More than ever, I think that my legs want to do me in.
Yesterday, I was getting off the buss, heading to the bookstore to buy the new Stephen King novel. I stepped off the buss and felt the ground rush up to meet my face.
Or rather, my body rushed down to meet it.
I had stepped off the back of the buss with my right leg and it had given away completely. I slammed onto the ground, the breath taken out of me, and my feet and part of my legs slid underneath the buss.
I felt a rumble above my legs. The buss was preparing to move away, with part of me underneath it.
The entire time, as I am lying there, my legs spasming full force now, no one offered to help me. I lay there, struggling to get back up on my feet with dignity, and no one offered to lend me a hand. No one asked if I was okay, no one bothered to tell me the buss was beginning to move.
They all just looked at me, stared. One woman even laughed and began to point. I tried to pull my legs out from under the buss, tried to move.
Thankfully, a woman towards the front of the buss yelled for the buss driver to stop. She waved at him and pounded on the front door. “Someones fallen back there,” she said. “Don’t move yet, he’s fallen.”
This made more people stare, those to absorbed in their own worlds who hadn’t noticed in the first place. They all looked, stared, gawked, but no one offered to step forward, no one helped.
The woman at the front of the buss watched, waited, while I got up with difficulty, feeling my cheeks flush. She gave the driver the okay sign and then came towards me. “Are you okay?” she asked.
She was older, perhaps fifty or so. She had lovely brown hair that peeked out from underneath a knit cap. “Yes,” I told her. “Thank you so much for helping me.” I wanted to reach out and touch her, make contact with her some how, to convey my thanks. “I don’t know what I would have done without you.”
“Don’t mention it.” she said. “You would have done the same for me.”
“Yes, I would have.”
“More than I can say for any of the fuckers here.” she said. “Fuckers. People fucking suck.”
“You don’t.” I said. “Thank you.” The words seemed too small, incapable of conveying my thanks.
She reached out and touched me, took my hand. “You walk carefully, okay dear?”
I nodded and watched her walk away.