While I was waiting for the bus today at my place of employment one of the folks who works with me approached the stop too. While I am technically her boss in terms of the relationship that our mutual institution applies to us, I am generally uncomfortable with such designations as I find them old-fashioned and rather counterproductive to the goals and purpose of the work we are doing. I truly believe in shared governance, you see, and while I have a role of leadership in said organization, I prefer to allow input and feedback from those who work in that organization and who do the work that takes place there. Yes, of course, I have to make managerial decisions, but I feel that the people who do the work should share in the governance of the place.
She and I talked about her French class. She commented that she found French a very difficult language to speak, and noted that was probably why the French drank so much coffee. We both laughed at that. This person has quite the sense of humor, not muddled by a disability that would surely knock me flat.
We chatted some more, this time about work matters, as the bus we were both taking approached. I boarded first with the able-bodied, as she had to request the driver to lower the lift. We lost track of each other at this point, as I moved to the back of the bus as is my usual wont, and she scrambled to a seat in front.
And I did feel badly about not sitting with her, but stayed in the back and thought.
She got off in a most unexpected place--by the river that bisects the Salt Lake valley, near a path that follows the river bank. While there is a sidewalk by the roadside there and a somewhat steep incline to a wild-looking area where reeds and wild plants take over. After leaving the bus, she moved up the hill, towards the wild area. People in the bus were watching her, and I was struck with sudden emotion--not of pity or even compassion, but of pride of knowing such a powerful person who has faced so much struggle in her life, but strives and strives for more.
As the bus pulled away, I jotted the following on my notepad:
Against the cold wind
You climb against your body
The wind shakes the reeds