and like a moth to the flame felt disturbingly and inexplicably drawn by the presence of this curious force within our midst. I listened to his conversation with the man next to him (who could easily have been Simon Peter,) alert for any vile unfavourable words that would surely blow his cover but there were none - he was eloquent, intelligent and polite to those around him. Skinny frame, long coat with scarf wrapped loosely around his neck like a student, (which in reality was nearer the truth,) and had me thinking about the man himself and how he might have mingled with everyday folk.
When we got stuck in traffic he leant his head against the window. From where I sat I could clearly see the contours of his model-like beauty gently framed by the morning sun. Late 20's, maybe 30, certainly no more. Centred. Still. Contained. At peace within his own skin, unruffled by the crowded bus and bodies pressed together around him.
"Hello, I'm on the bus, gonna be really late, can you let the boss know - thanks."
He opened his eyes and smiled generously at the girl next to me as she stuffed her phone back in her bag, saw me notice that she did not before drifting off again. I took the opportunity to stare which he sensed and I had to divert my gaze afraid of what he might see, conscious of my transparency.
He offered a helping hand to an elderly lady as we got off before striding confidently into the throngs. I craned my neck over bobbing heads for a last glimpse, unwilling to break away without some hint of recognition until he became submerged in the crowd leaving me behind to contemplate the impossible.