It’s a gorgeous sunny day, and I’m pedalling up the Hornby bike lane. I’m on my way to get blood work done, but I’m feeling quite happy because the sky is a fantastic shade of blue, my knees don’t hurt, and the streets are teeming with people for me to gawk at. I’ve stopped at the light at Georgia/Hornby intersection, and a rangy white guy who looks to have seen better days makes eye contact as he crosses the street. A mile-wide smile spreads across his face as he draws nearer.
“Happy Black History Month!” he calls out loudly, pausing on the median to have a chat with me. Some pedestrians smirk at his exuberant greeting, some give us the side-eye, but mostly we’re ignored. I smile and thank him, but I tell him he’s a day early.
“Well, shit”, he chuckles, “I missed Martin Luther King Day completely, so I’m just happy I remembered at all!” We share a laugh and I raise my fist for a fist bump, which he heartily returns. The bike signal turns green, and I ride away, happier for this small moment of shared humanity.