Tuesday, November 6, 2012

P.O.V. Final - Part 2


Breathing in the crisp morning air, I pedalled lazily down the cracked road with one hand on my bike handle, and the other tucked in my pocket. Thin traces of fog still remained from dawn, wrapping themselves around the branches of the trees that loomed over from both sides of the street, and effectively blocking out the warmth of the sun. Taking my hand out, I pulled the folds of my jacket closer together, hoping to retain some of my body heat. Out of habit, I glanced at my digital watch. 8:48. Although a bit battered and shabby, it was still accurate; it told me that I was going to be late if I didn’t pick up the pace.

I sped up slightly, and traveled the last three hundred meters before rounding a corner. With the practice of one who had done the act thousands of times before, I easily swung off the bike after slowing down a bit, and guided it to one of the bike parking racks. After locking up one of the tires, I trotted over to the white rectangular building in front of me. I scanned the ground around it as I neared, and frowned at the sight of the scattered, brown leaves that had probably been blown off during the night. Before entering, I also took note of the grime on the windows, and mentally added it to my already growing list of chores for the day with a hint of exasperation.

As I passed by the front desk, the women stationed there nodded her head at my arrival. I greeted her back and headed for the closet room located next to the restrooms. After unlocking the door, I flipped the switch and watched as the bright, yellow light flickered for a brief moment before illuminating the small, dusty space. It was a plain room, with dull, yellow walls and three small wooden shelves attached to one side. Buckets and soaps of all sizes and types were spread along the wooden shelves, but I knew exactly where the ones I needed were. Without a second glance, I grabbed a small spray bottle of window washing soap, a bigger bottle of floor cleaning solution, a pale pink bucket, a rag, and a sponge. After I had adjusted them to fit in my arms, I moved to the end of the room and grabbed one of the mops resting against the wall. With everything I needed, I turned the lights off and exited the closet.

It was time to work.

After passing through several empty corridors, the sound of racing footsteps became apparent. While walking towards the courts, I could already see a few people playing while others stretched or warmed up on the side. As usual, thwacking noises and the occasional enthusiastic shout filled the room, while more marks were added to the floor from people who either hadn’t bothered, or didn’t own a pair of proper, non-marking shoes. I sighed inwardly, realizing that it would probably be up to me to wash it all off later.

Pushing the thought aside, I trudged over to the windows with my rag and spray soap in hand, and began the lengthy process of wiping off all the dust and dirt from the frames. While I scrubbed away, I noticed four, brightly dressed men playing on the court next to me. Behind them sat a young girl; probably the child of one of those men.

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