I bang on the door.
“Yeah, wait,” comes the voice.
I step back.
No windows, more a shed than an apartment.
I’ve read too many pistol-shot stories, but I’m still too close.
Two minutes pass in the hazy sun, wilted trees and lawn.
He finally looks around the door, white T-shirt over his belly, grey stubble on a lined face.
“No, the ‘white girl’, right?”
“No, not here.”
He slams the door.
I leave, and walk two blocks.
C is on a corner.
She’s on her cellphone.
“What happened at your place?”
“Oh, the guy kept wanting me to buy him beer. I left, have a new place.”
“Working the corners again?”
“Yeah, need to see the kids for the holidays. Two weeks in advance for a ticket gets it cheaper.”
“No problem going to the North at the checkpoint?”
“No, none. I’m a white girl. I go right on through.”
Eugene “Gene” Novogrodsky, late November 2012
Author: Gene Novogrodsky
Eugene “Gene” Novogrodsky, a Brownsville resident for nearly three decades, writes North American border slices, from eastern Canada to central Mexico, and in between. He is one of the founders of the Narciso Martinez Cultural Arts Center Writers Forum in San Benito. He sometimes participates with the informal Resaca Writers Group in Brownsville. He prefers, however, to read to two or three attentive listeners – when asked!