Springtime on NJ Transit

Now that the ugliness is finished for the moment in Boston [Monday Marathon through bizarre shootout culminating last night in the second main suspect’s capture], I feel it is appropriate, perhaps even charitable to share an anecdote to remind one of humor and levity in the world.

I am dogsitting for my sister, which necessitates NJ Transit commutes to and from her place for work on weekdays.  Thursday afternoon, I scrambled through the close and left my office with just enough time to catch the 6.22pm express train.  So of course when I arrived at Penn Station, the NJ Transit section looked like a lottery drawing in India due to several delayed trains, with no place to stand.  At 6.16, the 6.22 was on  “Stand By” so I jumped on the first train that would stop at my destination with 3 minutes to spare, claiming the first seat I could without paying attention to the passenger who would be my neighbor for the next hour.
He started out asking about my bag in a fairly innocous way, as a fellow traveler who was in the market for a roomy backpack. Once begun, however, conversation was difficult to break off, no matter how much I wanted to read my library book.  Soon enough, he disclosed he was an autodidactic percussionist who had been living in Istanbul for the past few years and was visiting is aged, possibly ailing, parents because he just had a feeling he must see them. Interested in the mysteries of India, he asked about my background and language.  Though he was disappointed that I was raised listening to jazz and The Kinks rather than carnatic music, this hippie world musician suggested I message him via facebook [where he goes by Jam though his name is Sam] so we could meet in the city when he returned from Montreal.
Frankly, I wasn’t surprised.  I was obviously Jam’s jam.  As my boss was quick to point out, it’s not like I’ve never dated hippie musicians before.  They are drawn to my exotic, ethnic nectar like little bohemian bees.

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