The Life and Times of Barry the BUG
The Search for the Elusive NEBOGUEB
Barry the Bug left his car, a Beetle, and caught the bus into town.
Dot, the bus driver, gave him a smile. “Haven’t seen you in while”.
“Morning, Barry”, said uncle Larry, who always sat with the pack at the back.
The traffic was in disarray up all the way to the Rohais. Barry asked his uncle why people don’t get out of their cars and into buses. “There are lots of clues to what one could do”, said Larry enigmatically. “Some of them don’t know where the buses go. But generally there are as many reasons as seasons. In fact, it’s so complicated I’ve given up thinking about it”.
But Barry did think about it. If he’d had a skin, these centipede-like queues would have made it crawl. Even without lungs (bugs have spiracles through their exoskeleton), the CO2 from so many single-occupant cars had him fuming.
“Most of them play King Canute about their bus route”, said Larry. “NABOBs, I call them, Never Actually Been On a Bus. Then there are people who have Never Even Been On a Guernsey Bus – NEBOGUEBs. Your uncle Carbuncle – I think he’s a NEBOGUEB”.
Barry liked uncle Carbuncle, he was a bit of a petrol-head, and had given him his Beetle as a reward for getting his licence. Carbuncle was gregarious, and would like the friendly banter on the bus. He’d also recognise the luxury of having a chauffeur who would pick you up and drop you off anywhere along the route – within reason. That Carbuncle had Never Even Been On a Guernsey Bus – well, it was unthinkable. He would have to challenge him about it.
In town, Barry tried to warm up for his show-down with Carbuncle. He asked Jeff the Chef if he had ever been on a Guernsey Bus. “Oui mon vieux, and keep up the rhyme man, I ride ‘em all the time”, said Jeff. “The back seat is neat, just the treat. A Number 7 is the best machinery for scenery. You can look over the hedgerows better than in a Land Rover. And when the waves shoot so bold and cold over the road at Cobo, now THAT even beats the dolphin feats at Key Largo”.
When he got home, Barry rang uncle Carbuncle.
“Uncle dear, have you ever been on a Guernsey Bus?” he asked.
“Not for years”, said Carbuncle, calming his fears. “I worked hard and travelled far to earn my garage full of cars. I’m not leaving them at home to drone around on a bus”.
“But you have been on a Guernsey bus?” repeated Barry. “Well, yes”, admitted uncle Carbuncle. Barry was so merry he almost shed a tear. No NEBOGUEB here.
[To be continued...]