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Friday, October 18, 2013

Bus Stop: Nicollet and 24th; or No, How YOU Doin’?

I am waiting for the bus.

Bright fall evening, corner of Nicollet and 24th.  McDonald’s is at my back; the lights on Nicollet are a stone’s throw in front of me.  Having missed one bus by minutes, I am forced to wait another 25, maybe 30 minutes for the next one.

Still, I am feeling particularly pleased.  The sky is the high, clear blue that we remember from our childhoods, the nearby restaurants are fragrant, and I’m relatively sure, in that nonsensical, self-delusional way that I have, that everyone likes me.

I laugh softly at myself.  Yeah.  I’m pretty sure everyone likes me. 

There’s no arguing, though, that it’s a beautiful day.  We are weeks away from snowfall, from the kind of cold that turns all porches into freezers, all cars into remarkably poor sleds. 

For the moment, I am happy to be boot- and mitten-free.  I vow to myself that I will remember this, that I will remember what it feels like to be wearing a skirt without leggings, to wear high heels without risking permanent cellular damage or a spectacular slip-and-slide, like last year’s, where I found myself flat on my back and half-way under a parked car.

I grin at the memory.  The fall had been so fast, so smooth, that it hadn’t hurt at all, actually, and the look on the face of a passing motorist as I had slid had been priceless…

The world’s largest car pulls up, stops for the red light.  The music is loud, but not too loud, a bass-heavy, I-could-dance-to-this kind of music.


 The passenger, a handsome, dark-skinned man with a grin to match mine leans out his window, says something to me.

“What’s that?” I shout.

“I said ‘How you doin’, beautiful’?”

The grin on my face broadens.  

I don’t always get hollered at by strangers, but when I do, I like to take charge of the situation.

“Well I’m doing well now, thank you!”

“Well all right,” the passenger says, all smiles.  The light changes and the world’s largest car pulls ahead. Smiley leans out his window, yells as they drive away. “All right!  You have a blessed day now!”

I raise my left arm, wiggle my fingers at him as the car takes a left at the green light and keeps on keepin' on.

It’s a bright fall evening, corner of Nicollet and 24th

And I am waiting for the bus.

32 comments:

Buttons said...

Oh I love when that happens, random "How you doin's" :) B

Pearl said...

Buttons, I think people are drawn to other people. And when both of those people are grinning for no good reason? Party! :-)

Simply Suthern said...

I always "howdy" folks I dont know. Sometimes you get a smile back, Sometimes not so much.

Pearl said...

Simply, people always get a "howdy" back from me!

Delores said...

Well there are two people who went on through their day with a happy memory that could bring a smile to their faces. We need more of those days.

Pearl said...

Delores, you and I are in wild agreement. :-)

Eva Gallant said...

How you doin', beautiful, makes for a great start to your day!

Pearl said...

Eva, I am actually willing to pay for such a service, maybe have a guy -- or a gal! -- drop by once, twice a week. :-)

joeh said...

I hate random greetings from strangers...but then maybe it's because I'm cranky.

If I want a blessed day, I don't need a stranger to tell me.

I may have issues.

klahanie said...

Aha, human Pearl,

And now you getting a happy "arf! arf!" from me!

Happy bus day to you, human Pearl.

Pawsitive wishes,

Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar! :)

Pearl said...

joeh, you, then, I give a curt nod to. :-) I've acknowledged your existence and we need carry it no further than that. :-)

klahanie, :-) And I cheery "hey, there, pooch!" to you, too, Penny!

Susan Kane said...

Brief positive encounters that make one feel good: priceless.

jenny_o said...

Kindred spirits; they're everywhere!

fishducky said...

So, how ARE you doin', beautiful?

Sioux said...

Pearl--The whole story is charming, and the last line is a genuine gem...

Shelly said...

Self delusional? Nah. And howdy-do to you~

Christine said...

While it was a lovely story, I couldn't stop laughing about the "porches become freezers". I'm guessing people in the south have no idea that we northerners actually can (and do) store leftovers right outside our doors. How else do you have enough room for all the Thanksgiving food?

Joanne Noragon said...

When you're smilin', the whole world smiles with you.

Like they say, smile before you answer the phone. Your caller can hear it.

Geo. said...

Drive-by compliments and blessings. Certainly preferable to what we have in my city. I like it!

Stef said...

Awesome!!

Elephant's Child said...

Love it, and wishing you many more memories like that to capture and cherish.

vanilla said...

Happiness spread all around at the corner of Nicollet and 24th! Good deal.

Gigi said...

It's a shame that people don't actually acknowledge one another anymore to the point that it stands out when one does.

And with that thought in mind - I'm going to step out of my own little world and make a point of acknowledging every one I come across this weekend. Or, at the very least, one or two of them.

BLissed-Out Grandma said...

Nice! I grew up not trusting strangers, but eventually I learned that at least some of them can be pretty cheery, and when you click with them, it really does raise your spirits.

The Chicken's Consigliere said...

And I am also pretty sure that everyone likes you.

Daisy said...

See Pearl - Everyone does like you! :-)

Nessa Locke said...

There's a guy at my job who's always saying crazy things to me like "Hey, Sexypants."
He's the same age as my second-born, but somehow that just makes it better. ;)

Timothy Hecht said...

1977 Cadillac Brougham. I used to work on these as kid.

Leenie said...

October skies are the best (because the yellow and orange trees are complementary colors to the blues and purple hues of the sky--but who cares about color theory). It's just nice to have a few more days of reprieve before being confined to the indoors or punished by arctic weather. A "How you doin, beautiful?" is just the cherry on top.

River said...

What a delightful moment! I'm grinning right across my face for you. That sort of thing just makes a good day perfect.

Daisy said...

Well all right! :D

Pauline said...

See? Everybody does like you!