Long Travels on a Jeepney

a happy jeepney ride

Ever since I was a kid, I always have to endure long travels on a jeepney. Since then, I’ve developed quite a fascination with it. One thing I like about it is that I can watch people. With so little options, what else is there to do? I remember a line from Jack Johnson’s People Watching: well I’m just people watching the other people watching me. That’s what happens inside a jeepney. It’s the only time I can watch, study and observe other people freely, which is kind of fun. Sometimes I make up stories about them in my mind (what a productive way to pass the time) or listen to their stories and gossips about other people (I’m an earshot away so I might as well listen). That is, if the loud jeepney music worthy of a rock concert doesn’t drown out their voices.

There’re other reasons why I like to travel on a jeepney. While I’m not people watching or covering my bleeding ears from decibels of Pinoy rap, riding on a jeepney actually is a kind of brainstorming session for me. I come up with designs, random good thoughts, a good idea for a project and so my other things. But there’s another thing that I do that makes a long ride worth it–I unconsciously meditate. Thoughts enter my mind without me knowing. Thoughts lead to another thought and then another. Sometimes I never realize that I’ve gone as far as the moon itself. Along the way I get lost because of so many turns I’ve taken. The moment I realize this, those thoughts suddenly vanish and I remember nothing of what transpired in my mind. Cursing and wishing for the nth time that there’s a mental notepad that exists in the Universe.

Maybe I can relate these thoughts to embers of a fire–dormant, almost dying; until it’s kindled by a thought then stoked by another one. Then it becomes a full-fledged fire. You’re never fully aware that a little flame of thought can grow into something as grand and beautiful. Like a wildfire, it spreads out and branches into multiples. It consumes you like a fire consumes oxygen. Hungry, never getting enough. By the time it was through you’re left with nothing but ashes, remnants of a rage that came too swiftly and ends tragically, leaving you with nothing to remember by.

But what I really love about long travels on a jeepney is that oftentimes it seems that I’m shut out from the rest of the world, even just for a moment. Temporarily, the world is put on hold, resuming only when I reach my destination.

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One response to “Long Travels on a Jeepney

  1. Since we are not related in any shape or form nor seen you in person. The jologs department of Pantok would like to see if you can write an article about us, Keep us posted :)

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