On a dark street
We're deep into the Judkins Park neighborhood, coming out the other side onto Martin Luther King, Jr. Way. It's dark out by now, and I turn the bus slowly around the corner. There's a couple standing there, at the zone. A younger dark-skinned fellow with braids, maybe mid-twenties, facing me, and his Caucasian girlfriend hugging him, her face buried in his shoulder, perhaps to stay warm. It's winter, and it's quiet- you can hear the hum of the sodium-vapor streetlamps. The echo of the larger city, in the distance. I gesture, rolling slowly, saying it with my hand- "you want this bus?" With one of his hands that's around her, he gestures back- no. I give him a wave, "okay," and he gives me the peace sign, two fingers. I smiled back to his upward nod, as the electric bus whisked away into the night, making hardly a sound. What I liked about that moment was that it was an acknowledgement between two people that was so minute, occupying such a short space of time, that it will hardly ever be shared or known by anyone else- likely not even his girlfriend, who was standing right there but facing away. And yet, it did happen, two people registering in each other's brains, for a sliver of a moment, living in space and time. Someone once said that we prove our existence by existing in the minds of others. Solidarity in the nighttime hour, underneath a streetlamp.
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