Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Day #206: The one on the overground

Now that I am settled into my routine at work I can travel to school the same way each day.
1. Depart house at 7:30
2. Walk down Upper St. (12 min.)
3. Wait 8 minutes (sometimes a little less if I swing in for a Starbie's (that is British for Starbucks)
4. Board the overground train at 7:50
5. Arrive at the Finchley Road & Frognal Stop at 8:13 on the nose (unless, of course, there is a train delay)
6. Absolutely haul ass up the hill and arrive to school by 8:15 sharp.  I am convinced that my jaunt up the hill takes longer than two minutes; however, there is some sort of time continuum I walk through everyday.  It's awesome.

I have journeyed this way consistently enough to know the people at Starbie's, recognize people on the street, and even wave to the girl who tried to screw us over when we got my cell phone (kill her with kindness is my modo!).  Usually on the overground, I cram myself into a corner, pull out my latest book, and zone out for 23 minutes.  But, one day last week I decided to break my routine....

It all started with a rancid smell.  We are talking the kind of smell that burns your eyes and catches in your throat.  This putrid reek startled me out of my reading coma and I looked up to find the source of this offensive odor.  As the crowds on the train buried their faces in their scarves, violently waved their hands in front of their noses, and coughed like a cat hacking up a hair ball, I noticed a man who had a slightly devious grin on his face. He half-heartedly held his nose in an attempt to blend in and be discreet.  However, in my mind he had been pegged.  He was Mr. Pooped-His-Pants.
Sidenote:  My immediate go-to with the Little Miss reference might stem from my recent time spent in the Early Childhood classrooms.  Forgive me.
As I chuckled to myself about Mr. Pooped-His-Pants I started to notice other comical scenes going on around me.  I decided to put down my copy of One Day (Yes, I am still reading this!  Emma and Dexter are not holding my attention like I thought they would) and have a look around.  What I found was a vast array of entertainment that I had, thus far, completely missed!  I couldn't believe it.  As I studied the crowd I found the most eclectic group of people I had ever seen.

First there was Mr. I-Have-No-Ear-Drums:  This guy was dressed like a Jnco Jeans advertisement as he was clearly embracing his inner Kenny Fisher.  His massive lime-green headphones were strung out of his textured fuzzy backpack and music was absolutely BLASTING into his ears.  The song playing was C&C Music Factory's, "Everybody Dance Now" which further added to the comedy. It might as well have been Puff Daddy jamming out to TLC's, "Waterfalls!"  Kenny Fisher would have been so disappointed.  Mr. I-Have-No-Ear-Drums also disappointed his ENT doctor as, following the train ride, his ears were sure to have been deemed useless.  In fact, the song was so loud that a woman a few feet away was absent-mindedly bobbing her head in beat with the song.
Next I noticed Mrs. I-Don't-Know-About-NHS:  This poor woman was as sick as a dog - sweaty forehead, hacking cough, sneezing.  Of course her hands were all over the handrails and I made a quick mental reminder to get myself a pocket-sized hand sanitizer.  The people on either side of her paid no attention.  I was like, "Both of you just contracted hepatitis and you don't seem to care!"  We have free health care, I literally don't understand.
Across the way was Little Miss I-Just-Got-My-First-Corporate-Job:  Beautiful girl, probably 21, long sleek hair, way too tight pencil skirt, smart collared button down, six inch heels (dead give away in London), and a Burberry briefcase.  In her hand was, of course, an i-phone (no cover...sleek and black) and she was busy at work, probably working on her latest deposition or an email to the CEO...nope, Angry Birds.
Down the train car a little ways was Mrs. I-Need-Super Nanny-Fast:  This was an exhausted 30-something woman with a 4-year-old in hysterics.  This child was face down in the middle of the commuter packed train car absolutely kicking and screaming.  The more the woman tried to help, the worse it became.  The child was screaming, "Give me my candy!!!!!!!"  The mother was frantic and negotiating, "If you get up I will get you candy when we get off the train!!!" Oh geeze - Super Nanny...come quick!
Next I spotted Mr. I-Hate-My-Job:  This poor guy was in his suit ready to go.  He was run-down, beat-down, definitely was not carrying a Burberry briefcase, and staring blankly into space.  I think if he "accidentally" missed his stop he would have been thrilled.  I said a little prayer for Mr. I-Hate-My-Job.  I hope that he walks in to work tomorrow and yells, "I QUIT!!!"  I envision him throwing on a Hawaiian spooner, starting a successful internet company, and working the rest of his life from home with a mai-tai in his hand.  Here's to you Mr. I-Hate-My-Hob.
To my right was Mrs. I-Had-A-Rough-Night:  This woman was on her cell phone and had clearly been burned by her friend out at a club the night before.  She was still in her clubbing clothes and would have probably killed someone for a toothbrush.  There was a lot of head-bobbing going on and I predict that under her sparkle cardigan was a t-shirt bedazzled with the word, "DRAMA!"  See, her friend Deeana was supposed to wait for her by the lou and left her there to go get another drink.  Deeana is always doing stuff like that and Mrs. I-Had-A-Rough-Night is just fed up.  Can YOU believe Deeana got another drink???  What a lousy friend!
Last, but not least, there was Mrs. Up-In-Everyone's-Business:  That was me.

Lesson Learned: Sometimes you should just put down your book and take a look around.

No comments:

Post a Comment