Their Cold Hands

cold baby-1

If meteorologists ever conducted a study on the climate surrounding the enormous bazaar near our house, I wouldn’t be surprised if they found that it adversely affects surrounding weather conditions. During the winter, somehow as soon as you step foot inside, the temperature drops by at least double digits. Must have something to do with all the concrete and shipping containers. They hoard cold like old Scrooge hoards money. You’d think the body heat of so many people would compensate. At least a little. It doesn’t. You wish you would have worn another pair of socks.

It’s there that thousands of people spend their days, standing, sitting, selling. It doesn’t matter what the thermometer says. They chat with the seller in the next stall. They buy hot tea out of a thermos from the tea lady’s cart. They don’t forget an extra pair of socks. Some of the fruit and vegetable sellers build wooden frames around their tables and enclose themselves in what look like fish tanks made out of thick plastic wrap. Anything to hang onto a degree or two. And day after day after day, they eke out a living, one notebook, nail, or pair of nylons at a time. I’m done after 30 minutes. They’re not done after eight hours. And they’ll be back tomorrow and the next day.

May God establish the work of their cold hands.

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