On the way


I was heading to Hayden’s Swim Meet. I passed a line of people waiting patiently for sandwiches to be given out from a makeshift cardboard stand. There were about a dozen people warming their hands in their pockets. They could’ve been in a photo from the Depression, but, this is 2010, a cold December afternoon.

The church looked lit from within. I asked the (Latina?) woman who seemed to be in charge, “Can I go in?”

“Sure,” she said. She walked up the steps and opened the door for me. I am always grateful when someone opens the church door for me, especially this woman who seemed to have more important things to do — distribute sandwiches.

I sat in the church. I just sat. I looked up at the blue walls. I like blue walls. That’s all.

Then I heard clicking behind me. Ah, I thought, the proverbial church mouse. I looked around.

It was a woman at a computer keyboard behind a glass wall. The church office was sectioned-off in the back of the sanctuary.

As I walked out, she and I smiled at each other. I kind of wondered what was an office doing in a church. Maybe she wondered what I was doing, staring at the walls. Then I wondered if it would be impolite to take a picture of the people standing in the sandwich line. But I didn’t have to decide. The line had disappeared. All of the sandwiches must’ve been distributed.

I went to the Swim Meet.

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