Because the weather was so bad this morning the bus from Cannon Street station to the office was packed.
It’s the type of bus that only has seats at the back of it – a maximum of 16 seats – to allow for maximum sardining of passengers. And sardined we were.
All of a sudden the voice of a woman on the phone carried down the bus “No I’m not alright, I’ve just been punched in the belly…. No, no one has given me their seat… they can see I’m pregnant and I just go hit in the belly and no one has offered me a seat….
None of ‘em will look at me now, they’re all pretending they can’t hear me”
At this point there was a flurry of “have my seat” but, to add passive to the aggressive, the pregnant woman said “no, no… it’s FINE. I’m ok now”
At the time this was happening I was stuck amongst the standing masses at the front of the bus and could only just make out the woman’s face. Lots of people got off at the next stop and I could see her more clearly.
She was at that stage where, to be honest, if you had looked at her, you would have had trouble knowing whether she was pregnant or just over weight. She was also wearing a black padded coat which added to the confusion. I don’t think I would have offered my seat for fear of offending her, it’s not like she was a ship in full sail.
One lady did point out to her that she had stood with her back to everyone sitting down for her whole journey, so they hadn’t realised she was pregnant.
The thing about commuting is, you just put your head down and get on with it. My commute including the walk to the station is 90 minutes. When you spend 3 hours a day commuting you read your book, listen to your music, tweet, look out of the window. I doubt anyone even realised the lady was pregnant, and if they had they may not have been sure. There are countless tales of people offering seats to overweight women and suffering the consequences!
Why did she not just say to someone “excuse me I’m pregnant, can I have your seat?” Even if that one person was so ignorant that they refused I’m pretty sure the 15 other people would have offered up a seat to her.
Or better still she could have gotten one of these…