Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Smoke up in the air

This was pure happiness. A worker his feet dangling in the air, about 50 meters above ground, taking a smoke pause from his work on a building.
I noticed him at the corner of 14th and W. Waiting for the light to change on my way to work. I could not see his face, only that he was smoking, sitting at the edge of the upcoming luxury condominiums that will be ready soon.
Two stories below him, one worker is gulping some food.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Honk if you love Jesus

There are mayoral elections coming up in DC and signs are popping up all over. It is becoming routine on my way to work to see people picketing with large green or red signs. "Fenty" or "Cropp". Standing in the street already hot and sticky even at 8 AM. I usually honk for support for all of them. I am not yet a citizen so I can't vote but still I honk. Just to let the people know that I saw their signs. Breaking the silence of indifference, giving them a little joy by letting them think that their standing in the heat has had an impact.
Tonight coming back from work (and after the small problem on the road), I pass one man standing by himself on the sidewalk of Florida Ave. He is holding a hand-written sign and it takes me longer to decipher it. It is written "Pray for peace in Jerusalem" on one side and "Honk if you love Yeshua (Jesus)" on the other. I have to fight the desire to honk. I drive away looking at the rear view mirror and the man standing there in silence.

There is nothing

On my way back from work. For a chance I am driving down Rhode Island Ave. On the downhill right after the Carmelite place. I'm not sure how it happened. All I know is that I was stopped a the light and then colliding with the car in front of me. A white car with licence plates in Maryland. We both stopped and I see a woman getting out of her car. She looks really annoyed (and I can't blame her, I just collided with her!). I put my distress signals and walk to her, looking at her car. There is no track of the shock. It was quite a mild shock (I was stopped after all) so I am not surprised but still not quite sure of what she is going to do.
She looks at me and I say "There is nothing on your car. My licence plate is bent but nothing on your side". She inspects her car. Some marks here and there but I'm not sure these are from the shock. Probably there before as she does not point to them. She smiles. "I was so worried" she said. I smile back. "I'm not sure how it happened and I was worried too". She walks back to her car and wishes me a nice evening. I go back to my car and we both leave.
An incident handled with civility in the country of lawsuits. How refreshing...

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Death in the morning

I could not see what it was until it was too late. I saw what seems a small brown bag being bounced around under the car. I realize now that it was trying to escape. The driver probably never saw it. A grey BMW with Maryland plates, convertible with the top down and the man enjoying the morning sun.
Below his car, I saw the brown bag being tossed up and down until it got trapped it under the rear tire. The bag turned red and I saw the feathers being smashed. Instinctively, even though I was also driving, I closed my eyes. Too late. The image of the red splash on the pavement stayed with me all day.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Riding a dog

Today I went hiking again on the Billy Goat trail. I like it more and more for the convenience it affords: close to DC and safe enough to be done alone (although some incident may disprove this..). As I approach the trail I see a large dog and a toddler holding a leash and walking by its side. What make the scene remarkable is that the dog is larger than the child. This kid could easily ride that dog and she may be thinking of it as her steps are still uncertain and not completely stable. The dog is walking at the kid's pace, clearly knowing that any faster would be impossible for that child to follow. I can't decide who is the more admirable sight. The dog or the child.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Dog's heaven

I'm on a long walk exploring some of DC neighborhoods. It is a hot day and I've been walking for about 2 hours, making my way back home slowly. Sheridan Circle on Massachusetts Ave has a large statue at its center and it is flanked by 2 water fountains. A woman is standing by the fountain while her dog is literally taking a shower. His foot are in the water and he is going from one faucet to the other, clearly enjoying the reprieve from the heat. The woman is motionless. She seems to be willing to wait as long as her dog wants to stay and she is enduring the sun while her dog is relaxing at the pool. It is funny to see though, a dog so completely content without being jumpy and excited. In the 10 minutes it takes me to walk around the square, I see that the odd couple has left the first fountain and the dog is now having fun in the other one. Boundless enthusiasm of an animal.