Today I met two very different ladies while riding home from work.
Terry approached me while I was waiting for the bus, just after I got off work. She asked me if I had any spare change as she needed to ride the bus. Terry is tall, thin, in her mid 40s, and Indian (from the sub-continent of India, not an American aborigine). I asked her how much she needed, and she told me $5. Only it wasn’t just $5, it was “$5 because I need to ride the bus to some place” (I couldn’t understand everything she said over the traffic noise, and her accent). She repeated the need to ride the bus as a litany, very much like a person with a mental illness. I don’t know if she had one or not. I could not tell, which doesn’t mean a lot. The mentally ill are often surprisingly good at masking their handicaps.
So I reached into my wallet and gave her a $5 bill. She was kind of shocked. She thanked me several times, shook my hand, and asked me my name. That’s when I learned her name, and asked her how to spell it. (A curiosity of mine, since I’m married to a Teri, and there seems to be 20 different ways to spell that name)
Later, when I reached the Red Line (the only subway in LA) I ran across a lady I’ve seen several times before. She has lovely gray hair, in very long dreadlocks, and I’ve always appreciated the way her hair looks. Tonight she was also wearing a shalwar kamiz, which is the traditional dress for Pakistan, and parts of India (from what I understand). I just had to compliment her. One thing led to another, and we ended up talking until I got off the next bus.
Carol teaches music at the Musician Institute, in Hollywood, and is quite well known as a singer. With so much in common, we had a fun time talking. Well at least I did, and she made the motions as if she did (which is all that counts, right?). I’m looking forward to seeing her again, and talking shop. Musicians are so interesting to me anyway, and the smart artistic ones are even better. Carol was all that and more. I’ll bet she a great teacher too. She’s got that mother earth goddess thing down pat. Walks with real gravity, she does.