Saturday, January 9, 2010

And then the sun shone in...

I ride the bus. Every day. And so I have many, many opportunities to learn interesting life lessons. I used to ride a bus that went by 2 methadone clinics and the people I rode with gave me a whole new perspective. Now I ride a bus that goes by 4 different agencies that serve people who are homeless. My fellow passengers now are mostly men, mostly down on their luck, shabby, gentle souls who are polite, respectful and thoughtful. It's like riding with a congregation of the Dharma Bums that Jack Kerouac wrote about. For the most part, I enjoy their company.
Yesterday, on a very cold, gloomy morning the bus station was jam packed with folks trying to stay out of the cold at 7 in the morning so I choose to wait outside. Another person who chose to wait in the cold was a man in a wheelchair that I ride with often. He is always polite, always helpful, a genuine pleasure to be around and homeless. And there was a woman who complained incessantly...incessantly. He tried to redirect each and every complaint. The driver arrived and was going to let us get in out of the cold. She announced that she had no bus pass and intended to ride. The driver just looked at her. The man spoke to her quietly and she asked if she could ride to the homeless shelter..please. The driver let her on. As we waited for the time of departure, she continued her rant and the man who could have complained about everything, continued to try to redirect her. She began to bitterly complain about the cold...incessantly. And suddenly, a bus moved and the sun shone in...so brightly it filled the bus with light. It felt a little miraculous, okay... a lot miraculous. She began to shriek because it was in her eyes...shriek. My fellow passenger gently said to her..."you would curse the cure for your bitter complaint because it surprised you?" Lesson learned...

Be an explorer...read, surf the internet, visit customers, enjoy arts,watch children play...do anything to prevent yourself from becoming a prisoner of your knowledge, experrience and current view of the world." Charles Thompson

Grace in small things:
1. I don't have to carry everything I own with me.
2. I am warm 90% of the time.
3. When I am cold, I can get warm.
4. I have the opportunity to learn, explore, grow and change based on what I find out.
5. The sun does shine about 360 days of the year in New Mexico.

9 comments:

Stephanie said...

Beautiful story Leau...

we should be so grateful, for so many things...

I am always amazed by the gentle heart and courage so many people have that have every right not to be so heartful.

x..x

moongipsies@msn.com said...

soooo very wonderful

Allegra Smith said...

It takes one gentle soul to understand the language and the meaning. Need I say more?

Christina said...

i felt your words, all the way down in my soul.
i am going to take a bit of that sunshine with me, if you don't mind, my friend.
love ya!

Chris said...

she's very angry.

This image is so great.

Gwen said...

What a beautiful and instructive story, on so many levels.

Allegra Smith said...

Things alright? thinking of you and missing your sunshine today. Sending you love as always with a pinch of pepper.

Anonymous said...

Hey Leau! I read your blog today and just wanted to say I LOVE IT!!!!!! I'll be checking this regularily - so fun, so wise, so interesting, just fantastic! Kim

Paula S In New Mexico said...

I am always so amazed how you post photos of places I drive by all the time but you have a way of presenting images that causes me to look again and again. Fresh and original. Just like you.