Thursday, June 18, 2009
Tracks of Tears
With some apologies this morning to Smokey Robinson and the Miracles(Tracks of My Tears), I relate a story from my youth. This is a look just off Commercial Street heading towards one of the city's scrap metal facilities, with 'hobo jungle' off to the left. Whenever I'm around railroad tracks, it always harkens me back to an incident when I first started delivering the Press Herald in Portland. I think I was eleven and I was substituting for a high school boy DP, who was off with his family on a two week summer vacation. The first couple of days went a smoothly, as you might imagine in a small city at 5 AM, but on day three it happened. As I crossed the tracks on my bike at Morrill's Corner, I saw him. It was a German Shepard racing up the track bed, and he was making a b-line right for me. Long story, short version... Barking loudly and showing a lot of big teeth, he jumped, knocked me off my bike, papers strewn across the tracks, tears streaming down my face(the next time I cried in fear like that was Junior year in college taking that Statistics final... Ha!), I was in dire states. I'd probably still be there, in pieces, had the RR gate keeper not come running to my rescue. For the rest of the morning, I kept looking over my shoulder. These days, the German Shepard still isn't my favorite dog. Now, that's with no disrespect to my pal(?) Jasper. Do I really want a dog? Maybe part border collie? Malamute? Maybe, we're fated not to be together!