Featured, Sundry

Waiting for the L-Owl

Saturday morning was volunteering with Mount Sutro Stewards via One Brick. A contingent of Cisco employees appeared from their haunts across the region as part of some sort of New Hire / outreach program. Nice kids. “I work for IronPort.” We were clearing a path for a trail re-alignment. The first step is removing the “duff” which is the top soil and its organic matter. Organic matter decays over time so it is not the best bed for a trail. Clearing the “duff” is harder than it sounds because the aforementioned organic material is layers and layers of interconnected, knotty roots. It is good, hard work.

I napped in the sunshine for the afternoon.

Later, after seeing Someone Special I was waiting for the L-Owl on Market St. A motley crew — the guy who asked if he could borrow my phone but since his own phone was dead he couldn’t retrieve the number. There was a “crazy homeless woman” and a short guy with a case of Modelo Especial. This guy checked the next bus on his cell then popped open a beer. He continued drinking on the bus, which was raucous.

Still waiting, I noticed a pretty gal in high heels on the corner. I had a moment of hope that she would join our party but pretty girls in high heels do not belong on the night bus. She very subtly hailed a cab. Another guy showed up smoking a joint. He offered to trade with the beer drinker for a cigarette after the beer guy offered the joint guy a can of Modelo Especial.

My personal drama involved the “crazy homeless lady”. While shifting around to pull on her gloves, I noticed a ragged slip of paper drop to the ground. I figured it could be her transfer and in another time with a different passenger I probably would have said something. But this evening I rationalized my disgust towards the homeless woman as wanting to be a fly on the wall. “Writers are parasites watching the lives of others” or such was a line in the movie I had caught earlier in the evening with Someone Special.

A bit later the lady was shifting around again and rummaging through her stuff with increasing agitation. She was clearly upset and looking for something important. I wondered what would happen to her if she couldn’t board the bus. I wondered if I had a $1.50 in change to help her out, if it came to that. I took a look around and spied that ragged little slip of paper in the street. I fetched it, found that it was not merely ragged but soiled, and I handed it to her. She was grateful and remarked that hers was a ragged slip of paper. She kept it firmly in her gloved fingers and as far as I know she had a good night.

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Categories: Featured, Sundry