Friday June 20 2014

Dirk (Phil Gray) Couch Surfing (June 20 2014)[i]

☼ ○ ▬

Just arrived in my home city at an airport. There's some confusion on where the baggage claim is. I follow a couple that looks like they know where they're going. The guy leads me into a secret tunnel system behind the walls that can magically lead you directly into your bedrooms. We locate mine after some time. I was starting to get claustrophobic in here. Later, I'm offered tea in these miniature cups from an old lady. When I go to take the first sip I discover a jellyfish pulsating inside the tea.

▬ ○ ☼

Waking up around 11 a.m.

Found the best organic imitation of Honey Bunches of Oats from Trader Joe's: Honey Crunch n' Oats. Having a bowl of that with Vanilla Almond Milk.

All day shift at China Wok.

Papaya. Banana.

In all the years I have worked here at this restaurant I have never once seen my bosses turn on the air condition until today. I guess it's that hot.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich. Baked Salt n Vinegar Chips. Honey Green Tea.

As I'm walking out the door to leave on a delivery, my head facedown scanning the ground as I usually do when I'm walking, I discover a $50 bill. Somebody must've dropped it unknowingly. I've been fortunate enough to find $5 bills and even $20 bills but never a 50. It takes me a couple minutes to wrap my head around what I just found. Wow. What a find. I feel bad for the person that lost it. I didn't earn this money. I just happened to be in the right place at the right time.

Milk Chocolate Bar.

A customer dropped their egg drop soup. I guess they took the name of the soup literally.

Egg DROP Soup (June 20 2014)

Mongolian Chicken with Mixed Vegetables and Rice.

Tips are substantial – five dollars here – four dollars there. And then my last order of the night at Fairfield Inn, a $20 tip. It doesn't matter how much extra time I have to work tonight I should have nothing to complain about.

Off work shortly after 11 o'clock. Phil Gray and his wife, Cheongah, are in town for a few days. We organized late-night dinner at Rick's Café with them, Elliott, Rocky, Ana, and myself. After some thinking earlier I decide to use my $50 bill on everyone's meal. The check only comes out to about $32 and some change. I figured leaving the fifty is a way to pay it forward, so to speak.

Back at the house. Phil and Cheongah are gonna spend the night. I pull out a box that's been stored in my closet for three or four years now. In it are some of Phil's CD's and a harmonica. He seems happy to be reunited with the box. Later, Kevin wobbles in the front door barely holding a case of mixed beer. Phil and Cheongah pretend to be foreign couch surfers, Olga and Dirk, when introduced to Kevin. Even though Kevin has met Phil in the past we assumed he wouldn't remember anyway. It works.

It's been a long, long day. I spend an hour finishing laundry, brewing tea, prepping some fruit, and general cleaning. After 3 a.m. I finally sit down at the computer to reflect and write.

Sleep shortly after 4 a.m.

[i] Images by me.

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