A Spy on the Bus: Memoir of a Company Rat by Margean Gladysz

By Margean Gladysz

It used to be 1946, i used to be 18, a school graduate, and approximately to turn into a secret agent. i used to be going to ‘hit the road’. yet what used to be it like—this road—when I had rarely been out of Kalamazoo?” writes Margean Gladysz in her letters to her mom and dad written from 1946 to 1949. Unearthed from an attic trunk in 2003 those letters aspect her employment with the good Lakes Greyhound Bus corporation as a firm rat. As a set, they shape the contents of A secret agent at the Bus.
Young Margean’s “can do” perspective permeates the letters as she stories day-by-day actions in regards to the humans she meets, the price of foodstuff and inn rooms, the nation-state vegetation, the politics of the corporate and the simplest part–her spying actions. Disguised as a passenger, she rides on bus routes to varied cities to monitor bus drivers’ honesty–or loss of, the line stipulations, apparatus dealing with, and all issues the corporate bosses had to be aware of. those have been the times sooner than surveillance cameras and Margean turns into the boss man’s eyes and ears.
The worry of being came upon or “turned-up” as a undercover agent was once continually a fear. She needed to conscientiously plan her bus routes to prevent being famous.

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Billboards advertising Louis Vuitton now form the backdrop to the enormous tented camp, which includes generators, basic showers and pungent porta-loos. Bright-orange robes hang across one campsite, behind them monks who offer guidance to the protestors. At another spot, so-called blackshirts, accused of being the violent, extremist wing of the movement, sleep in the back of a pick-up truck, bulletproof vests hanging over the sides. As I pass, people call out to offer me soup or a bowl of curry and rice.

What am I doing? But there’s no time for reconsideration now. My brain snaps into action and so does my mouth. ’ David and I are with our Thai producer, Jum, who’s tiny but a powerhouse in the bureau, and Paul Gates, our unflappable Aussie producer. Our driver, Khun Tu, has parked the car off the main drag, a recent work-survival course dictating my instructions to him. Park rear-end to the kerb, check. Out of the line of fire, check. Plan an escape route … um, sort of. Poor guy, I think, as the rest of us head counter-intuitively towards the gunshots.

I’m confronted with everything I’ve been avoiding since we left Africa. ABC postings are rotated every three to four years. If I don’t apply now, the window will close. We’re already living in the region. It’s obvious that I would be a strong candidate. But Rowan is only one year into his two-year contract. We’re settled, and I’m not actually sure if I want to work at all, let alone in a job that means being on call 24/7, lots of pressure and too much travel. The idea of so much time away from the kids is almost unbearable and I’m feeling a strong pull to have another child.

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