Now that I am finally back in Seattle, I get to once again enjoy the pleasures that are a 40-minutes bus ride to/from work each day. 40 minutes is a long time to think, ponder, listen to music, play on your blackberry, or just sleep, but anyone who takes mass transit in a crowded city can agree that all of the aforementioned tasks directly depend on the company sitting near you on the bus.
6:55AM on this Monday morning I got on the 550 to Bellevue and found myself a nice window seat near the front of the bus. I was all settled in and ready to catch-up on my Google-reader list on my blackberry when a chubby (not obese, just pleasantly plump) Hispanic man dressed in sweats; as if he just woke up; got on at the next stop and all too eagerly took the vacant seat next to me.
I am by no means claustrophobic, nor do I underestimate the lack of personal space on a crowded rush-hour bus, but this man sat in a wide stance and clearly stretched into my seat on purpose. If this man sat with his legs any wider I would have thought he was practicing the splits in hopes of joining the US Men’s Gymnastic team.
As I held my laptop bag and purse in my lap and proceeded to huddle against the window in the 1′ of barely liveable space the man had left for me I noticed a smell coming from the man that was all too familar (If only the internet was sophisticated enough to link a scratch’n’sniff in this slot!)
At first I thought; is this some cheap drug store cologne that I’ve smelt while out at the bars? Perhaps it was just cigarette smoke? I am always a little stuffy in the morning after the cold walk to the bus station so I figured my nose was not fully functioning yet… but only a few seconds later….and ephiphany! I knew the scent that was sitting next to me. (According to a bunch of scientist at some big-name science school scents and smells are one of the largest triggers for emotional memories) A name immediately popped in my head (a former boyfriend who I’ll spare the embarassment of naming) and recognized the complex smell of cigarettes, liquor (namely redbull & vodka) and strong cologne trying to cover it up. Ahh, the memories which I moved 3000 miles away to forget were flooding back.
As I sat in my inch left of space on the crowded early moring bus, and remembered times which I so longed to forget another question jumped into my head….what the heck is someone doing wreaking of alcohol at 6:55am on a Monday morning?!?!?!