Social Distancing

The man, 30-something, points to his wrist:  “Brah, what ti – ”

I interrupt him, knowing where he’s going, and point to my naked wrist.  “Sorry, I don’t have a watch.”

He nods and turns to stare out at Ala Moana Beach, his arms crossed. He must be hot in that leather jacket.

We’re sitting on opposite ends of the bus stop bench.  It feels like less than six feet, but I’m too tired and it’s too hot to stand and wait.  His mask makes him look like he’s ready to rob a bank should the opportunity arise.  I don’t know what my mask makes me look like.

Then I remember I have a cell phone.  I hardly ever use it as a phone, just as a camera and to listen to music.  I hate the phone call part of phones.  He doesn’t have a phone?  He looks as if he could afford one.  Then again, my friend Jim doesn’t have one.  Jim hates phones even more than I do.

I pull out mine, check the time.  “It’s three-thirty,” I say to the man.

He keeps looking straight ahead toward Ala Moana Beach.

I say more loudly, “Excuse me, it’s three-thirty.”  Weird.  Is he deaf?  I shrug and give up.

We wait.  A phone rings, it’s not mine.  I look around.  We’re the only two people there.

The man reaches in his pocket and pulls out a phone.  He does have a phone. While he’s listening, he turns and looks at me from behind his dark glasses.  He says not one word, just listens.

The bus arrives.  I let him get on first. I don’t want to give him the chance to sit down next to me.

He’s still listening to someone, saying nothing.  Taking a seat in the very back, he sits there, phone to his ear.  I sit way the hell up front.  All the time, I feel like his eyes are burning holes in the back of my head.

I chance a quick glance back.  He’s off the phone now, sitting with his arms crossed, staring straight ahead.  Or is he staring at me? It’s hard to tell. I can’t see his eyes. Geez.  I look up front to make sure this bus says it’s monitored by cameras.  The bus driver doesn’t look too tough.  Not tough like that man. I wonder whether I can depend on the driver’s help if I’m attacked.

The “stop requested” light and voice announcement come on.  I glance backward again.  He’s standing at the rear exit.  The door opens and I know he’s looking at me.  He nods, then disappears.

Talk about a close call.

* * * * *

Aloha #WriterSunday. Today’s #WritingPrompt is

social distancing

Use it to inspire a piece of writing of any kind and them post that piece somewhere I can read it. I’d love to wee what you write : )

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