I was walking over the hill breathlessly to see that the 41 bus has already at the bus stop. Several thoughts ran through my mind, but within 0.6 second, I knew that I was too late. I raised my arms up in exasperation, and the bus began to leave. I slowed down as there was no point in walking fast anymore. I calmed my breathing and got to the bus stop, to hear a middle aged man say out loud, "You shouldn't have stopped running!"
He had a particular accent I wasn't used to, but his smile made me relax.
"Maybe," I replied.
"It's like life man, you have to keep running even if you are late," he said as he was huffing and sweating.
Luck was on our side as another 41 was coming from a distance.
"I knew the exact time the bus was coming, but you should have kept running. Even more since you were late." Already, I was interested in him. The funny thing is that he took about 2 minutes of fumbling for exact change ($2.25) once he got on the bus; the bus driver was nice, because usually they don't have the patience and just start driving.
He came to sit one seat away from me; he was sweating a lot and I mentioned it to him. The man started to explain why he was late - that he was called to work although he was sick(? might've misheard him since the bus was loud in the back and he had an accent). He was easy to listen to; we talked about San Diego being the 4th most expensive city to live in the U.S. & his experience with having a 2 egg breakfast that cost him ~$19 total. He knew that the ingredient cost was less than a dollar, and it was a restaurant recommended by a co-worker.
"first time paying out of my pocket. usually, company pays for breakfast... ridiculous," the man complained. I felt the pain, since i was broke also.
Before I knew it, we got to talking about his son who goes to SDSU who recently changed his major to physics/mathematics from business. The father seemed disapproving of his son as he explained, "that's late. He wasted 2 years of his life by being unsure of what he wanted. When I was young, in middle school, I KNEW I wanted to learn international relations/studies and majored in business."
When I heard that, I felt a pang/guilt inside me. I was turning 24 within a year, about to graduate with a BS in biology which I had no interest in. I should've graduated in 2012, but life kicked me in the face/ribs and I ended up wasting 3 years of my life in pain and misery. All I could do was listen to the wise man from Morocco who was hustling.
To have no doubt at all, is something I used to envy. Now that I have a concrete goal (which I'm not comfortable enough to say it to anyone else), I feel less scared/doubtful than I have in past 3 years.
Watching the man leave, I couldn't help but to smile a bit.
It was nice.