So Spring/Summer has arrived (probably for a brief visit- after all, we are in Britain!) and the bus is smokin’, particularly in the evenings. I quite like seeing all the people dressed up for summer and the cooling breeze coming through the windows whilst sitting on the upper deck. I don’t like the sound of the air con at the back – it’s so loud! The seats as well can begin to feel a bit sticky and prickly when it’s so warm.
I’ve got a bit of a love/hate relationship with my bus at the moment. I love it, because of this project and how many nice people I’m meeting and all of the stories I am gathering, but at the same time, I’m really under pressure with other work deadlines, and the length of the journey is getting me down. I’ve taken to listening to the radio off my phone – which only works on the upper deck – and that seems to pass the time quite nicely. I normally do some reading on the bus in the morning, and just sit thinking and snoozing on the bus on the way home.
On the way back tonight, I decided to start looking out for how people hail down the bus. Really fun to watch actually so I might do some more observations at a future date and create a classification system with diagrams and pointy arrows. Here are my observations:
Fairfield Bus Station: (hailing a 131) little girl clicked her fingers and jumped then clicked her fingers again
New Malden High Street: man performed abrupt thrust with hand and immediately returned hand to his side
New Malden The Fountain: man gave an (almost) longing look towards the bus – ‘please stop!’
St James’ Church: lady grasped out (as if walking in the pitch black), clutching forward
Blake’s Lane: youngish man adjusted hair, vaguely waved down the bus and then adjusted his hair again before boarding
The Plough: middle-aged gentleman straightforwardly put his arm out, palm flat and facing driver
In other news, there is a new bus stop! Thank you to Roger and Jamie for pointing out to me that between Lindsay Road and Longfellow Road, Worcester Park, there will soon be a new bus stop, ‘Brabham Court’. I clearly haven’t been observant of late! Not sure how you pronounce it so just waiting on the announcer lady to have her voice recorded to find out. My project really is about ‘living heritage’ as things are changing all the time! This new development has reiterated to me the need to find out more about the history of the physical route – I am hoping that Transport for London’s Archives may help.