I ride the bus to work. And recently, on an otherwise uneventful morning, I was on the bus when a jovial Hispanic man sat next to me all the way at the back of the bus.
Then, he began to take his shirt off.
I was about to get nervous. He looked at me with a sheepish smile, and with in an apologetic voice and in broken English, explained that he needed to change shirts for his next job, and he apologized for the inconvenience.
As he explained it – his first job from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. was cleaning windows at a hotel near Santa Monica’s tourist hot-spot. Then, he took the bus to his next job making sandwiches at a Subway shop from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. After that he went to his final job at a Taco Bell where he worked until I think 7 p.m. or so. I might have the times slightly off.
The man was smiling as he recounted his daily routine. And I couldn’t help but admire his ability to smile despite such a difficult work life.