Monday, June 1, 2009

A Helping Hand.

She was 25 but she still needed someone to hold her hand, it wasn't because she couldn't do things by herself, she was in fact very capable. She liked to think she could do anything and everything on her own. Why she couldn't go to her job interview alone was not something she would think about too much because it didn't count compared to all the other things she could do by herself.

She had an idea of where she was going, but she would feel less nervous is he was there and could tell her where to get off the bus. It was a good thing he came because when the bus kept going up the hill and went under the freeway, she knew she was entering completely new territory. He rang the stop and motioned to her that it was time to get off. It was funny how she sat far away from him even though there were plenty of empty seats, did she even realize the irony of the situation? It was another thing she wouldn't think about too much.

When the bus doors opened, she immediately inhaled a smell that made her want to vomit. She had to swallow hard to combat the heaves that were on it's way up. She couldn't quite pin point the smell, it was a combination of dead fish mixed with the odor of feet that were in shoes too long. She hesitated and turned around with questioning eyes that asked, 'are you sure this is our stop?' He nodded a yes and gave her a little nudge. She paid her fare and stepped out onto a street that matched the deteriorating smell. This was the part of the city that was ignored by the tax payers money, a refuge for those that would put up with rats and garbage because the rent was cheap. It was the part of the city where shop owners put bars on their windows and would buzz their customers in because they always kept their doors locked even during business hours.

Thanks Chris P!

It was the part of the city where the newspaper stands remained empty because someone forgot that there are people who speak English in this part of town who would like the daily news. It was the part of the city where the streets were used as wastebaskets and trash would pile up so high that children who didn't know the difference would jump into it and play like they see the kids on TV do with piles of leaves. It wasn't the part of the city where she wanted to be in, but she did have an interview and she always kept her appointments.

He held her hand as they walked and said that she should text him when she was done. She assured him it would be about half an hour, 40 minutes max.

Thanks Ruslik!

As they approached the building, she thought it looked like a section of an outdoor strip mall, rather than the tall posh office buildings that her bus passed going through downtown. If there wasn't a sign, haphazardly leaning in the window and a florescent light buzzing with the name of the firm, she would still think it was the wrong place. In all her fantasies about having a grown up job, working in a place that shared a wall with a Chinese restaurant and perpetually had bird shit on the window never even entered her mind. People like herself, well dressed, college educated, mild mannered people were not the kind of people who worked in places like this. She thought about bombing the interview on purpose, but deep down she knew she wouldn't because she was six months into the job hunt and was desperate for anything she could get.

Thanks Wolf Soul!

He walked her to the elevator and squeezed her hand for good luck before walking away. There she was alone, on her own just like she prided herself for and as the elevator doors closed she thought she saw the reflection of a confident, self sufficient person who was going to nail this interview, even if she did need someone to hold her hand to get here.


S.S. said...

you painted this scene so vividly, i felt like i was in her place. could really feel the emotions she was going through. what happens next...

M.J. said...

We all need a helping hand sometime....

I really like this line: "In all her fantasies about having a grown up job, working in a place that shared a wall with a Chinese restaurant and perpetually had bird shit on the window never even entered her mind." I think when we're young, we have the grand visions of our future careers. I envisioned glamor, fulfillment and I realize, work is work. I have a great job, don't get me wrong, but the rose color glasses are long gone.

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