the bike and the bus

As a passenger, I have watched from the bus window: the biker, mouthing the word “shit” as he realized that the passing bus, nosing over to a stop, was about to encroach on the bike lane before the bicyclist could squeeze past.
As a bike rider, I know the fear and triumph of spotting a bus behind me and speeding away from it, knowing that as the distance increased between us, it became less and less of a concern.
I hadn’t really thought about the bus driver until I was riding on a road suddenly jammed with morning traffic. I hesitated when I saw a stopped bus picking up passengers, signaling that would rejoin the long line of unmoving vehicles. As I wondered whether I could sneak up the bike lane before the bus lurched across it, I saw the driver’s arm extend out the window, waving someone through. I couldn’t imagine he meant me, but as I slowly started to pedal forward, he gave a thumbs up. I tried to toss a “thank you” toward the window as I passed, but I’m not sure he heard me.

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