In the jam-packed bus with more than double passengers of its capacity people are leaning against each others. It looks like many cockroaches are inside a dirty little chocolate packet in a dustbin. It becomes puzzling to figure out which legs belong to which head. Some people are simply hanging with the handle of the bus door.
The bus conductor’s shouting is adding one new phase to the ignorance to sound pollution with people’s chattering, nonstop horns of different vehicles, music from the near by CD shop, sporadic noise of construction works . A mixture of body ordure, perfume, smokes from cigarettes and vehicles surely makes nausea inside the bus. I can feel my wet Kameez on my sweaty back shoulder. I am persuing me to be seated right above the engine which is covered with thin foam to save the female passengers from getting burned.
Outside, the sun is gladly informing his anger during this midsummer. Alike this bus all the other vehicles are waiting in the jam with their running engines. One lady wearing black veil tries to get in the bus but conductor has refused and started to argue.
One man curtly shouts out, “Ladies are foolish and always make troubles. Here we do not have any places to stand even.”
As a response from my part of the crowd a woman yell at the conductor, “let her in” and some of us join her with supportive phrases.
After bargaining the lady enters like a cat sneaking through the little hole of window grills over many disturbing looks.
Her hands are looking for a support to balance as the bus starts to move after the jam is over. As I am sitting near to the door my hands successfully reach hers from many others helping hands. I manage my legs with the toes by leaning my feet against the seat to make some room for her to stand, she holds my wet shoulder. I feel it is me standing as a woman as well as a human.
After two stops she looks at me and gets down from the bus. I see a girl is walking through the footpath, joining a crowd of women that is walking ahead to their destination, and becoming many girls. Here, me is not only myself, I is not being self –conscious, it is about many Bangladeshi women in their everyday life.
Take action! This post was submitted in response to My Story: Standing Up .