The Sycamore trees remind me of growing up in Modesto. A baby ladybug lands on my neck and I let it crawl around the keyboard of my MAC like it’s in a giant labyrinth. Strangers share the table and offer me some of their lunch. Moms with strollers walk by slowly without any agenda. A young lady walks past with a folder of houses channeling my wife 20 years ago. She sits next to her husband watching a child play, excited to show her information.

 

My table in the plaza is a magic place. Directly across from EDK, fifty feet from the little kid play area it is the place I stop when riding home from school or whenever I have a free moment during times like this summer.

 

I watch cute kids chasing birds, listen to a tour guide talk about the history of Sonoma, wonder about the lives of people walking by, see too many people on their phones and wonder what could be more important than appreciating this beauty.

 

Occasionally an acquaintance will stop by and we’ll chat about whatever seems important at the moment. Today it’s Margie who has been cleaning off the graphitized butts on the deer sculptures. Who sharpies a butthole on a public sculpture? And why?

 

My computer dies so I pull out my sketchpad and a pen. I love the dappled light coming through the gently flowing Sycamore leaves on the white surface of my sketchpad. Writing is good, pen to paper is good.

 

I check my list for the day, everything is done and it’s not even 1:00. Son is on 8thstreet learning the value of hard work at a bottling facility. Daughter is at Gunlach Bundshu learning the value of working in the wine industry. Wife is at the Index-Tribune writing small town stories. I should be driving to the county permit agency in Santa Rosa but my plans aren’t ready and I can’t really push my architect because he’s a friend and is working for whiskey.

 

I wonder who LE and DIX and JR are and why they carved their names in this table. Are they also deer butthole artists? The birds are loud when I focus on them. A guy snaps his fingers at his girlfriend who stops next to my table and stares at her phone. More cute kids in their “visiting Sonoma” outfits. A new Mustang drives down First Street West and I wonder why people buy new cars with the “extra loud muffler” option. Snapping guy retrieves his girlfriend who remained glued to her phone.

 

I see a group of teens that I kinda know but kinda don’t. I let them engage first, they do not, so I do not. Two babies are crying and I try to combine their cries with the sound of the birds. Waa waa, tweet tweet tweet, waa waa, tweet tweet tweet. I wonder why my brain can’t seem to process the crying and the tweeting together? It would make a good mashup.

 

A 20-something walks by with a walkie-talkie and skinny jeans that are rolled up way too short. I text my architect friend, “No worries, go 2 county 2morrow” knowing that plan check closes at 3 meaning that today’s window for a county visit is closed. Wife will be disappointed.

 

A woman complains about no changing tables in the women’s bathroom. White pants seem to be the summer look. A German couple walk by smiling, pointing out things as they pass. A little boy stands and looks up at the trees. A guy in a cowboy hat and boots walk out of Steiners and gets into his work truck. There is a whole diaper rash discussion behind me. Mom explained the babies’ redness to her inquisitive young son who told his friend, “Your sister has diaper rash”. A little Aquifor is the final solution.

 

Old Hispanic guy with a limp goes through the recycling bins looking for aluminum cans. Diaper rash conversation turns to TV shows. Somewhere a president is defending his immigration policy. Here it doesn’t matter because the flowing Sycamore leaves are much more important. At 1:40 I get hungry and decide to go. Architect friend texts, “sent you big ass email” meaning plans. I K him with a smiley face emoji and walk past the deer sculptures checking their backsides.

 

 

 

 

(Visited 7 times, 1 visits today)