I boarded the MTC bus to Central Station on sunday morning. The woman boarded the bus at the next step with the boy and the puppy. She was holding the puppy almost covering the body except the face. She asked the neighbour ‘Will this bus go to Veterinary Hospital?’ Getting an affirmative answer, she relaxed a bit.
The conductor came to the front to sell tickets. He looked at the puppy in her hand and said ‘Animals are not allowed in the bus’. She laughed with an apprehension and said ‘We need to take the puppy to the veterinary hospital’. The conductor explained his reason calmly to her ‘Its against the rules and if administration knows, they will take away my job’.
He suggested that they take an auto but it was obvious to everyone that they could not afford that. Except for the low end smart phone on the boy’s hand, there was hardly any display of assets visible on them. The well cleaned torn sari she was wearing made its own silent statements. The conductor was in obvious dilemma. After a minute, he made his decision and said, please keep the puppy on your hand at all the time and gave them the tickets.
The boy explained that the puppy has not been eating its food and so they were taking the puppy to the vet. It was clear that they have never taken that route before. They were very apprehensive and kept asking everyone and the conductor to let them know where to get down. Several people frowned as they saw the puppy but some people stopped by and asked and smiled. At the stop, they got down and were told how to go to the veterinary college and the bus moved on. It was the beginning of a perfect day.