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Bus Story: Dressed for Success

July 23, 2016

It is an outfit that most would scoff at. Her shoes, the least startling of the lot, are a matte black with a chunky inch-high heel and woven straps that encase her foot in a cage of leather. Her dress is an embodiment of chaos. A riot of three different purples and, at least four greens, a slash of highlighter yellow, with a smattering of periwinkle and farm silo gray. All in a combo of paisley and plaid and sunburst patterns, and, scattered flower designs that look like they were conceived by a Venusian’s idea of Earth. Taking the effect to the next level of madness, she has accessorized with a massive, chunky gold link necklace, which reminds me of the chains worn by Jacob Marley. Like the proverbial cherry on top, she has silver and turquoise earrings and, amazingly, a sparkly rhinestone hair comb, in the serpentine shape of a gecko.

Before too long, an elderly gent, perhaps in his late 80’s, slowly finds his way to the seat beside her, with kindly assistance from the ridership at the front of the bus. He winces with each step, and, as he sits, a small cry of pain escapes his lips and he settles next to her. She turns to him, smiling gently and with such compassion, my throat catches. They begin to talk quietly and he visibly relaxes and the scrunched corners of his eyes and the tightening in his mouth become smoother and the visage of pain lifts from his overall demeanor. And the colors in her dress shift, slightly at first, and then, there is a deepening of the shades, and a new swirl of maroon appears.     Empathy often comes with a price to those who take on the pain of others. But fortunate are those in need who find themselves seated next to an empath who also has a dress run up by the House of Anodyne. 

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From → Bus Stories

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