“……………………….He slowly and methodically removed the lid from one of the bottles and raised it to his lips. When sated he placed his thumb over the lid and sprinkled some of the precious fluid on his head and face.
continued from July 19, 2012.
This lone traveler seemed oblivious to the fact that he was surrounded by civilization. He was standing next to the driveway to a new shopping center. Only a year or two earlier this center at the northeast corner of Scottsdale Rd. and Shea Blvd. had been a desert with cactus and a lone, leafless, black and white Palo Verde tree which might as well have still been there as far as this traveler was concerned.
As local traffic crossed his path to enter and shop he tended to the task of replacing the lid on his water jug, slung the two bottles back around his neck, checked for something in the pocket of his no longer quite white and much wrinkled dress shirt. Not until these small personal chores had received his thorough attention did he return his focus to the busy, modern world around him. After checking to make sure that the driveway was clear he embarked upon the slow journey meant to accomplish the required efforts to get him safely to the other side. I flinched as a pickup truck lurched to a stop, its bed bouncing up and down in response to the suddenness of feet-on-the-brakes. Other cars piled up behind. The third car in line honked. The man in the pickup left the cab of his truck to hold his hand up to fellow drivers, allowing the traveler the time necessary to reach the other side of the driveway.
When the traffic snarl returned to normal the driver of the Chevy pickup drove to the other end of the shopping center and parked, apparently in anticipation of a repeat performance at the other entrance. A customer entered my store. I busied myself with samples and chatted with the daughter of the owner of The Pink Pony and my workday began. Though I had not yet met him, this customer’s husband would someday become a close friend. The Frame Factory and the life that centered around it would become a headful of memories.