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Friday, August 13, 2010

An Impressionable Moment While Waiting at a Traffic Light...

A week or two prior to purchasing S/V Blondie-Dog, I found myself rather aimlessly driving throughout Florida chasing one scammy Craigslist sailboat listing after another. I had made the drive from St. Petersburg on up to Jacksonville and then continued down the coastline to St. Augustine and later Daytona Beach and on further south while looking at one crapped out boat after another.

I now found myself waiting at a traffic light in Ft. Pierce or what the hell, it might have been Daytona or Stuart for all that it matters... after once again having wasted my time checking out another "project" boat. While waiting on the light to turn and contemplating the futility that I had so far encountered searching for a decent enough boat, I couldn't help but observe a young twenty-something year old up ahead holding a hand-drawn cardboard sign.

The blond young girl was thin as a rail and wearing a simple, shear tight-fitting dress and was noticeably pregnant. Off to the side lying neatly on the grass were some eight or nine small plastic grocery shopping bags each holding her only possessions and each tied up in a knot at the end. The young woman simply stood there with one of those blank, distant stares while holding up her sign.

Scrawled on her handmade sign was, "Homeless, hungry, 7 months pregnant and 1,000 miles away from home."

A moment later I notice the driver in front of me reaching into her pocket-book and then extending her dark skin-toned, flabby arm out the window to hand over some folding money. The traffic light then turns green and I'm suddenly feeling quite remorseful for not having reached into my wallet as well.

As I continue driving, I contemplate whether to turn back and ask whether she'd allow me to drive her home where ever that might be. I wonder whether she'd trust a total stranger and I think about how aimless my life is and I do some math in my head to calculate the cost of four tanks of gas or so, a trip to Wal-mart for a few toiletries and clothing articles and whatever women have to have and what-not.

When I finally turn the car around, I find that I've driven another three or four miles down the road and made a few turns and simply can't find my way back. The next day I find myself driving to Indiantown near Lake Okeechobee and thinking back to the scene in the movie "Pay it Forward", when the addict tells the despondent woman on the bridge, "Let me help you so that I can help myself".

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