Misplaced Loyalties

I’m happy to report that updates to Mrs R J’s condition can now be accessed via the menu at the top of each page, both on home/laptop computers and also smartphones.

Meanwhile, yet another chapter in the daily life of an English school bus driver in America –

The journey home from school today was not a bus driver’s success story. All four of the younger Roberts kids were back after a three day detention for misbehaving in school.

Jethro Roberts, the eldest, and Izaiah – who suffers from anger management problems – sit opposite the driver; Treanna, their sister, sits behind the driver, and little Azariah – with chipmunk agility and a shorter attention span than any amoeba – is squeezed in between two fifth graders with orders to sit on him, if necessary, rather than let him out of his seat.

The root of the troubles had nothing whatever to do with the Roberts family. Sharreta Robinson, a pleasant, friendly, girl who sits near the back of the bus, and a fifth grade boy, Keyshawn Attwell, a friend of Jethro’s, had been engaged in shy conversation at every given opportunity for the last three days. Keyshawn was new to the bus, and the driver was quick to notice a relationship developing between the two.

It made a pleasant change to see two kids enjoying each other’s company. Usually, the bus reverberated with continual bickering and name-calling, occasionally erupting into more serious fistycuffs, so he was happy to turn a blind eye when Sharetta Robinson slipped across the bus aisle to a vacant seat behind Keyshawn, better to hear what he was saying above the cacophony of thirty-eight, over-excited, voices.

No doubt all would have been well had not Kaitlin Sanders, a plump and loud-mouthed sixth grade girl sitting across from Jethro Roberts, not also had her eye on Keyshawn. Sharreta’s illegal move to another seat was not lost on Kaitlin, who immediately began making loud, disparaging, remarks about Jethro’s parentage, for no better purpose than to gain Keyshawn’s attention.

Jethro Roberts, of course, responded by calling Kaitlin a “fat, lying, bitch,” whereupon the two ended up in the aisle, arms flailing, and emitting language never heard in a church vestry.

The driver’s reaction was to stop the bus, separate the two, then charge up and down the aisle, much like the proverbial bull in a china shop, yelling at the remaining thirty-six kids to settle back down in their seats before they all got referrals.

The Roberts family alighted at the next stop, as did Keyshawn. Jethro Roberts still muttered to himself on the injustice of getting a referral for no more than defending his honor, and the meanness of school bus drivers in general.

Kaitlin Sanders sulked for the rest of the journey, knowing her referral meant she would miss the next school field trip. Both she and Sharreta left the bus at the final stop.

The driver watched as the two girls walked away up the street, arm in arm, laughing and joking about nothing in particular.

“Huh! So much for young love,” he thought.

4 Replies to “Misplaced Loyalties”

  1. WOW! a new version of Sparrowchat! Good thinking Sparrowman! I ought to be thinking along similar lines myself – re smartphone access – but can’t be (as they say in the UK) “arsed” to go into the guts of Blogger and mess around, and probably send the whole caboodle down the drain.

    Your blog is looking great, RJ!

    Thank you for updates on Mrs RJ – I hope, as weeks pass that these will become dark days of the past, as she rallies and grows stronger. I think of you, and her, often.

    Your tales of your days on the school buses are always a good read! We didn’t have school buses in England did we? It’s a rather odd American custom – like so much else in this Land of the…er… Cree.

  2. Twilight ~ sorry, I missed this comment. For some reason WordPress has stopped emailing me blog comments, which is rather frustrating. Many thanks for your effusive praise of the ‘new look’. It keeps me out of mischief! 😉
    Mrs R J is struggling a bit. The 2nd chemo has affected her much more than the first, and is slow to give up its grip. She has the 3rd dose in six days time.
    I’m afraid the school bus tales have now come to an end. I wish I’d kept more copious notes as I rather like them myself. It was a strange six years, originally only intended to be for six months. I guess I just got rather attached to the little blighters! If someone had told me before I went to America that I’d be doing that job I’d have loudly uttered an emphatic, “NO WAY!” But such is life.

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