Here´s a short story I wrote:
Fourteen hour bus ride from the Pacific coast to Mexico City. I cannot sleep, as usually is the case. The bus snakes along the mountain roads en route to Oaxaca City, always staying between the narrow shoulders, but coloring outside the lines. The undulations of the vessel´s preferable B-line will easily take its toll on a weak stomach among us.
The man to my left is a head slinger - the kind of guy that sleeps on your shoulder - and I despise him. Our legs - his right and my left - touch in our cramped pair of seats. I have half a woody not because of our intimate contact, but because ever since we embarked, I have been thinking about the sex that awaits me. I keep reminding myself to pick up some condoms. I´ll probably forget.
I feel the warmth of this man´s drool saturating my T-shirt and I shrug his head off my shoulder. He wakes up and looks over at me. I greet him with an affable look as if to say "Oh, you´re awake. Glad to have you back."
Over the blare of "The Restless" by The Matches in my iPod headphones, I hear the vomiting of a Mexican kid somewhere behind me into what sounds like a plastic shopping bag. Called it. As long as he doesn´t vomit on me, I won´t wring his neck. The sickening stench of his oral excretion slowly wafts through the bus.
I get bored so, with my finger, i draw a picture of a bus in the condensation on my window. Then I go to draw a picture of a bus in the window of the bus that I just drew. God, I´m clever. Doesn´t work though: too small. Shit. Still bored. I look around for amusement. As my eyes systematically glide throughout the cabin, something catches my eye. Was it anything good? I backtrack. My focus lands on Headslinger. He´s got a huge wart or pimple or something on my side of his nose. I mean, this thing´s good. I decide that I´ll pop it. Someone´s got to do it. I decide to do a practice round before I go in for real: get a little reconnoissance of the terrain I´m dealing with here. I reach for my target with both hands, trying to get close but not too close. The bus swerves around another hairpin.
Losing my balance (without my arms on the rests), my torso plunges into his arm. He wakes to the sight of my fingers and thumbs flailing and retracting in front of his face.
I give him the same welcoming gase as before. Smooth criminal.
Everything about this guy bothers me. It´s not just the boulder on his nose and his now frigid spit on my sleeve. His greasy hair was once drenched, now dried and hardened in gel and I can smell it from here; granted, his hair is a mere six inches from my nostrils. He´s resting his head on his hand now. Sleep overcomes him for the twenty-second time this seating and his arm falls into my lap and lands on the jeans pulled taught over my crotch. I´d like to lop off that arm with a cleaver. His head starts to fall and he jerks awake.
"Okay, Headslinger, what´s the big idea?"
The look in his eyes gives away his inability to speak or understand English. That kid is going to barf up a lung pretty soon. The man to my left cannot get to sleep now and he looks grumpy. It is well past 2AM by now and my thoughts continue to race. He looks at me and says something about "la luz" and points to my light. My pupils scan the cabin to make sure - yep, mine is the only light illuminated on the bus. Shit - he´s talking to me.
I decide that I will kill Headslinger come daylight. I switch off the overhead light and begin to fidget with the knife in my pocket: waiting, just waiting.