It was a crisp winter day, one where you can just barely see your breath when you walk outside.
She was the only person waiting at the bus stop that quiet morning. As she climbed onto the bus, she dropped some coins into the farebox from her gloved hand and stood near the front. Dressed in faux military fatigues, a sherpa hat with a red star on the front, and a shoulder bag decorated with Chinese characters and a picture of Chairman Mao, she stood out from the usual mix of passengers.
As I swung around the corner onto Hastings Street, she moved closer and asked, “Do you go by Slocan Street?”
“Yes, I do.”
“Can you let me know when we get there?”
“I’m looking for Triumph Street, and I know I go down Slocan.”
“It’s about a 3 or 4 block walk — but then you look like you’re dressed for a Long March.”
< Silence >
“Do you know, are there lots of cabs around there?”