It was time to leave the criminal Quito, where I had been for a month, tied by a combination of friendships and hopes. The latter were creative and romantic. It had been a while since I last packed, and the flu didn’t help: when I bent, my head seemed to be on the verge of exploding.
I said goodbye to some guests at the hostel Bambu, and I had to speak with the imbecile and arrogant owner. At least was a short chat.
I also bid Luis [ec] farewell. He was in his last week at that job. He resigned after a conflict with the owners: he got discovered …having english lessons! (in an working hour that he swapped with Juan). The owners’ attitude was absurd: an employee having english lessons was something that obviously implied benefits to the hostel. But it seemed that those stupid control freaks were irritated as nobody asked for their permission.
I stopped and haggled a taxi to Cumandá. Quito, yet as dangerous and uncomfortable as it was, had been the setting for a month of interesting experiences, some of them quite unorthodox.
At the terminal of Cumandá, I ignored all the voices and went directly -guided by randomness- to Pullman Carchi: a company that would transport me to Tulcán for $4.50.
It was 10:30 a.m. and I was the only passenger in the bus. Although I had the seat #5, I sat down at the end of the bus, to be able to look after my backpack (through the window, though).
We left the terminal, and the bus began to fill with passengers after stopping at some places in the city. I was sleepy, but the hostility of Quito didn’t allow me to sleep. I was waiting to get out of the city.
I had two seats for myself, so I was comfortable. I put my little backpack against the wall, with my leg covering it.
At the seat in front of me, “the Good”. Around thirty, with indigenous characteristics, and a ponytail.
“The Ugly” was changing seats all the time, something quite suspicious. He was also going to prove being bad and stupid. He was relatively fat, and was wearing a blue cap. He had a friend in the bus, “the Bad”.
“The Bad” was seating in the middle of the bus.
We were leaving Quito, at some suburbs.
“The Ugly” comes to me and asks:
– Where are you going? -in a terrible english.
I was really sick of getting asked directly in english, so I answered in spanish (my mother tongue):
– Mande? (Sorry?)
He changed back to spanish:
– Where are you going?
– To Tulcán.
– You must change seats, you must sit down in the first seats of the bus. There’s other people coming.
It smelled like shit, metaphorically. The person and his speech. He was not more than a passenger, and it was easy to detect dishonest intentions.
– Good. Officially, I have the #5. I will change whenever it is necessary. But now it’s not. -of course I had no intention to change my place in the bus.
“The Good”, who had been listening, took part:
– Take it easy, you don’t have to change. -heading back in order to talk to me.
– Yes. I’m cool. I am not going to change seats because other passenger says so. -I replied.
And I stayed there, my distrust to “the Ugly” growing. After some minutes (that “the Ugly” spent playing with his iPhone and looking for other possible victims) “the Good” stepped out of the bus. While the bus attendant was getting his luggage out, “the Ugly” and “the Bad” had time to get also out of the bus.
The bus advanced some meters. I had my window opened, so I could see the three of them on the street.
– Son of a bitch! Live your own life! – “the Bad” shouted, while punching “the Good”‘s face.
“The Ugly” took advantage of the situation, and kicked “the Good” in his crotch.
Obviously they were punishing him for its intervention in the bus, when the real reason of their failure as criminals was their extreme imbecility.
“The Good” was scared. He had two violent pricks in front, interposing between him and his luggage. The bus kept on slowly advancing, waiting for the attendant, that was watching the fight without taking any part on it.
I was looking through the opened window, very irritated and annoyed by the injustice and the shit surrounding the situation. Apparently, I couldn’t do anything, but I went mad -always from my safe position in the bus. I spitted on “the Ugly”, and I started shouting: “I seeee pain in the future”, “You will be damned!!”.
Obviously, I don’t believe in that shit… but with a strange accent, an aphonic voice, certain connotations of superiority, and some strange faces, I thought it could work with those stupid and aggresive thieves.
And I don’t know if it worked. But while the bus was advancing and I kept prophesying pain, “the Good” had time to get his bag.
I don’t feel very thankful to “the Good”: I wouldn’t have changed the seat. But it was painful to see how a person that somehow fights for the rights of the others becomes the victim of some bastards.
I think it’s obvious that “the Ugly” wanted me to change my place in order to grant “the Bad” the opportunity to steal me something.
One hour later, I was far from the delinquency that had surrounded me a whole month…