Conversations on the Bus, Part 1:
A woman gets on the bus and sits next to me, then pulls a small, open package of Fig Newtons out of her pleather purse. The man across from her looks up from his phone and stares at the woman's cookies.
Man: how many you got in there?
Woman: Just one. (looks down at the package) They've only been in there a week.
Man: Can I have some?
Me: (Side-eyeing this business.)
The woman starts to hand him part of a cookie when he raises his hand to ward her off. "Don't eat that, there's blood."
She wipes it off and hands it back. "That's just from my hand." He nods, satisfied with this answer, and pinches off a small piece of cookie and pops it in his mouth.
An elderly man seated nearby moans and scratches at his arms. We're almost to the stop for the methadone clinic. We all side-eye him as he reaches into his pants, then coughs violently. Small flecks of phlegm dot the window. The man goes back to looking at his phone, slowly chewing, and I remember my earplugs for mornings on the back of the 150.