small old school yellow plastic Nokia. Incessantly bleeding blips of a river of texting.
both in blue sitting on different sides of the aisle. Trainers, tracksuit pants blue hoodie. She has a wool coat, blue and white scarf camel neatly pointed wedges. Leaning across she fondly and with a gesture that, perhaps because I did not realise their familiarity, folded care and concern together, caressed his knee. All the while piercing him with a reassuring smile. He was surprised, and stayed shrouded in the ennui of a track suit surrounded by we the commuting class. I can only marvel at what stories are held by that public intimacy.
When the elderly man fell on the train, his peaked checked cap tumbling, everyone unhesitatingly helped. After, he was sheepish, though thankful.
A very round straw blond bun lashed tight to the very top of her head. Dressed in black. White made face with deep plum lipstick and perhaps eye shadow too. She looks like one of those people you see behind a cosmetics counter at department stores. Such a round face, echoed by that bun, looks more doll mask irony but I think is supposed to be glamour (but then again I need my eight year old daughter to explain the hirsute taxonomy of pigtail, plait, braid and pony tail, so, you know).
Sometimes on the train there are people with, I’m not sure what phrases we use, mental disabilities, psychological disorders, mental health issues? There is someone now. They can frighten me. I think it is the unpredictability, though it is only unpredictable, for me, because I don’t understand what is happening for them. Unlike a broken arm, a missing limb, a stutter my ignorance means I only see the outside, and it is strange. He is physically large, and I can’t tell if there is distress, but there is a lot self talking. Anger, mock, calm, indignation all tumbling. “Childish? Who’s being childish now?” “A-S-A-D, A-S-A-D, A-S-A-D, where did you get that from?” “You’ve got the curse, you’ve got the fucking curse!” It might be television, an argument with his parents, friends, doctor, girlfriend. People, careful, look elsewhere, not I think from embarrassment or discomfort, its the feeling of volatility.