I was standing by the kitchen window, talking on the phone and looking into the dark, when I heard a child's cry. This neighborhood is thick with little kids, none of whom seem to play on the sidewalks. I'm always worrying as I hear their echoing yells and screams from a distance, knowing that they're most likely alright. Some days I stay indoors, and shut window to keep out the sound -- I know they're only playing, or fussing over the injustices that plague their small minds, but some times the worrying is too distracting for me.
So I opened the front door on this occasion, anyway, wondering what child was outdoors at 10 o'clock at night. The paperboy's convertible rattled past, and down the street I could hear Margarita's mother chewing her out at the front steps. Out late on a weeknight evidently. Margarita walked past the house the other day, and at 15 or 16 she is nothing short of sin in shoes -- she's gorgeous, in an expertly disheveled and thoroughly Latina sort of way, and I imagine she has her pick of them if she likes. The child's voice would probably have been one of Margarita's nieces -- her sister lives at home with three children under the age of 5, and I suppose Margarita's mother lives in fear of another baby. Hopefully the younger sister is smarter given observation at close hand, and she won't tie herself down. But it's no fun to sit on your steps on a summer night, when you have to hear every word of someone's mother bitching up and down the block. So in I went.
Grant's done, after three days of juggling childcare and paperwork. Thank goodness. I hope we get it. It's just a small grant, for improvements at the food shelf. But it took some time to prepare. I'm glad to be done with it. The next one, due in December, will be much more involved and much larger in scope and potential.