.
The driver glances his impatience into the mirror and I smile again, shrugging. He enabled them after all. Yet, as we rolled away, careening over the mountain roads to make up for lost time, the scent of oranges filled the bus, and the Italians went quiet. A very wise stop after all.
–Bus from Medjugorje, Bosnia-Hercegovina to Split, Croatia.
It’s the same driver from this story on the way there. Even some of the same Italian tourists were a part of both scenes! https://thenicethingaboutstrangers.com/2013/09/25/groove-death-italians/