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Idiot or devotee? No decision there …

19F might seem to deter most walkers; what could possibly be wrong with a hand-clutching extra cup of hot coffee while you wait for the sun to rise and the frostiness to subside?

But then there’s yours truly. Someone has to be an idiot. Of course, one only wonders ‘Why didn’t I put on long underwear?‘ when you’re at a point-of-no-return 300 – 400 yards from the house.

Here's this morning's grotesque haul - about 10 lbs. of someone else's junk.

Here’s this morning’s grotesque haul – about 10 lbs. of someone else’s junk.

This was kind of a make-up morning. Earlier in the week there were chunks of cardboard and pages from a ripped apart magazine still soggy from recent rains and left to lie until they dried out. Knowing there would be this added cargo, a second Harris Teeter bag was stowed in my left pants pocket.

There were the odd lots along the way including an oversized green plastic bag wrapped around a Christmas tree discarded along the curb on Colony Road; the bag would serve no useful purpose in a landfill.

Here's what two bags look like in all their glory. Not eve my anger about this morning's haul were enough to keep me warm.

Here’s what two bags look like in all their glory. Not even my anger about the results of this morning’s treasure hunt were enough to keep me warm. One of these days, I’ll have a contest for you to spot all the items by brand name; Bud Light, Coors Light, McDonalds, Burger King, Dasani, Coca Cola, Vitamin Water, to name just a few.

My treasured cup of coffee went cold quicker than I preferred. It was totally consumed before I reached the halfway mark in the three mile jaunt. I’ve gotta get a larger go-cup with better insulation for these colder mornings. It forced my usual amble to become something just short of a slow trot. The stop-and-go action to pick up what would become two bags stuffed with debris doesn’t do much to keep a guy warm.

But now I’m done. A warm cup of coffee sits just to my right as I type this post. The fireplace is on full-tilt and there are two stuffed-to-the-gills bags of junk removed from the streets. That warms me up just fine.

About Dave Bradley (264 Articles)
I was a writer by trade so one would think letters would come easily for me. It is so now, but wasn't always that way. Indeed, the first letter was written the Monday after Ellen started her freshman year in college. For years I've wondered - with no good answers - why I swiveled my office chair toward my computer screen to fire up a word processing document for that first letter. I just don't know. I just did. Perhaps it was the angst of separation or wanting to say things that had gone unsaid at that moment when we parted ways in front of her college dormitory. What was a one-off became habitual. When her brother Reid enrolled in the same college, his name was added to the salutation line. They were kids then and are adults now. No matter. The letter writing habit remains so today. I live in Brevard, North Carolina. I'm well away from where they live and don't see them nearly as often as I'd like. That's why letters, at least to me, fill the void of distance. The pages give me something to say and the space to say it. There is no assurance they read the letters; indeed, I have never asked if they do so. With the pace of their busy lives who could blame them for letting a letter sit unopened? Over time, it has dawned on me that the letters are both communicative - and cathartic. By nature, letters are about the writer; the writer can only write about their situation. Perhaps that is as it should be. It's all about the here and now from one person's perspective.

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