Lumps of love, transmitted by wire.
My headphones endorsed the errand by playing the perfect cycling songs as I pedaled downtown to the bank, Toots Thielemans’ “Bossa Nova” (player below) gliding right on into Johnny Cash’s “Hey Porter”. We had account data scribbled on an envelope in my pocket, five hundred of your dollars lurking around the ether somewhere reachable, and the perfect cure for a morning of mental mud washing the blech off my spirit.
A venomous dose of intimidation, and a steaming and stanking dollop of why-bother, were little piles of self doubt scat on my shoulders when I started, but they dried in the sunlight, weakened in the rushing air, and were scoured away by the wash of your generosity. I had money to pass on.
Byzantine bank protocols were navigated with an easy smile nourished by the kindness of the 13 of you who had donated to help rebuild Alvaro’s home, to find the best way to send every cent. No one takes cash anymore, but it turns out the best way is still to physically walk a money order down the block.
Colleagues from my Venezuela delegation and others, family, friends, and names I didn’t recognize arrived in my inbox over the last week, all stepping up to help put a roof back over a family. The bank teller may have been bored, but I wasn’t.
(The sense of wellbeing y’all gave me endured, kicking the doors off the hinges of the Oakland Parking Citations Assistance Center, and I was the happiest person ever to wait in line to pay an exorbitant parking ticket. Confused the bejeebus out of the clerk.)
Stub of the most satisfying money order in history tucked into my notebook, I grinned my way around the jetstreams of Oakland, the morning’s sick inefficacy forgotten, feeling the flow, reflecting the rhythm. And no one seemed to mind a good mood, especially the woman who honked and waved while her laughter escaped the cracked window when my stoplight dance included a little traffic direction. (John Legend’s “Stereo” just wanted me to tell the turn lane when it was their turn).
My feet were still drumming the earth when I arrived home just now, and what did I find? Two more donors, another lump of love to send Alvaro’s way. Oh well, I guess I’ll just have to go back and do it again tomorrow.
(If you’d like to add to that errand, the fundraising page is still alive and dancing: http://www.gofundme.com/AHomeForAlvaro)
(And since Tuesday’s blog pushed ahead of this one, I can update that to FIVE more donors, almost doubling our amount raised, bringing us within $50 of halfway. I’m going to need to charge my ipod for this…)