Tuesday, December 25, 2007

(S)NOW WAIT


We're waiting for the possibility of snow here in Portland. All the weather forecasts promised the chance for flurries to hit the valley floor. We're still waiting. It's certainly cold enough. A few snowflakes on Christmas day would definitely be appropriate. The mystery continues.
Walking around town this morning it was lovely to see so few cars out, so many more folks walking. Fortunately a few coffeehouses are open so those with no particular place to go can find community. It's suddenly simple outside. Passed an older man pushing a shopping cart with a KFC plastic cup in the child's seat. Saw a couple unloading presents from a van, all were wrapped in white with red ribbons. Corporate sterile.
Yesterday, in the big middle of all the holiday rush in a local store, I went for the exit door just as another guy did too. Katie slipped through, but he and I found ourselves side by side in the threshold. My new "partner," an African-American man about my age turned apologetic. "After you, My Man", I offered. (I've been reading Gordon Parks memoir, Hungry Heart, and the use of the expression "my man" must have crept into my subconscious) Instantly his face lit up. "And a happy holiday to you, my man," he replied. More gratifying than any store-bought item.
The sky has turned gray. Since I began writing this it has begun to snow very lightly. The wait is over.

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