Writing 101: A Character-Building Experience (BU Day 006)

Prompt: Who’s the most interesting person (or people) you’ve met this year? Today’s twist: Turn your post into a character study.


The doors of the bus finally opened after a good ten-minute wait under a sunny sky, and the large group of friends started boarding, the sound of their voices reaching their seats before the backside of their jeans. Smiles on every face, money rattling in their pockets, moods on a positively high note. It was the last Saturday of spring break, and they wanted to end their vacation with a bang. I was their chaperone for the day, and the Cherry Blossom Festival was only a fifteen-minute ride away.

I couldn’t help feeling weird. My sister, chatting with her friends further down the line of plastic chairs, was only younger than me by about, what, seven or eight years? We weren’t separated by a full decade, yet I was made to take the race baton formed in the shape of that adult responsibility usually bestowed to my parents when leading a pack of children. I had a feeling I was more childish than most of the students on that bus, so blending in wasn’t hard at all.

The lot of them were high school juniors and seniors, so they either had another year or just a few months to go before graduating. The clothes they wore were pretty much the same compared to the fashion during my year, and the conversations I heard were about similar concerns my friends and I had when we were roaming the halls of mandatory education. I easily found myself talking and laughing with a group of guys, and it was like being in college with my friends from the anime club.

I knew they were all going to have the experiences post-high school that my generation had to go through, and college will most likely be the best years they’ll have before needing to enter the job market. The biggest problems they were having involved homework, allowances, getting their driver’s licenses, dating, all the Earth-shattering stresses that brought suspense to their lives. Voting, bills, creaking bones, marriage, stuff that had no place in my vocabulary when I was their age certainly were far from their minds.

That fifteen-minute ride to Geary Boulevard made me forget that my sister and I were labeled under different letters of the “Generation” alphabet, and without the presence of our parents, I was actually able to enjoy myself for the first time in a while.

Stepping onto the pavement, we could hear music blasting from around the corner, and my job as the accompanying adult may have begun once we exited the bus, but in that moment, we all just became one bustling crowd looking forward to an afternoon at the festival.


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