Friday, December 17, 2010
Woke up early this morning. Put hollow points in the .38 snub nose and set out to pick up a hitchhiker and spread some goodwill.
Poor bastard had been standing on the I-10 eastbound on ramp for over a week now. At first, his cardboard sign had "HOUSTON" faintly scrawled in pen. A day or two later, he must have commandeered a marker of some sort, and soon it read "HOUSTON."
Driving by the middle aged man every morning nearly broke my heart. I wondered what was waiting for him 1,175 miles away. But mostly, I felt bad for him, because in reality, his chances of getting picked up were everso slim and the weather turned wetter by the moment.
We had the day off, so we drew up this elaborate plan to pick him up and buy him a bus ticket to Houston. I drove while R sat shotgun with a loaded gun in the glove box. A bit presumptuous, but you never know, right?
Turned out his name is Charlie and was trying to get back home to his grandkids. He told us about how he used to own a trucking company, then foreclosed on his house and ran out of funds. How he was able to get disability from the VA for a while. How he found a spigot and bucket to shower and keep clean. About maybe finding work with a rodeo in TX. How Christmas is about the good lord Jesus.
We got to the Greyhound station and bought him a one way ticket outta town. This is when it gets a million times better. We found out his full name is Charlie Murphy (hello, Dave Chappelle fans?!)! There was a bus that was just about to pull away, and we shook his rough hand, wished him good luck, and sent him on his way.
My Grinch heart grew several sizes bigger today. Relieved that we weren't stabbed nor did we have to shoot anybody, it made me very grateful for all the privileges that I've been afforded in life. I guess it cheapens it that I'm posting about it, but it certainly was a fun and interesting adventure.