Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Missing the Bus

For audio click here 
I remembered the first time we parted. The long lingering kiss, the tears in our eyes, the whispers of I love you. the fingertips waiting until the last moment to part. This time it was a quick kiss, no tongue, and a see you soon. I watched her drive away and pulled my hat on, then headed into the coach station with my holdall shivering in the breeze. 
I looked around for the departure board but couldn’t see one, so looked at the three coaches in the lot. 
“Prague?” I asked one driver. He shook his head. 
“Prague?” The next one shook his head too. 
“No,” the driver said. 
The three coaches packed up and drove out and I hugged myself while waiting for the bus to Prague to show up. 
The seconds turned into minutes, the minutes turned into hours, but no other busses came or went. The whole place was deserted except for the tramps who had set up home in the waiting room, and me. 
I couldn’t figure out what had gone wrong. I was in the right place, I’d got there fifteen minutes early, and no other buses had come or gone. I replayed the conversations I’d had with the coach drivers. 
Fuck, the Czech for yes is no. I’d fallen for the oldest trick in the book. 
There was nothing left to do but walk back to Hanka’s. Two hours ago, I thought I’d never see her again. Maybe there was a silver lining, maybe my unexpected return would be like a second coming and give us chance to turn the whole relationship around. 
I kept switching my bag from hand to hand so I could stuff the other one deep in my pocket and my hat was so far down it was almost a balaclava. As for my toes, well I had no idea if they were still attached or not. I kept walking through the snowflakes until I reached the tower block where Hanka lived. I opened the door and got in the lift, stamping my feet to try to get the blood moving. 
I smiled as rapped on her door. 
“George?” Hanka said, and looked over her shoulder. 
“The bus didn’t turn up,” I said. She didn’t need to know the level of my fuckwittery. 
“Can I come in? I’m fucking freezing.” 
“Yeah, um. I suppose. Come into the kitchen.” 
“Who is it?” A male figure came out of the bedroom. 
I was right, my unexpected return certainly had a lasting effect on our relationship. 

1 comment:

  1. I would love to be in the kitchen!
    There is a TV series here based on people´s true stories, I´ll translate it for you and send it to TV. But it needs to be continued:-)