Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Three Wheels, Two Generations, One Hope!

In that intermediate, in-between time connecting sunset and dark, I came up behind them on a congested street in the Koukaki section of Athens. Even without the ostensibly mandatory red tail light, I could tell that it was a handmade, small truck-like vehicle, wired and spot-welded together. The two tiny, rear wheels sagged helplessly; I think I heard them cry out, beneath their far-too-heavy load.

Looking at the used auto batteries, bathroom porcelain and various shapes and sizes of metal piled haphazardly (and dangerously) into the tiny truck bed, I knew that the immigrant driving the thing was collecting recyclable junk from the public trash containers. I was neither surprised nor disappointed when, at the last minute, he pulled-in beside the next dumpster and began to poke around in it. A homesteader in Athens’ underground economy, who probably lives in one of the cardboard shanty-towns, he was planing to collect some needed cash from the assortment of cast-off items he had so perilously scavenged from the streets.

When I happily passed by this makeshift contraption, on to what I assumed to be my much more important business, I noticed that the front end of the thing was a motor scooter. The mini-truck bed had been affixed to the front wheel and handlebars of what my Albanian friends refer to as a motori. Compounding my surprise, I noticed that the driver was holding an infant on his lap. The baby couldn’t have been more than 12 months old! In my rear view mirror now, the happy-as-a-clam father was laughing and talking with the baby, while simultaneously steering, braking and preparing to dismount from the motor scooter-cum-pickup truck.

My first reaction was to let loose a generous dose of righteous indignation. How could any responsible father risk this tender infant by precariously placing him on a bony knee, while navigating the busy city streets in that contraption?! Then, my holier than thou resentment morphed into practical curiosity. How could the man shift gears, apply the hand brakes and steer that thing while cradling with his left forearm, elbow and palm, this squiggly, child?

And then, in a swift, mini synaptic passage, I became slightly more reflective. I began to imagine how this unique “take-your-child-to-work” scenario could have happened. What forces, social, familial, economic and political, contrived to create such a scene? What does a man feel when, through what is patently a multiplicity of causal factors, he is called upon to babysit a child while simultaneously doing the “trash run”? Where is Mama? Big sis? Big brother?

I spent most of my drive time thinking about the father’s attitude. How does a father arrive at the place where he can celebrate the child, even despite these less than ideal conditions? What messages does that father want to send to his most recent newborn? In a world that is likely to communicate to that child that s/he is a worthless inconvenience, that the struggle to survive would have been better off without him or her, how does a father laugh and embrace the precious infantile presence? What spiritual dexterity is required to authenticate humanity and to demonstrate a positive receptivity in close proximity to a trash dumpster?

Just wondering!


Anonymous said...

日本avdvd 小魔女免費影城 無碼avdvd無碼卡通情色 情色論壇甜心寶貝貼片區 Show-live視訊聊天室 情色免費A片 情色偷拍免費A片 一本道a片東京熱avdvd影片 色美眉台中援交aa片試看 aaa片試看 情人輔助品成人網站做愛自拍偷拍 免費試看av免費成人電影 dudusex免費aa片試看 臺灣情色網線上免費a長片 0204免費a片試看 a片免費試看 a片天堂台灣論壇成人a漫畫 免費視訊聊天ing 免費視訊美女 aaa影片下載城 卡通aa片免費看成人影片分享 視訊聊天評比 104免費成人情色文學小說 視訊聊天網視訊電話ggoo 視訊-愛情館 黑色豪門企業綜合娛樂論壇 8591論壇 avonline免費a片 xo7777 net 貓咪論壇 視訊做愛 0951影片下載avdvd mobile01論壇 免費視訊ggoo 成人論壇 視訊聊天-成人網 plus 論壇 交友網 bbs論壇 s383av730 香港論壇 月光論壇 一本道 a片 東京熱論壇區

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

一夜聊天室女同聊天聊天室二愛聊天室苗栗聊天66k聊天69性交6k 聊天至6k 聊天館 6k6k天室6k館777貼圖區77p2 影片網77P2P77p2p277p2p本土85ccst街影城2010問題小棧0401影音視訊非會員18h漫貼圖區18p2p帳密18p2p帳號18p2p帳號密碼18r 禁小說18r禁小說18r禁影片18tw台灣18tw情色文學18us線上影片18x免費女優火辣視訊薄紗主播網友自拍露點圖18成人成人韭南籽