Saturday, August 31, 2013

The hobo

My friend M and I went on a long walk toward the general direction of Cambridge, where I had a dinner date. The plan was that we'd walk until we ran out of time or steam, and then I'd hop on public transit to go the rest of the way.

That plan would have worked well, except when the time came and I prepared to catch a bus, I realized that my Metro card was low on funds and I had just a few coins on me. M scrounged around in her bag and came up with a dollar. We tried to remember if bus fare is $1.50 or $1.75, and managed to pool together a few more dimes in case it was the latter.

The bus arrived. I got on, attempted to scan my card, and got an error message that I did not have the $2 necessary. Oops.

"I have $1.75. Can I give you that?" I bargained with the driver.

"Just get on the bus," he replied good-naturedly, ignoring the dollar bill in my hand.

Dinner was lovely. My date insisted we get appetizers and a bottle of wine. Several glasses of rosé later, the check arrived along with the message that the credit card machine was out of order. The check totaled well over $100.

I decided I had to be honest. "I wish I could help pay," I told my date, "but I only have a dollar, and it's not even mine."

Austerity or no austerity, I definitely owe him a nice dinner.

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