As stated in an earlier post, traveling in Thailand is never easy. The buses leave whenever the driver feels like it and I’ve had to get used to waiting when there is no known end in sight. As regular as the bus from Lang Suan to Surat Thani has been, usually leaving between 12:30 and 1, this particular day it was not.
Alan, James, and I were heading down to Krabi (more specifically Ko Jum) for a long weekend and I had told them that the bus usually left on time and was never a hassle. After at least an hour of waiting, we were still waiting.
Waiting at the bus stop proved to be entertaining though. The most notable bystander was a lady that seemed to be a regular. She was muttering to herself and weaving between the chairs and benches. When James got up to throw his beer can away, she grabbed it from his hand and stuffed it in her bag. A few minutes later, she came up to him with a paper (of course completely in Thai) and started pointing and reading it to him. We had absolutely no idea what she was saying and she was just smiling (with a glint of crazy in her eye), pointing and trying to get James to read the paper. Disregarding our looks of confusion, she persisted for a few minutes and then just walked away.
Needless to say, she was a little off her rocker and unfortunately, because we don’t know Thai, we couldn’t figure out exactly how off her rocker she was.
As Thais frequently do, there were a few people sleeping here and there. A lady was sleeping on her fruit cart. The driver, who was soon to be ours, was asleep in a chair. The man in charge of the bus station was sleeping on a table and next to him was a man, presumably to be homeless, sleeping as well.
This man, the homeless one, was wearing no shirt and pants that were about four sizes too big for him, and he must’ve felt that zipping them up would have been way too much effort. He got up a few times to go pee, luckily he went away from the bus stop to do this, but he always came right back to his spot on the table.
The lady came around again for James’ beer can, but because he was not finished he didn’t hand it over. This seemed to tip her craziness up to a different level, because a few minutes later she snapped.
She marched over to the sleeping homeless man and started whacking him with a rolled up newspaper, while screaming and shouting. Alan said he thought she was saying something along the lines of, “Filthy, filthy, filthy.” She whacked him continuously until he got up and chased him around the corner of the building. Still yelling and screaming, she was smacking the rolled up newspaper on the chairs and the walls, and we were even a little nervous she was going to start on us.
She grabbed a broom and started furiously sweeping the area that he had previously been sleeping on, all the while still yelling what we now thought was, “Filthy, filthy, filthy.”
The shirtless man came walking back into where we were sitting and boarded a bus that was set to head to Chumphon in ten or twenty minutes. The lady took note of this, still muttering to herself. Meanwhile, all of us at the bus stop are sitting in awe (us more than the others since we weren’t exactly sure what was going on, but then again, they probably didn’t either).
Her next move was an alarming one.
She went fishing in the trash and retrieved a half-full beer bottle. Wondering what she was going to do with this bottle, we watched her wrap it in newspaper.
“Omg, she’s going to hit that guy with that bottle,” I whispered to James, “What do we do?! Omg, she’s going to beat that guy!” We all started getting a little nervous as we tried not to stare.
With the man still sitting on the bus, she started shouting again. Before I turned my head to see what she was up to, I heard a loud crash. Next to her seat, liquid was seeping onto the concrete. For some reason, she had shattered the bottle on the side of her seat and sent the remnants flying. Needless, to say everyone was a little confused by this and still watched her as she furiously tried to wipe it up.
I turned to James and laughed, “You should’ve just given her your beer can man!”