Homeward Bound

The poetess Abi, at the Greyhound Station smoking a cig… looking pensive and a little weary. She inhales her cig to satiate her craving for nicotine and to enjoy the calming effect it has.

Portland Greyhound Terminal:

I met her at the Greyhound station at 6th and Hoyt. It’s next to the Amtrak station which was a lot nicer inside. I got to the station before her so I spent an hour walking round.

I got accosted a few times from people wanting change. It’s not uncommon to get accosted 2 or 3 dozen times a day here in Portland. The homeless near the Greyhound Station seam to be more aggressive. If you ignore them, they keep calling out to you until you acknowledge their presence. One guy yelled “hey, do you have spare change!” about 6 times. Finally I turned around and shook my head and he stopped following me. The girl across the street was about to cross over to my side but decided not to.

This is the Steel Bridge. I took it from behind the Greyhound station.

“I got a ticket!” The PDX portion of her journey is finally ending. I wish she could have stayed longer. Melancholy fills the air today. Maybe our paths will cross again someday.

As promised, I gave Abigail vol 1 of the Bakuman manga series. It’s her first manga. I hope she likes it. I originally bought it for L’s birthday but it’s been extremely difficult to get a hold of her. There are some old fashioned Japanese ideas about women in volume 1. I found these ideas, in a comic printed in 2011, a little funny.

She said the ticket agent was different than the one on Thursday. The ticket agent today didn’t scream at her.

Last night as I was walking away from Powell’s bookstore, a man coming from the opposite direction leaned towards me as we passed each other in the intersection and said in a loud voice and crazy man stare, “what the fuck do you think you’re doing?”. Crazy people! There was also something in the news a week ago where a bus driver screamed at a woman who’s baby was crying.

This reminds me of a funny San Francisco story…, I was in SF to visit my parents but they were traveling in Europe. I called them a week before I planned my trip to see them and my mom told me they were not going to be in town. I took bart from SFO to downtown SF where I caught the surface bus home. A baseball game had ended so there were a lot of dodger and giants fans all over the place. All the busses were packed. The lady bus driver kept screaming, “get behind the line. I’m not driving until you get behind the line!” A passenger yelled back, “…do your job and drive the bus.” Amongst giggles and laughter from passengers and driver, the bus rolled on. I miss San Francisco!

This picture above was taken inside the Greyhound station. Next to Abi is the infamous shopping cart I wrote about in an earlier blog entry. This shopping cart looks different than the one in the first picture I took back in early september. Abi had bought a black duffle bag (see inside cart) to put all her stuff in as recommended by the rude ticket agent thursday night. Table and chair are strapped outside the cart. Now her underwear and personal belongings are safe! LOL

Excerpt of email from Hannah: “…I could easily picture the both of you walking into a restaurant and her checking her cart at the coat closet with her typewriter strapped to the top.” Hannah wrote this before I uploaded all the pictures.

I should clarify that when Abi is working, her cart is not filled to the top with all of her belongings like in the picture below. She’s not homeless. The cart is the easiest way for her to transport table, chair, typewriter and paper on public transportation.

I’m not sure how many different locations she picked to work at. She told me she tried working in NW Portland on Alberta street but she said there was too much noise and it was hard to concentrate.

This pic was taken outside the station. Smoking is not allowed indoors. Look at those pink socks!

I think the cart should be the topic of one of her poems. She agreed to continue sending poems. Along with pictures and narrative. The poems will be about her journey home. I’m looking forward to reading them and posting them.

I’m calling the next picture Mango Madness because the color of her shirt matches the color of the Snapple she’s drinking which is called…yes, you guessed it…mango madness.

I don’t know why I bought the Snapple. I was at the Amtrak station next door killing time and I picked up a Snapple and coffee. There was no way I could finish both coffee and Snapple before she got to the station, so I offered the Snapple to her.