I woke up with religion on my mind this morning. Twice this week, two people, 100 miles apart, 2 days apart, brought to my remembrance Matthew Chapter 20: 17-28. What a coincidence. The two people don’t know each other, but they came upon the same scripture. It is a verse that can be seen several ways. Continue reading
The middle of the week. Different city, changed circumstances, highly dynamic living situation. Stressful in some ways, but I meet each challenge that arise. I remember that much of this is my choice. I could have taken another route. Lived in my car maybe, but I didn’t do that. I pushed to live a more conventional way.
I have not and may not achieve a conventional life with a reassuring routine and a sense of stability. Does not exist. I don’t live on the streets per say, but I most definitely don’t live in a way I would call nourishing to the psyche. My experiences of the last 7 years has conditioned me to tolerate the pain.
In any event, I have more trials ahead. I am getting better at seeing them, but still not as adept at managing them without collateral impact on the living condition. One thing that has changed is I am certainly more accepting of the pain.
Anyway, the week has gone on. Many things have happened that I’ve decided not to catalog in detail. Just going on and striving to be productive and live okay despite the circumstances. Change is a major force in life and you have to embrace the change.
When you think of Southern Calif., images sometimes come to mind of surfing, waves, tolerance, and a culture where everyone can just get along. You think of the past media portrayals of a place where acceptance reigns. People from all walks of life can be as they are without imposition. Even the homeless can get along without too much trouble. Times have changed. Large increases in rent stand to undermine Nuns in carrying out the mission of charity to some of the least fortunate.
When no sign is posted saying, No Turn On Red, you expect to be able to turn left on red. An officer disagreed with that about 30 minutes ago and pulled me over. No blue lights this time.
He said he was giving me a warning. Asked me if I thought it was okay to turn on red. I said yes sir. He turned his head with a seemingly stern countenance as if he just spoke to an ignoramus and drove off at high speed. I looked in the direction of his departure, shocked at what just transpired.
Something bad seems to be in the works. All I can do is be who I am. It is strange returning to a city that seems more inhospitable than what you remembered.
VP Biden visited the area today and last night, the police must have had an eye out for people. Unfortunate, the way it was handled. Many of us drive through the area all the time and you’d think there would be a better system in place. All these surveillance devices in use today, and they still don’t work right. Inconveniencing people to a disturbing level and creating bad relationships in the community. Maybe part of the lesson is, when word of big time politicians are headed your way, find a rock to crawl under.
The existence of Apple iPhones with super tight security is a good thing. This type of security design needs to be more widespread. If you drive an older car, it is far to easy for third parties to open your car door, examine any tech gadgets you might have lying around in the back seat somewhere, put them back when done, and leave. The only tell-tale sign being a reduced battery charge.
I depart a public library, and while waiting to make a left turn, the car behind me gets impatient. I decide to turn right to make a turn at a McDonald’s a little ways down. I stop in a small Chinese restaurant adjoining a Family Dollar, next to the McDonald’s. The food was outside my budget and I resume my journey back on the road.
As I make my way down the street, a patrol car begins to motion itself in what can be described as the vehicle version of a predatory stance. Right as I pass, the car makes its way right behind me with blue lights at full parade. I pulled into a parking space in front of an auto repair shop vacated for the day. I turn my lights off.
The officer steps forward and says something about my lights not being bright enough. I turned the lights back on and he said the parking lights where on. He reached into the car, flipped my lights into the parking mode to illustrate his point. I left it at that. He asked for license an said as long as license and insurance was current, there was nothing to worry about.
He took a good amount of time to return. My record is clean. He came back and said drive safe.
I drove away. I was very angry. Felt harrassed. This city is one of the few that when I visit, I am reminded that I am definitely not from here. It is odd that I can live in other cities for years, but this one city has trigger happy and ticket anxious police.
I would not have written anything but for the second cop trailing me in another part of the city 30+ miles away from the first encounter. That officer slowed down and trailed me carefully. I decided to change my route and the officer turned into a gas station, parking in a position to keep watch. I simply turned around, reversed my route and decided to eat somewhere else.
All this after leaving a public library where I used WiFi to check my most recent pay stub and have an e-mail chat with a friend. I never thought the evening would take such a disappointing turn. Such recurrences in this particular city is odd indeed. Knocks the shimmer of what otherwise could be a pleasant or routine occasion.