After a few weeks of riding in, I started noticing an old man with a cap and walking stick standing or sitting in a bus shelter in Mosman in the afternoons. He was there almost everyday and after a while he started watching me ride past. The thing was, he wasn't watching my bike, he was looking at me. Immediately I thought 'sour old bastard glaring at us young motorbike riders' and I started glaring back at him (almost impossible to see beneath my helmet and sunglasses.)
A few weeks more went past and one day in an uncharacteristically good mood (doesn't occur often when battling Sydney traffic), I nodded at him. He nodded back. Holy crap, he wasn't glaring at me, he was just watching me. The next day, I nodded. He nodded back.
So this went on quite regularly. One week he wasn't there and I remember saying to Bec "Oh man, I hope he's ok". But he returned after a few days and we continued where we'd left off.
Another few weeks went by like this until about 3 weeks ago when he would start taking his hand out of his pocket to wave at me. So, I have started waving at him now as I go past. I try to watch other riders who go past too to see if they too say 'gday' as they make their daily commute. None have.
So yesterday we progressed again. I stopped at traffic lights about 30 metres from where he was and he started hurrying towards me. I started freaking out! What does he want? He got pretty close before the lights went green.
So, on reflection last night, I started thinking .. What if I have offered this old man something that I can't deliver? What if he wants a relationship with me? What if he only goes to the bus stop to wait for me every day? This became a nice, friendly 'hello' but now I'm scared of what I may have done inadvertently.
Either way, why should I be scared? What is there to be scared of? This is how I want the world to be, more smiles and waves and less frowns and growls. But now I don't know how to handle it. I have thought before about stopping and taking him for a coffee, but now I don't know.
Ergh, what an odd thing to be concerned about.
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