Monday, April 02, 2007

Simple Pleasures

I left my Sacramento office today and stepped into a warm, sunshiney afternoon. I walked over to the taxi stand a block away and found five cabbies sitting together under a shade tree, talking and laughing.

The one with white hair saw me peeking into a cab and called out to me, "You need taxi?" I nodded and smiled. A younger man got up, bringing a small rug he had been sitting on with him. "Airport?" asked the white-haired cabbie. "Yes," I replied, laughing. I don't know how he knew, since I didn't have any luggage.

He held out his hand to me, a large piece of grapefruit in his palm, a friendly offering. I knelt to break a section off, but he handed it to me and waved me away. "No, no, take it, it is for you," he said kindly. I thanked him and climbed into the waiting minivan.

I settled in and ate the warm, sour-sweet grapefruit, its tanginess pinching the inside of my cheeks. Later, as I sat on the plane waiting for take-off, I could still taste the grapefruit on my lips and I thought of the man I didn't know, sitting on the grass, sharing food with a stranger.

2 comments:

Bruce said...

Something similar happened to me in Bahrain a few years ago. It was really enlightening to sit (squat) with a group of 40-to-60 year old arab taxi drivers and share a meal of chicken, rice, and veggies with them.

City Elf said...

I should have guessed that if anybody would have had a similar experience, it would be you. How's trix?