A beloved friend grows wistful when she speaks about her little boy and his endless love.
Her favourite story is about when they were living in Boston, Massachusetts. This would have been the early 1970s, the height of the hippy movement, desegregation and the anti-war movement.
Money was tight, so she would bundle up her child and they would wait for the “hippy bus”. The route and schedule of which could best be described as “fuzzy”.
But it was free, and on most days it would ramble past their tenement building, the driver happy to pull over for a toke.
There was a rather unusual collection of people on this bus. Some were there for the weed, others for the free transportation. It was a welcome respite for the homeless and the directionless.
But this story is not about the bus, but rather about the little boy.
The boy’s mother learned that she had to begin their exit well ahead of the downtown market, because the little boy refused to leave the bus until he had kissed each and every occupant goodbye – on the lips.
Much to her chagrin, it didn’t matter what they smelled like or whether or not they had all their wits about them. They could skip no-one. He would plant his feet and refuse to move until he had shown his love to each and every one.
This woman makes the boy blush with these stories. I am this boy and she is my mother.
I hope to find this boy again. Maybe not his penchant for kissing homeless people on the lips, but there is so much I can learn from him about loving, if only I can remember how.
My attempts to research this bus have come up nil. I have only the stories from my Mother.