April 8, 2022, Phoenix- The bus continued, through the back country of west central Texas-the Permian Basin oil towns, the re-awakening desert town of Van Horn, effervescent El Paso, through southern New Mexico, Tucson and on up to this metropolis.
It seems, in more places than not, I encounter souls who make me feel that my life is something out of Canterbury Tales. There are recurring archetypes: The athletic blonde woman who is there to show me health and fitness tips; the young woman with long brown hair, who watches me from a short distance and seems always to be right in front or behind me in a line, not always saying much, but ever concerned with my safety and well-being; the group of Black or Latino men, usually in threes or fours, who look at me as “Uncle G” and are there for my protection; the children who approach me, with their parents’ approval and tell me of things that are of great importance. All of these people have been there on this journey as well. They don’t always introduce themselves, but there is this sense that we’ve seen one another before. They were all on either the train or on this bus, which I have just exited-for the short hop over to Sky Harbor, where I will catch the shuttle that will bring me up to Prescott, and Home Base.
Yes, it is almost as if I have crew around me. There are some of the above-mentioned prototypes, right there in Prescott as well. Ha! I see that one of my team from there was in New Orleans, right at the same time I was there. You have to love this little ball bearing we’re on.