Broiled BART Baby
PP didn’t really need to hear about this. She’d had a pretty okay swim. Split a lane most of the time. Shared with a couple of calm swimmers. Twiddle Dee chose the next lane over. Thank God. She wouldn't have to swim in the splash sandwich again.
So when she plopped into the hot tub and DL was there Wide Eyes behind foggy glasses, rapt at the African American Princess lounging naked (duh, but sometimes swimsuits are worn), her lovely brown skin smooth, her bald head matching, her story….
Well, this wasn’t so lovely.
Evidently some businessman had forgotten his baby in the back of his car in the BART parking lot all day while he was at work and well…the baby died from the “118 degree temperature in the car.”
So awful. PP didn’t want to hear this, but then, she has no control over the conversation at Utopia. Though sometimes she wished she did.
“I can’t imagine!” DL shakes her head.
“Me neither!” AAP nods in agreement.
“That’s one of the many reasons I don’t have children,” PP sighs, “I could see myself doing something like that. Though it’d be intentional.”
PP didn’t actually say that, but she thought it. Babies scare her. They are so small and vulnerable. She can’t imagine being responsible for one.
“And his wife. Imagine!” AAP continues, “Why! She can’t even talk to her husband about it.”
”No, I guess not,” DL murmured.
“She hasta be on SOME heavy duty medication now I bet!” AAP asserted, dangling a long leg seductively into the tub. PP was distracted by this of course. It was so much more tantalizing than Drugged Mom Losing Baby to Forgetful Dad. If that’s what it was.
“It was just a infant. Only 4 months old,” AAP continues, “they can be pretty quiet at that age I guess.”
“Yeah, maybe it was sleeping,” DL offered.
“Maybe. I just don’t get it. Imagine!” AAP exclaimed again, taking her long leg out of the tub in lazy relaxation.
PP didn’t find the topic of conversation too relaxing. This is why she stopped watching the local news at 11 p.m. It was all about such tragedies. Babies dying. Teenagers shot. Families burned.
It was just too much.
This is why she came to Utopia. To forget about the wrong world out there for a few hours. Yet the world always intrudes. No getting away from this.
Even if you try to get away, it’s impossible.
Which is why AAP began to talk now of some political topic. Obama this or Obama that. It was too much for PP. She had to eat. She had to sleep. She had to move. (To a ‘cottage’ in El Cerrito! Yah! No pool,--she’ll work on the Landlady about this-- but it was its own little sanctuary with no Clomping Grad Student to drive her crazy at all hours of the day and night. )
But it was all so exhausting. She could understand how the father left the baby in the car. Sure it was tragic, and on some level beyond imagination. But on the other hand, the world was overwhelming. He was probably late for work. On his blackberry emailing his boss while running to catch the BART, trying to hear last minute instructions for a meeting on his cell phone voice mail. Then writing a report during his commute before landing in San Francisco to start his hectic office rat job.
No wonder he forgot the baby!
Sighing, PP heaved herself out of the tub and headed for the showers. To rinse away the world’s woes?
Nah. Just the chlorine. But sometimes this was all it took to feel better again. At least until the next Tragic Hot Tub Story was told.