Monday, May 01, 2006

How I know today is a holiday

I mean, I already knew it was a holiday because the kids didn't have school and the gym was on a different schedule. And Alex has been keeping up with the news of immigrants' May 1 plans in the US.

But even if none of that had been true, I would have known it was a holiday when I got on the bus to come home from the gym today. (Yes, the car is well and truly broke. I don't want to talk about it, but the word "overhaul" has been bandied about, along with the words "Now that you're here, you can deal with it...pretty please?")

So the bus, which is usually about 85% empty at this hour, was completely full and I had to stand in the aisle because I happen to live fairly near to a popular get-out-and-party-in-the-fresh-air kind of holiday place to go.

I didn't mind standing up, though, because it was entertaining. The passengers occupying the 85% of the seats that are usually free were all between 20 and 23 years old and, for the most part, seemed to know each other.

Hair gel prevalence was surpassed only by cell phone use and two of the phones were conveniently stowed in the owners' cleavage when not in use. At least ten alcoholic beverages were being consumed (this is 10:00 a.m., by the way) and a one-liter bottle of the local brew (a liquor called guaro, made from sugarcane) was flashed at one point and discussed audibly and at length.

I also spotted six non-standard piercings: two upper ear, two eyebrow, one tongue and one back of the neck (a new one on me). And that was just the boys.

Conclusion: It's good to take the bus once in a while. Keeps you in touch with the culture.


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