Between cab and bus, I chose to take bus to work this morning. After today’s adventure, I realized I could get a really close touch with people, with life and with my inspiration of writing…
As I almost reached my destination, I witnessed a scene, a scene that I don’t think it will be common to see in today’s full-of-crime-and-fraud society. A hick woman got on the bus with a huge sack and a pail and a basin. She found her place to settle down her stuff, then she sat on her big sack, keeping the pail and basin next to her feet. The bus suddenly stopped.
"Hey, the one with big sack hasn’t paid the bus fare," yelled the bus driver.
She stood up slowely, fumbling in her pocket for the small changes.
"A hundred Yuan note she has!" a female passenger replied to the driver loudly after seeing that hick woman took out a one-hundred note. The yokel was so innocent. From her facial expression, she seemed to tell the public that she didn’t know the air-con bus fare was 2 Yuan/per person.
"Hey, she paid the fare at the terminals when you gave her changes," that kind-hearted female passenger suggested.
"I don’t have small changes. How can I give her changes," the driver replied disgruntledly.
The bus continued to move on.
The female passenger said to the yokel in Mandarin, "Let me ‘break’ your one-hundred note. I have some small changes here." Once again, the facial expression of the hick woman told me that she was frustrated and doubtful. She was silent for a while. And the female passenger said to her again, "Come on! I won’t deceive you just wanna help you out. We’re on the bus. I am honest with you." The hick woman felt reassured and gave the 100RMB note to the female passenger. "Now, here you are–50, 20…" I heard the jingles and clinks of some coins between these two people’s hands. By the time the yokel got her 100 Yuan in small changes, it was my stop to get off the bus. That kind-hearted lady also got off the bus at the same stop–Oh,my! She’s so familiar to me. Where had I seen her before? I got the chance to see the face of this obliging passenger when getting off the bus. Oh, I remembered! She was the clerk who helped me to select medicine in the pharmacy near my office. She informed the bus driver that she had helped that passenger to exchange her 100 Yuan note and got off the bus in a hurry. I saw her back disappearing in the crowd as she ran to work…
What a thoughtful ending! For the extremely cautious ones, they probably would suspect that 100 Yuan bill was counterfeit or during exchanging the money, a thief would come and grab the wallet, such and such… For the highly selfish ones, they probably said to themselves "It’s none of my business!" Perhaps we would take what we have for granted as long as we are healthy and safe and have a better-off life. But our society needs more than construction of infrastructure but the reinforcement of concern and conscience. My Hong Kong friend once complained to me how rude and indifferent of the Hong Kong people were, especially men. I said to myself, the situation in HK is better than that in the major cities in China. She complained that she disliked living in the "forrest of cement and concrete," at that time we were having coffee at Starbucks in HK, I looked out through the French window, seeing people, autos and skyscrapers. Yeah, that’s a very depressive life. Now what I saw in HK doesn’t change much in Guangzhou. Indeed, we are living in a glowing "forrest of reflex glass" and icy cold communities.