Monday, April 12, 2010

The long walk

Picking strawberries, that’s what you did in the summer at thirteen. Up early to meet the bus, one the schools no longer wanted, with a cranky driver who doubled as field boss.

Spend the day bent over the rows. The weather jumped between blazing sun or pouring rain.

This day the rain came in buckets.

“Can we go home? Please? This is crazy.”

“Keep working.”

We’d show him who’s in charge. “We quit!”

“Okay, start walking.”

Five hours later, we’d covered an unknown distance, drenched and exhausted, only a mile from home the bus passed us. The driver laughed, waved, honked.