That is when he always felt most alive. When the air rushed through his hair. When he saw the world whiz past him in a sequence of blurs. When he felt the sheer exhilaration of speed.
When he felt that he was suspended in space – feeling light, yet rooted.
He always enjoyed his journeys on the footboard of that bus. But not for Those tiring long hours of standing.
The pollution, the dust, the grime.
Being a constant lookout for the driver. But for moments like these.
The several trips they made seemed tolerable only because of this. He always waited for the highways. Those were stretches of road he could stretch himself – extend his arm that clasped the handle of the door, outstretch the other arm, teeter at the edge of the last step…and take in the road and the winds, all to himself.
He was used to the typical stares and the perplexed looks on the faces of passengers… like right now. They probably think he’s absurd, weird or plain mad, he thought. He chuckled. As he looked inside the bus, he noticed a girl staring at him. That look in her eyes - he could not define. She did not seem shocked or amazed. And yet, her eyes were fixed on him, anticipating something. Ignoring that, he stretched his hands out and swung outside to catch the breeze.
The sound of a thud was heard. The bus screeched to a halt a few metres ahead.