Another Surreal Day in San Francisco

I was enjoying my walk through the city when it began to sprinkle. Not deterred by a little moisture, I continued along my route, down Market Street, past the Ferry Building, along the Embarcadero to Pac Bell Park then return. Except, that by the time I was walking back up Bush Street towards my apartment, the little moisture had turned into a steady downfall. Enjoying the wetness, breathing in the cleansed air, I proceeded cautiously, careful not to slip. At Bush and Battery an older gentleman passed me in the crosswalk, whispering, “Good morning, beautiful” as we crossed. More amused than anything, I smiled and continued my trek.

As I passed Montgomery a dark-haired, dark-eyed, twenty-something hipster smiled at me and purred, “You are a beautiful woman.” Again, I smiled, even more bemused, because I was feeling not beautiful at all, imagining myself to resemble a drowned rat.

As I neared Kearny, a gentleman who appeared to be homeless mumbled, “Pretty.” I walked a few more steps, stopping at the corner, waiting for the light to change. I felt a light touch on my shoulder. I looked over, and there was the homeless man, his big, sad brown eyes staring into mine. Hunched over, he pointed to the bouquet of wildflowers, dripping, in my hand. “Pretty,” he once again mumbled, fumes of alcohol wafting my way. “I’m really a virgin,” he continued, wobbling a little on his feet, “but can I have a quarter anyway?” I shook my head no, said goodbye, and walked as the light turned green.

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