Sometimes I can really analyze the hell out of my interactions with people. I'm very good at it as I run the specific event through my memory bank a number of times. However, I wish I could be good at it when I am actually in the moment. An example is when I was travelling last April in Portugal.
I left one Workaway site in the interior of Portugal and headed to another site in Salema - a yoga and artist retreat in the southern part of the country.
I took a bus from Lisbon to Lagos where I transferred to another bus that would drop me off in Figueira, a small community just a few kilometers from Salema. The bus stopped at numerous stops on the way and the drop off / pick up locations were all in the town squares within the villages.
I knew that we were getting close to Figueira and as the bus came to a stop on the highway, 3 school kids got off but I could not spot a bus stop sign. I thought the driver was just being a nice guy for the kids. The bus started off again and then I saw the Figueira village welcome sign. I was sitting near the front of the bus and I got up and asked the driver if that was the stop I was supposed to get off. He said yes and I then asked politely if I could get dropped off as someone was waiting for me and I will just walk back the couple of blocks. He said no and that he can't stop anywhere other than at official bus stops.
I looked out and there was absolutely no traffic on the road with no pedestrians and if he did stop, there would be no conflict with cars, trucks or people. The driver than said that he could drop me off at the next bus stop or else I could get off at the end of the line and then take a bus back. I asked where the next stop was and he said it was about 3 kilometers away. I said OK, drop me off there.
I was really picked at this driver for not dropping me off a few blocks from my destination but also for the fact that I verified with him when first boarding the bus that my stop is very close to Salema - he knew me and knew where I wanted to go!
He eventually did stop the bus and sure enough, there was a bus stop sign beside the highway and looking around, there was absolutely nothing around except farmers' fields. I got up and waited until he opened the front door but he didn't and not saying a word, he just pointed to the back doors. I was right in front of the doors and no one was getting on the bus!
I turned around and walked to the back of the bus while all the passengers gave me the big, hairy eyeball.
I waited at the side of the bus for the driver to come out and open the luggage doors to retrieve my luggage but he didn't appear. I could see him looking at me via his side mirror and that's when I clued in that the jerk wasn't going to come out.
I opened a couple of the doors and while moving other passengers' luggage and boxes about, I finally found mine and pulled it out. While I was doing this, I could feel and sure enough when I looked up, everybody on that side of the bus was looking down on me as if I was a loser or something. And what did I do next? Why I shut the luggage doors because I'm a nice, well-mannered Canadian.
When I crossed the highway to get to the other side, I noticed everybody on the other side of the bus giving me the big stare. The driver had the audacity to sit there for a few minutes and let all his passengers have a bit of a show. I should have sold tickets to this farce.
That's when I started my analysis of this little hiccup in my travels. What a fool I was! Why the hell did I close the luggage doors? I should have left them all open, left some of the other riders' luggage outside and then he would have to come out and reload and close the doors. And when he did, I would have told him that his actions did not bode well for the tourism business and frankly he was an asshole!
Well, that's what I would have said and done.