Today I met Bruno while walking home from a local cafe. We crossed paths at the hardware store and, I can’t lie, I hoped that we wouldn’t converge. But we did. He had a homeless look to him, ruddy face and all, and was carrying a giant purple jacket while wearing a similar one unzipped. We walked for about 15-minutes together and I feel sort of bummed that I initially pigeon-holed him. Sometimes I forget how wonderful it is to meet all sorts of people, even if they seem a little wacky at first.
“Afternoon,” I said.
“Afternoon to you! How are you?”
“Just fine, thanks. You?”
“Well, you know, just doing what I can and hoping for the best. But not hoping, living!”
“Well right on then.”
“Yeah, my house burned down this morning and well, you know, I’m not too sure how it happened, but I may have had something to do with it. Not sure though.”
“Yeah well, you know, things can get kind of crazy sometimes and I’m always up to something. This or that, some kind of out-of-control witches’ brew, I suppose. I’m an astrologer and believe we are moving out of this patriarchal age and into something better for everyone. It’s a shame that people go all day without connecting with someone else. We don’t even realize the opportunity we have right in front of us. We’re all connected, you know. Makes me sad.”
“Wait a minute, your house burned down today?”
“Yeah, just part of it. I got some friends over there right now to see how bad the damage is.”
“Damn. That sucks.”
“Yeah, but I know all about fire. I already burned once back in 1631. And you might say that based on the amount of medicinal herbs I have growing in my yard these day I’m a candidate for the Inquisition. Again.”
“Did that happen in a past life.”
“Who knows, man? There was a fellow with my namesake, Bruno Righetti, who a few hundred years back discussed planetary travel to the wrong people and was charged with devil worship. But there are far bigger problems in the world than mine. Take the Catholic church, for example. I went to a Catholic school for twelve years and feel like all they did was try and tie me off from knowledge. Real knowledge. Even the word Catholic no longer applies – did you know it means universally accepted?”
“Didn’t know that.”
“Yeah, even the Dalai Lama’s sort of blowing it, doing what he can to uphold the Buddhist philosophy and all, sure, but continuing to persist patriarchy. Not a woman near him. Never. It’s a shame, really.”
“Even the liberals these days are unable to do much of anything. Our society won’t let them. It’s not so obvious, though. It’s not like that Pope from Godfather III, the movie, that was in power for three weeks or something then abducted and hid away in the catacombs under the Vatican. They didn’t kill him, but they sure shut him up. It’s not like that.”
“No, I’d say not.”
“But still, it sure is hard to get stuff done these days, I mean, for the good of everyone anyhow.”
“Ain’t that the truth.”
“Ok then, I’m off to see about my house. Been a pleasure.”
“Hey, nice chatting. Good luck.”
“Thanks – I have lot’s of luck.”
This isn’t Bruno, but the photo reminded me of him, minus the big purple jacket.