Tuesday, 27 April 2010


It was 4 in the noon...or early evening if you like. The bus wasn’t crowded, exactly as I’d expected – most offices in Mumbai leave at 6pm (on paper). I hopped onto the step-board casually, and strode in, fully-expecting a seat waiting for me. As fate would have it, there was one. Only, it was a ladies’ seat.

The day had been stressful so far – that morning, it had taken me almost 15 minutes to find directions to the office for my interview, and 10 more minutes to walk there. The wait at the bus-stop after the interview was a 20-minute ‘balance-shift-from-one-leg-to-another-and-back”, since there wasn’t any place to sit. So, when I saw the lone seat in the bus, and no standing female in sight, I instantly got seduced and made an athlete’s dash to it.

Three stops later, five people got into the bus, 4 men, and 1 slightly-plump, middle-aged woman. I immediately rose to my feet to award the seat to its rightful beneficiary, but I hadn’t even remotely foreseen what was to happen next.

As soon as I stood up, one of the men, a middle-aged portly man, with unkempt hair, a thick black-grey-white stubble, and unbuttoned shirt, pounced like a bloodhound towards the seat, like as if his life depended on it. He sat himself down with a sudden plonk, and immediately closed his eyes as if he had been stung by a sedating-syringe.

The woman reached the spot more than a hundred seconds later, the frown on her forehead and the scowl on her face clearly showing. She called out to the man, but he pretended like he didn’t hear her, only responding with a brushing of his nose, and a loud-and-clear yawn that would put Kumbhakaran to shame. She tapped on his shoulders for effect, but he only opened his eyes for a while to look at her, and then looked away with shut eyes and another yawn.

Before any self-proclaimed Good Samaritan could react and put the jerk in place, the woman took matters in her own hands and gave us all a demonstration of Woman-Power.

She tapped him harder on his shoulders, yanked him up by his arm, pointed to the “Ladies” sign, and sat herself down, to the utter horror and dismay of the jerk.

It was nice to see a woman who knew how to take care of herself, and assert herself.

Today’s women are absolutely independent, know their rights, and are willing to fight for them. They don’ take nonsense anymore. I looked the jerk in his face and scoffed at him, and congratulated the lady in my mind for her act of assertion.

Three stops later, a few more people entered the bus, which was now beginning to get crowded. One of them was a young, pregnant lady. People made way for her and she walked slowly and carefully towards the seats meant for ladies.

The middle-aged superwoman had noticed the lady board the bus. She looked up at the roof-panel above her head.

The sign placed there, which a few minutes ago only meant “reserved for ladies” for her, now read “reserved for carrying/pregnant women”.

In a split-second, she closed her eyes and pretended to be in deep slumber.


P.S. - The pic has been taken from a blog written by a lady who absolutely hates teh fact that males plonk their asses on Ladies' seats :P. Stumbled upon this blog while searching for an apt photograph. Here's the URL - http://theladiesseat.blogspot.com/


  1. hehe...the same episode repeats whenever u travel in a public transport vehicle , be it train or bus..:D its easy to point some1 else's mistakes but hard to practice wht one preaches ;)....rules change wen sum1 else is in need of help :D

  2. @Adeline - Wel, it's known as self-preservation :P

  3. :-D good one... very true.. loads of such things keep happening all over.. :)

  4. Rofl, the whole truth of life.

    Its easy to preach, doing it ourselves is makes a man/women!!

    The lady should be given a kick in her back side too :P

    I wish the guy whom she made get up did the same to the lady again and made the pregnant woman sit !!!

    Would have been a sweet revenge :P

    How travelling in a bus can make you witness human mentality at its best :p

  5. haha! Can totally believe it!! I have witnessed the first part as well as the second part! Nicely expressed!!

  6. haha! Can totally believe it!! I have witnessed the first part as well as the second part! Nicely expressed!!

  7. I have witnessed both the parts and also the part that usually follows : a seat from the gents' side being offered to the lady.. I have rarely seen young women offering their seats to their older folk.. My hating this whole reservation thing is a different topic altogether..

  8. Jim Stovall says and I quote, Integrity is doing the right thing, even if nobody is watching. Unquote.


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