Monday, August 29, 2005

The unsinkable human spirit?

I've walked by them for at least three weeks now. They have staked claim to a serious piece of sidewalk across the street from McPherson Square Park, directly under two looming trees. In the beginning, they would dismantle their "home" each morning, but as they acquired more odds and ends (and even people), the ability to pack it up and transport it became impossible. They are now a fixture on this plot of sidewalk. Each day I discover something new about them through the spying I do. I am intrigued, and each day they haunt my mind for longer periods of time. Last week I discovered the books among their possessions, a couple cracked open and resting on the sidewalk. There is no Janet Evanovich or Da Vinci Code among their collection, only weightier tombs and serious works. They also smell nice (the people, not the books). Homeless people don't usually come with a pleasant aroma, but these folks do (the woman at least). I've also noticed she takes care to change clothes periodically and keeps her hair and appearance neat. Also not common among the homeless. In the past few days, I've noticed the woman talking to passersby. The snippets I catch sound important, full of purpose. What I really want to do is talk to hear their story. I feel like I'd probably be the one enriched. I'll keep on walking...keep on staring until one day it will be too late.

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