I came across this fun website where there is a weekly writing challenge posted. I like a challenge and this week it was all about imagining walking in someone else’s shoes, so here I go:
These boots were made for walking…
I could feel a tiny bulge under the cardboard. I had been trying to ignore it for at least an hour. Maybe two. Who was to know how long I had been lying here on the pavement. I had no way of knowing. Time always felt like it stood still.
Perhaps it was a small stone. It was so insignificant. But I could think of nothing else. Here I was, trying to get a bit of sleep in a relatively crowded area, feeling safer than last night.
I was lucky to find this spot. My usual resting place had been taken over by another lady. She didn’t look like she would survive the night, so I let her take my precious boxes. They kept out the night chill from the ground. I wanted to give her my only blanket but it had been soaked by the rain. I had woken to drips falling onto my forehead. It didn’t take long for me to jump up, but it was too late for the blanket.
I twisted my body, trying to push away the thought of a little piece of rock pushing its way into my lower back. I closed my eyes again and curled myself into a ball, hoping none of the footsteps would end up falling over my body. Finally starting to drift off.
Tap-tap-tap-tap went the high-heeled shoes. I could hear them coming closer. They were so calming. The regular tapping made me relax. I could feel myself slipping slowly, slowly…
And then they stopped. Silence. I opened one eye a tiny slit. And realised with a start that a freckled lady was staring right at me. Right into my eyes. Her brown eyes looking from one of my eyes to the other. She had the longest eyelashes I had ever seen. Her pink stained lips began to part. I smelt her minty breath sweep over my face. I breathed it in. I breathed all of her in.
She brushed her fringe out of her eyes and said ‘Hi’. Then she placed something warm and sweet smelling on the cardboard in front of my face, stood up straight and walked off.
Tap-tap-tap-tap until her footsteps faded. It was quiet again. I could wait no longer and sat up, all thoughts of sleeping gone, fingers frantically tearing at the wrapper. It opened easily. It had obviously been opened before. My mouth began to salivate. My stomach rumbled desperately.
A half-eaten burger with barbecue sauce.
It smelt so sweet. I licked at the sauce hungrily, careful not to let my tongue stray too close to where she had sunk her teeth into the meat. After all, who knows where she had been? The last thing I needed was germs. After two or three licks I re-wrapped the burger with care. I placed it on top of my feet, hoping the warmth would sink into my toes and up through the rest of my body.
I could still taste the sweet sauce on my lips. It wasn’t easy being a vegetarian and homeless.
As I lay back down, once again I felt the stone digging into me. Pushing and pushing. I turned to lie on my side and hoped for sleep to come. I licked my lips once more and listened for the tap-tap-tap-tap…