Observation Assignment

Photo by Victor Flores

Photo by Victor Flores

Cars accelerate down both sides of the busy street as people patiently wait for their bus. A woman is standing next to a trash can as a Latina woman with her son and her sister quietly sit on the bench, trying to stay warm.

Behind this family is the setting sun, easily visible in the mostly cloudless sky. There is hardly any breeze, but the temperature is very brisk, getting colder by the minute.

On the other side of the street is another bus stop, this one devoid of any human presence except for a pedestrian here and there.

A man in a navy blue sweatshirt, blue jeans, and brown boots walks by, talking on his phone about something nice somebody did for him. He crosses the street heading towards the other bus stop, which is in front of an area filled with coffee shops, Chinese restaurants, burger joints, gas stations, and motels, almost all of which are brand-name organizations.

The air is usually odorless but, every now and then, a whiff of Chinese food or automobile exhaust will envelope the area surrounding this bus stop.

Two homeless men walk past the person-less bus stop, not only altering the smell in the air but also changing the noise, which has been made up of nothing but car engines up to this point.

“I didn’t do anything wrong,” one of the men says to the other. “I wasn’t the one who stepped on her toe.”

Nearly 30 cigarette butts litter the ground. They are located under nearby trees, by the bus stop’s two garbage cans, in the street, and under benches. A gentle breeze picks up, barely strong enough to make tree branches sway but making the already cold air feel much colder.

A short Caucasian man with a black hoodie and a black University of Oregon beanie (a prominent yellow “O” on the front) talks with a tall Caucasian woman as they walk down the sidewalk heading south.

“He seems to have a lot a lot of issues…”, the man says, who’s final part of his sentence was interrupted by a gigantic, loud big rig making a left turn.

Back across the street at the other bus stop, the bus the Latino family has been waiting for is approaching their stop. A grey-haired man sees this bus and J-walks across the busy street, managing to avoid getting hit by a car or spilling his coffee. He gets to the stop just before the bus arrives.

The sun is completely out of sight now, the sky minutes away from being completely dark.

A man with a black hat, black jacket, and black backpack approaches the bus stop. He is holding a large cardboard box and a black trash bag, each carrying dozens of empty bottles.

The man searches through one of the bus stop’s garbage cans looking for more bottles. He doesn’t find any but he does stumble upon a purple belt that says “I love boobies!” in white lettering. The man chuckles and says to himself,”That’s cute.”

The man puts the belt back in the trash can and continues walking north up the street, looking for more bottles to collect as the sky gets darker and darker.

About Victor Flores

I'm living my dream, working as a sports reporter. Since August 8, 2014, I've been covering high school sports, Idaho Falls Chuckars baseball and Idaho State football for the Idaho Falls Post Register. In June 2014, I graduated from the University of Oregon with a Bachelor or Arts in journalism. Before being hired by the Post Register, I was the 2014 summer editor-in-chief of the UO's student newspaper, the Daily Emerald. Prior to that, I was an associate sports editor at the Emerald. I've also worked for the UO radio station, 88.1 KWVA (sports and news reporter), FishDuck.com (sports writer) and Bleacher Report (contributing writer). I've interned at Comcast SportsNet Bay Area, Cumulus Radio and Medienhaus Wien (in Vienna, Austria). Follow me on Twitter @VictorFlores_IF and on Instagram @vflores2014.
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