I had the best hour of recent life a few days ago in Brownsville. A lot of my family and a few friends had been at the beach for a week and Drew and I had to drive from South Padre to Brownsville so he could catch a bus back to Dallas. While he was in the bus station i saw this familiar shape and movement a few blocks down the street and even from that far, i could tell it was Cherie.
I met her a few months ago in Deep Ellum after a show. Walking up and down Elm, asking for change, she had her face down to the sidewalk and a faded shirt that said 'Got God?' I could tell somebody had given her a sock and broke her jaw in days past. I talked with her for a few minutes, donated a dollar or two to the unfortunate cause and told her i would be thinking about her. Only when i took her photograph did she ever look up and make eye contact. Some people have had the life beaten out of them by both the world and themselves. After i shot her i hugged her and told her i was only shooting her because i thought she was beautiful and had a story to tell. She didn't really say much else.
When Drew got back to the car in Brownsville i pointed her out and told him i knew her. It seemed unlikely because i had last seen her on the street three months ago about 483 miles away. We walked up though, caller her name and it was her. Even though she had mismatched shoes and stained skin, she looked a lot better than before. I think it freaked her out a little that i knew her but she said she remembered me. Beyond that she wasn't too concerned or emotionally frothy about our reunion. Just asked for a few dollars so she could 'get something to eat.' I helped a little, hugged her and told her to be careful and that it was rough out there, as if she didn't already know that. Drew and I watched her speed off and walked for a bit talking about divine appointments and the like.
I don't know when I'll see her again but like to think i will. I wont know what day she dies, chooses to live or quits running but one if not three of those things will happen. People exist each second of each day, even when we cant see them. Most of the people i have ever met are out there right now doing something or other. Its interesting to think about.
Drew and i got a few blocks down, looked up and saw hoards of green parrots in the sky and on power lines in the evening light and another block later we found a black dog, with grey whiskers. It felt like she had been waiting on us for a while. When we walked off we invited her to come with us and she is sitting at my feet right now at my home here in Dallas, 483 miles away from Brownsville. Her new name is Cherie.