The Other Side

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Sanjay was clean-cut and dressed in an American 80’s style. He looked like a dark skinned version of the guy in Three’s Company, but with a mustache. A baby blue athletic shirt with cutoff sleeves was tucked tightly into his jeans. I sat with Sanjay under the canopy, looking out over his things for sale at passing tourists.

Sanjay asked me what my dreams were. I was caught off guard, not expecting such depth to a conversation with limited English. It took me some time to communicate all the big and exciting things I want out of life. When finished, I asked him the same.

He faced his palms to the sky and waved his hands over the dusty trinkets in his shop.

“This” he said.

“What do you mean?” I asked. “This is what you want, nothing more?”


“Yes, this is my life. I am happy. I have a happy life.”

His honestly and simplicity humbled me.

Sanjay continued to work and I saw hawking from his point of view. Some tourists stopped, some responded and kept walking, some smiled, but most ignored him completely. One after another, people would pass, giving no acknowledgment to what he had to say or sell. I knew I’d worn all their shoes and I knew how they felt, but for once my sympathy was under the canopy.

One Thought on “The Other Side”

  1. estelle Says:

    Give us more! please

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