Noises in the Background

As far as ambient levels of noise Vancouver can be quiet. On this day however there is a higher level of amplified music in the air. It may be due to the Pride parade that will snake it’s way through the city. There are more people out in the street making their way down to the beach where the parade will terminate. The parade will start when I start my shift at eleven. Part of me is glad to be avoiding all of this and part of me wants to see what all the fuss is about. 


There are many that are avoiding all of this by doing something else. Since I live and work here in the West End I can not. I can hear where it will begin but the time is short to see that place. Instead I seek out the comfort of a park side seat where the people walk by with their pets holding their coffee cups and wearing their shades. It gives everyone a cool look as we stare into each other’s lenses trying to see those micro expressions change in acknowledgement of each other’s existence. 

This place is turning into a giant fancy dress party. It is a reason to celebrate for many and the enthusiasm is contagious infecting the whole city. I’ll be at work doing the job that is necessary as well. I’m just in holiday mode still and I don’t want it to end. 

The earlier paragraphs were written as I was passing time before getting to work. I have an estimated hour and a half of free time that would have spent traveling back and forth from work. Starting in the late morning or early afternoon has some benefit but also its drawbacks. One benefit is having free time in the morning to perform such activities like writing. 

It was a long shift at work.  It was nice to get out and get some air and see the festive sights happening along Davie St. We are performing routine but sometimes long studies. The types that sometimes take a long time but can be hard to fit in otherwise. Coffee was my friend. Having a thermally insulated mug actually decreases my coffee consumption but prolongs my enjoyment of a cuppa. Repetition breeds confidence and efficiency as well as the opportunity to focus on the finer details of the study. It can also be quite labourous to keep the lids of the eyes opened. There was a time there when this was the case. 

As the day was finally drawing to a close I got a text from an old friend. He needed some help. He needed someone to work. I stared at the text for a while and those old memories came rushing in. He was asking me to come out of retirement and moonlight for a night. 

The last case was taking a while and I’m on call. Having finished and initially telling him no I capitulated and got home to change before heading out. The cab ride down Davie was just as crazy as a walk up this street. The bars and clubs had lines snaking down the sidewalk. There were drunk revellers all over the place. I was heading down to Gastown to revive my old role as a doorman. It was only going to be for a couple of hours. I didn’t know where they were going to place me or what kind of crazy crowd populated the space. 

When I got there I was greeted with open arms and a smile. “Thanks for helping us out.” They were short staffed with a big crowd inside. The crowd seemed to be enjoying their time. There was some DJ from Australia playing there whipping the crowd into a frenzy. The transformed space of my old haunt once again hosted another night of dancing and partying delight. After introducing myself to the door girls I was put on the entrance to the door heading down the corridor to the space. I had to pat down everyone that was heading back inside.  

In between rushes of people heading inside the girls asked me where I came from and how they found me. I told them that I was walking by down the street and that they asked me upstairs if I wanted to work and I said yes. This story lasted for a while until the actual truth came out. This wasn’t long. They also told the boss that they wanted me to be there every night. I told them that I am gentle yet firm when dealing with the public to at once be authoritarian and non-confrontational. All those years dealing with the public in this way, from this perspective seem to be ingrained in my being. How many nights have been spent this way? I was asked why I stopped and I replied that it was because it stopped being fun and there were too many other things that I had to do so there was no time for it anymore. I was doing way too much then. 

It was worth my time coming out and helping out. It was fun to do this again. It broke up the monotony of the daily shifts that I’m past the halfway point of finishing. It’s still work but a different kind of job. Well the money is needed as my mind turns toward creating a better future. I got to sleep in a little bit and the quiet morning in the shade on a Bank Holiday Monday is nice before it all starts again later on today. 

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