There is a certain connection that you find among the people in Doug Levitt’s photographs on “The Greyhound Diaries” website. It is the sort of connection that you don’t find much anymore in the rest of America. How well do you know your neighbors? Your co-workers? Even that couple sitting next to you in church? It’s that way because we are too busy with our own lives to have the time to connect with others. When you live your life on the pace of those who travel the Greyhound lines though, you have time to sit and talk to people. To connect with people that you may or may not have anything in common with. You won’t know until you talk to them, but when you’re sitting beside someone for 300 miles, you have time to talk.
It is also easy for people to open up to others when they know there is a definite time that they will part ways and probably never see each other again. But during that day or so that they do have time to talk, it’s real. There are no facades and no pretending. Sure, there’s going to be the occasional fish tale, but for the most part these are real people sharing real stories about themselves. For some people, a Greyhound bus is a traveling confessional booth. For others, it is simply a chance to open up and say what needs to be said in a relatively anonymous fashion. This is when the truth really comes out in people. When they know that the person they are talking to is never going to share it with anyone else. Why would they? Why would they tell someone they know, a story told to them by a stranger? This is America after all. Where people don’t fully open up to the one’s closest to them.