Friday, June 06, 2008

A Day in the Park, Part 2

Today was the annual community day at my company. Like last year, I chose to work in Prospect Park. This year we were meeting on the side of the park closest to me, so I decided to walk, a nice pleasant leisurely walk that got me there in just over 30 minutes. I'd also gone to the gym just before, which, in retrospect, was probably too much exercise to have taken before jumping into 2 1/2 hours of manual labor.

Because right now, I am exhausted. My back and arms ache. I walked partway home and then caught a bus, fully intending to get inside my apartment and get right to work. (We don't have to work today, but I thought I'd rather get things out of the way today and then have the weekend clear - I have much to catch up on, and it's technically a work day, which I am getting paid for, even if most of my co-workers are now at the Boat Basin After-Party drinking beer.) Where was I? Oh, yes, so I've just hauled laundry down the stairs and did another up and down the stairs run to move it to the dryer, and I'm spent. I don't want to turn on my work computer. I want to take a nap.

My job was once again picking up trash with the claw thing. My hand once again began to ache, although the shaking stopped about halfway through lunch. But we were in a different area of the park this time, and this time I was mostly picking up condom wrappers and condoms. (I must have gotten about 100 of the former, but luckily only 25 or so of the latter. I won't think too hard about why the difference in number.) Obviously we were in a popular location for trysts - I was thinking maybe prostitutes worked that corner of the park but someone suggested it might be a rendezvous area for just men. Either way, I would not walk past that section after dark, having seen what I've seen.

I also found 2 one dollar bills. One was half hidden under some leaves, the other under a fallen log next to it. The second had a slug curled up inside. I later wiped them down with the wet nap that came with my lunch, (as if the money we handle every day is that much cleaner) and decided if I saw a homeless person between the park and home, I would give them up. Of course I didn't. They are now in the register till at Starbucks.

What a lame story, right? Didn't pass a homeless person, but I found a Starbucks. I am a sad, sad, person.

Last year I wrote a story after my Prospect Park day, with a character who found a photograph in the park and went on a quest to find who was in it. I never finished revising that story, and I'm on deck for my writing group, so I should probably pull it out and dust it off. Maybe the story just needs some used condoms and a slug.


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