The younger man pays with the change he’s carefully counted. He’d just asked how much the bus costs around here. After I give him his transfer, he says pleasantly, in a distinct accent, “Hey. I am trying to get to Everett?”

“Oh, I wish you had told me that before you paid, ’cause this transfer won’t work on the Everett bus.” I can see that for him, every coin counts. “I would’ve just had you pay the next driver. I’m sorry!”
“It’s okay. It is my first day here! I come from Uganda, Africa!”
“Oh, wow! Welcome to Seattle!”
“Thank you! Can you let me know when it is time, I will sit up here so I know where to get off. I am just a little bit nervous, I don’t know where anything is.”
“That’s okay, you just came across the ocean! This will be easy! You have already done much more difficult traveling! Seattle to Everett… you’re not going to have any problem!”
He laughs, warm with relief and the glow of acceptance.

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Nathan Vass has had work displayed in over twenty photography shows, designed a book and three album covers, including two for Neil Welch. His “My Favorite Things” tour at Seattle Art Museum was the highest-attended such tour there. Nathan is also the director of eight films, four of which have shown at festivals, and one of which premiered at Henry Art Gallery. He owns a photography business, Two Photography, with Larry Huang, and has photographed a dozen-plus weddings. Born in South Central LA, he holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Washington, and is also a prolific writer and sometime painter. Formerly a Hollywood resident, he still contributes film reviews to Erik Samdahl's site, Filmjabber. In addition, he holds a side job as a public bus driver, which he enjoys almost as much as directing films- if not slightly more so! He is a two-time winner of Metro’s Operator of the Month award and holds a record number of commendations.