The Whale – I

Call me Ishmael ( Humour me). This is the sad tale of one man’s obsession. But of course you need some background.

This summer I’m working in my hometown. My workplace is very far off from where I live. Which means I needed a means of transport. I had four choices. Three of them real.

a) Go by auto and blow huge amounts of cash

b) Risk riding my 20 year old scooter (which I swear seems to squeak my name every time I brake) to work.

c) Public transport

d) Shadowfax

I chose public transport. Buses. Now travelling by bus is a unique experience, unlike any means of transport. The point of most other transport, is just that, transport. Get from point A to point B. Not so when you travel by bus. Joy , sorrow,competition, anger, lust, bravado, survival. It’s all visible. It’s human drama. That’s what it is.

Typical Windsurfer and typical bus surfer. Note similarity in technique


Bus surfer

But I digress. Let me get back to the story. Now my workplace being quite far off, the chances of finding one bus that took a route all the way from my home and dropped me right in front of my workplace were very slim. It so happened that on the first day of work I found one such bus. Bus No. 330B. I knew then and there , that this one was special. It had an aura , it almost glowed white.

I even got a seat. It almost floated all the way to it’s destination and even the conductor seemed uncharacteristically polite. It seemed too good to be true. It was. For never since that day have I caught that bus again. I enquired, only one bus plies that route. It became my maddening desire to travel by that four-wheeled leviathan. It became my white whale.

Only once since have I sighted her. Just as I got into another bus that would take me only half way. She sped past like white lightning.

Thar she blows.