New York City was my favorite city in the world, so when my sister recommended that we get together somewhere to “Celebrate” the end of my most recent seasonal job, my first suggest was New York City, expecting her to knock the idea down immediately. But, she didn’t. She offered to pay for the weekend in a hotel in Manhattan. I would have liked to stay longer, but Lindsey had to get back to her actual job, and her (as she not to subtly reminded me at least twice a day), very attractive husband waiting for her in Connecticut. I was out of a job, and out of a home, so I called the only person I could think to turn to: my twin brother, Adrian. He lived in our childhood home, with his wife of two years, and their three-month-old triplets. I was fresh out of job interviews, or even ideas of what I wanted to do, and they were going a little bit insane. “Free room and board. We’ll even feed you for nothing as long as you allow us to get some sleep.” Adrian was practically begging.
“Yeah, yeah. All right. Lindsey’s train leaves this evening. I’ll hop on the overnight bus.”
“Thank you so much. You have no idea what this means to me!”
“I have plenty ideas what this means. Have the thank you pie at the ready.”
“It’ll be ready for your arrival. Love you, Sis.”
“Love you too.”
I was one of the first people on the bus that night. I knew this bus well enough to know that you got there early, or you had six miserable hours. The bus started to fill up quickly shortly after I arrived. Apparently, it was a very popular day to be leaving New York City and heading for Virginia Beach, VA because the bus seemed even more crowded than usual. I was just about to stick in my ear buds, and settle in for the six-hour ride, when there was someone leaning over the empty aisle seat next to me.
“Excuse me, may I have this seat or are you waiting for someone?” I looked away from the window, and just had to laugh, “Oh. Hello, coffee girl.”
“Directions Man. No, please, have a seat.” Directions Man sat down, and for a moment, we just sat there in a weird silence. “So…uh… Are you heading to the beach for a vacation?”
“Uh, no actually. Heading to the beach because it’s home.”
“Really?” I twisted in my seat to get a better look at him, “You seemed like such a native New Yorker the other day. Or maybe that’s just because I’m a terrible tourist.”
“No, no, I am. Or. I was. New York City was home when I was younger, but I’ve been in Virginia Beach for a while now. New York City ever couple of weeks to visit old friends, and other such business.” He nodded, pulling his phone out of his pocket.
“Huh. Okay then.” I answered.
I was out of things to say at that point, but I was saved from trying to make other petty conversation by the bus overhead lights turning off and the driver coming on to announce the scheduled stops for the day. I settled back into my seat, popped my ear buds in, rested my head against the window, and fell asleep quicker than I imagined I could.