Chair. Seat. Bench. Whatever. It's the thing that allows us to sit. I will never ever get tired to talk about it. Seats on public transportation always successfully give me inspiration to write. Plus it gives me a chance to see how cruel or good people can be as fellow passenger.
For the sake of getting a seat, we can be selfish, uncaring, vicious all at once. Yeah. I admit. Been there. Done that. I have been in the lowest level already.
Anyway, a few days ago I was lucky to enter a totally empty busway. Just me and another lady inside it. And of course with one official in charge and the driver, mind you. We both felt so relieved that during rush hour there were still empty seats.
She then said to me, she just got back from a treatment for her leg. Previously she was inside a very crowded busway and feel the pain in her leg. So, she asked a young man, sitting in front of her to be kind enough stand up for a while so she can sit there. The young man refused totally point blank and said he was also tired from a long way journey. He need his rest and therefore he don't want to spend another journey standing all the way home. The lady then sighed and said,"...I don't understand why he won't give me his seat. He seems so young and strong. It's only for a while..."
I just nodded and give her no response. I don't want to tell her about things I heard from a friend that in another country is a bit different. In Europe for example.
A friend of mine once told me that if we gave an elderly a seat, they won't smile back at you and said thanks. Instead, they would feel insulted. Thinking that we are underestimate them for being old. And when I took a bus in Paris a few years ago, I noticed that nobody offer their seat to elderlies. I don't know whether the sitting passenger just tired and feel it's their seat anyway. Or avoid the awkward situation when the elderly would feel offended by the offer.
Another interesting story was about seats located near the entrance metro's door. So, if you are inside the metro during rush hour and happen to sit on the seat near the entrance doors, be prepare to stand up and flip back the seat. Why? So it will make more space for people who entering the metro. If you by any chance refuse to stand, people will ask you either nicely or rudely to please just stand up and let other people inside.
I suppose things will always be different in each country. Obviously, no matter how sick or tired we can't just make puppy face and ask other people to give us their seat.
At this point, to be honest, I probably won't give my seat either. And that is why I prefer to sit near the driver so nobody will bother me or told me to give up my seat. We all have our own problems, conditions, sickness or whatever. We just have to learn to deal with it while being in a public transportation.Or perhaps, one day out of the blue we just give our seat because that's something that we do. Simply being kind towards others.