One of the ideas for posts on the wordpress.com Daily Posts website is to write about the strangest thing that’s ever happened to you on a bus.
I chose this topic as I have a bizarre story from about 12 years ago which is strange and a bit scary.
Anyway, it was a Saturday afternoon and I was on the 183 bus going home from my university in Hendon to the house I was sharing with friends in North Harrow.
I’d made this journey countless times before and never previously had any problems.
I remember boarding the busy bus and going to the top deck to find a seat. Thankfully one of the seats right at the front was free. These are the best seats on a bus in my opinion, as it enables you to pretend that you’re the bus driver.
We had been going for about 10minutes when a foreign guy next to me lent over and said ” do you speak English?”. After getting over the shock of someone speaking to me (in London it’s customary not make eye contact or to speak to your fellow travellers) I said “yes”.
The guy then handed me a scrap of paper and told me to read it.
I expected the scrap of paper to be an address he wanted directions to or maybe some religious nonsense. What it actually said was.
“Next Tuesday at 5:30 a nuclear bomb will explode in central London”
I was a little freaked out by this, not because I thought it was going to happen but because I was sat only a couple of feet away from an obvious nutcase.
The guy asked me whether I understood the note I said yes. He then got up told me to be careful and got off the bus.
As this was years before 9/11 or 7/7 I didn’t really think much more about it. The only people I told about the incident were my friends over a beer that evening, and that conversation went along the lines of ” guess what some nutter did on the bus this afternoon”.
But in today’s world of international terrorism I’m not sure whether I could take the same view again that it’s obvious rubbish spoken by a madman. I think I’d have to take a better safe than sorry approach and report it, if nothing else to get the guy the psychiatric help he definitely needed.
Anyway so that was my strangest ever bus ride. Thinking about it there’s quite a few other incidents I could write about in regards to journeys on buses, maybe another day.