I have about a 15 minute walk from the bus stop to my library (I realized at some point that this was much less annoying than the 25-minute wait I always got stuck with if I took the bus that stops right in front of my library). My library's neighborhood isnt exactly a high-pedestrian area. But today, I noticed a woman walking in front of me in pink pajama pants and a brown hoodie (not unusual. The number of people who come into my library in their pajamas is slightly humorous). I took my eyes off her to pay attention to the cars as I crossed a busy boulevard, and when I was almost across the street I realized that she'd sat down on the corner and was leaning against the light pole. At which point I became a little concerned. I mean, she's less than 100 yards from the library, which is free and warm. Half a block away there's a bus stop she could sit at. On the other side of the library parking lot, there's a grass lawn. This isn't a corner I've ever seen anyone panhandling at--the light doesn't change very often so the traffic doesn't stop often enough. So I was worried she'd fallen over, instead of sat down.
"Are you okay?" I asked.
"Oh yeah, I'm fine," she said. "I just got let out of jail."
This was all the explanation she offered. Didn't ask me for food or money. Didn't seem much interested in talking. I don't know if she was just enjoying the fresh air? If she was expecting me to offer her money or food or a ride? I told her the library was open until 5:00 if she got cold. And left her there. Hopefully she gets everything worked out.
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