One day last week a friend and I met for a bike ride.
I see lots of things on bike rides. I’ve seen a man in his underwear. I’ve seen bikers who have wiped out and needed to go the hospital (I’m referring to other bikers, not me). I’ve seen bikers crying while they ride. I’ve seen bikers smoking while they ride. I’ve seen beater bikes. I’ve seen bikes that cost half a year’s salary. I’ve seen drunk men standing on the trail creating a running creek across the path with their urine that I had no intention of riding through. I’ve seen way too many people making out, but hey, share the love I guess. I’ve seen homes along the rides that I have no idea how many staff it takes to keep it clean. And I’ve seen the homeless sitting along the way, just waiting out their day. I’ve seen, and heard, laughing, singing, fighting, and moaning from other bikers (any of those sounds could have been me….).
Saturday we hit the trail with no expectations other than a good ride on a hot day.
On the way towards downtown Big City I look to my right and there are two grown men crouching in the woods. I’m looking down at them. They’re looking up at me. You couldn’t see them until you were right there.
What could I do?
I said “Hi”.
They both said “hi” as I kept pedaling. Well wasn’t that odd. I figured them to be homeless. But there was just something a little odd about it. Homeless and finding a place to sit, I get that. It gave me that uncomfortable feeling and realization of life for everyone isn’t easy. I’ve seen lots of kids along the trails in the woods, exploring, smoking, just talking, and it doesn’t really surprise me. It feels like a kid kind of thing to do. I don’t know. I let it fall from my thoughts as we rode and talked.
We passed these very possibly and likely homeless men. We headed in to The Suburbs of the Big City. We rode our bikes up and down a few of the streets. Talk about polar opposite moments. Homeless guys literally in the bushes. To this….extravagance. I felt wealthier just riding my bike there.
Eventually we turn around to head back. As we approach the corner from the opposite side I see one of the men I had seen in the bushes standing on the corner across the street. He was just standing there. Another man was further away, walking towards the guy I had seen squatting in the bushes. Just as the walking man got to the Bush Squatting Guy my friend starts yelling “Colleen…..Colleen”. I turn to look at her. Her eyes are telling me something. I slow down and she pulls up next to me. “Did you see that? Did you see that? They just did a drug deal right there!”
I told her no! I didn’t see it because she was yelling at me and I was turning around to look at her. She assumed they were either stoned or stupid to be doing the drug deal right there where they had. I had to agree. I hate to call people names, but if you’re dealing drugs you kind of ask for it. It was a very busy corner slash intersection.
I think the drug dealers should have a little bit more common sense and etiquette in their dealing.
- If you hide in the bushes for whatever other reason, why not do the drug deal in the bushes so we don’t have to see it?
- If you have to deal the drugs aren’t you suppose to do it at night and not at high noon?
- If you have to deal the drugs aren’t you really bad at it if two fairly naïve bumpkins can watch the whole thing from their bike ride?
- If you have to deal the drugs….
Yeah, there’s nothing really funny about this.
I pretty much get that within your culture there is no etiquette. And I guess I’m trying to find a way to lighten up the fact that I can get on my bike and ride someplace with my friends, or my children, or even alone and come across your world.
I really don’t want to lighten it up. I want it to go away. And I don’t mean just go away where I don’t have to see it. I want it to go away. End. Stop.
I’ve seen too many lives and worlds destroyed by what you do. My bike ride wasn’t ruined by what you do. But so many more important things are. Including your life.
You know what one of the saddest things is about this post? It is probably the most ‘searched’ title I have. Not because their looking for my post. But so many people are typing into a search engine: ‘drug dealer etiquette’. Like there is such a thing.