I’m standing outside in front of a bus stop. It’s cold, and there’s a tree in front of me, sprawling more branches than I can count without blinking. From one of the branches, a pair of children’s shoes is held hostage by its own shoelaces, swaying, slowly, in the breeze.
It’s very cold, and I blink away tears from the wind. I imagine a kid standing in this exact spot, looking at something he so very dearly needs, but that lies just out of reach.
I see a man walk up to the tree, and without hesitation jump and begin to climb. He’s fucking crazy, but how can I not smile. When he rescues the shoes, he jumps down and sets them on the ground, scarcely an inch from where they’d hung in the tree.
He looks at me and says “You could’ve done that.” And I blink, and it’s cold again. He’s gone.
I’m so preoccupied with this mystery samaritan that I almost miss my stop – distracted by the possibility that I won’t see him again, ever; and I decide to sleep.
I walk through the living room, through the bathroom and towards my bedroom – turn around, and double-take the mirror.
I knew he looked familiar.