The lady was round like an apple and bobbed from side to side as she walked- as if she had been dropped in water not on a pavement.
She was laden with heavy shopping bags over filled with ingredients for that night's dinner. She was struggling with the weight of the bags, the bags were struggling with the weight of the food and altogether they were making slow progress down Fulham Palace Road.
The bus raced onwards, trying to take advantage of a relative break in the eternal car park that is the route to Hammersmith. The road ahead was clear and I expected the bus to roar on like a horse in full gallop. Then the unexpected happened, we slowed and the bus driver tooted. To whom we thought? For once there was no traffic, no bike in the middle of the lane, no car trying to cheekily turn right.
He was slowing and tooting at the lady as she meandered along, moving from left to right but seemingly barely moving forward. He was stopping to let her on the bus. We were no where near a stop and she hadn't run after him or shouted and pleaded to be allowed on as we all do. This was a very strange occurrence.
She smiled the biggest, truest smile I have seen all week- the whitest teeth on the darkest skin- a smile of warmth. She shook her head and said no she didn't need the bus she was nearly at her door. She waved, the bus driver waved and we sped onwards to Hammersmith- and I think everyone on the bus may have been twenty seconds later and a great deal happier than they expected to be when they got on the bus.