Here is what I learned about myself already this morning and it is only 7:58: I am not a classy kind of girl. I am actually a bumbling moron who can, at times that are few and far between, masquerade as someone who has her stuff together. I can dress nicely and look pretty decent. But deep down, I am a five year-old spaz with scraped knees and messy hair.
Case in point: This morning, while heading for the bus, I see it stopped across the intersection. I know this bus comes every twelve minutes, sometimes longer, and so I run to catch this one so I won’t have to be late for work.
Until I approach the bus, signal that I want to board. As I am running, the bus begins to move ever-so-slightly away. I think I’m all that, so I leap up onto the platform as the bus pulls away. I can picture it happening as I leap and I look SO smooth: A beautiful girl, late for her ride, leaps onto the bus, smiles at the driver; the passengers on the bus smile while the girl smiles back and wipes her sweaty brow. “Phew! That was a close one!” She combs her hair and continues looking beautiful, if not just a little flushed.
Yeah, not so much. This is what actually happened: I leaped FOR the platform, but my foot didn’t land ON the platform. Instead, my foot caught on the platform, my shoe fell off, and my leg slid down the front of the step. All while the bus is moving, mind you. I land with my hands on the step and cry some pretty choice words. (The one nice thing about being embarrassed like this is that I can say swears and very few people will understand.) It takes a second for the bus to stop moving, for me to pick up my ridiculous messy body, put my shoe back on, and board the bus.
But that’s not the end of the story. I smile when I board and then, for the next ten minutes, stand awkwardly next to the twelve people who saw me fall without saying anything. I can’t say anything. I don’t know how. So the most terrible part of the morning wasn’t the fact that, at the most crowded bus stop in Cambuí, I tripped leaping into the bus, it was that I couldn’t talk about it afterward with anyone. Everything would have been better if I could have made some joke about it. But when you don’t have the words, you’re kind of stuck inside your own head. So my mouth went dry from nerves and I started sweating. And then I realized my toe was bleeding because, I think, part of my nail has been ripped off. I took some pictures of it to put up here, but I don’t have the cord, so I will post them later.
I am convinced that these stupid moments happen for a reason, like somehow I am storing up some good karma somewhere. Kind of like, if I can roll with these moments, then someday they’ll pay off. But I don’t know. I have had an awful lot of embarassing moments in Brazil so far. Sometimes people say they need to go away to discover who they are…like a deep soul-searching, and to a certain degree, I think that’s what my trip to Brazil is all about. But I think I am not going to be happy if I came all this way to find out that my soul is as uncoordinated and mindless as it has proven itself to be this morning. No, that will certainly not be the most rewarding pay off.