Our apartment building is undergoing extreme renovation and has been since the moment we moved it. We were promised it would be done by mid November, but having been home owners we knew that contractors had as much ability to predict future as those people with the 'Jesus is Coming Tomorrow' signs. Recently it's gotten seriously difficult to get out of the building. The whole of the circular drive has been blocked off except for a wee pathway down the long side of the driveway. I can't do this without assistance.
We left to get to work early so Joe asked if I would mind parking on the sidewalk and wait for him to pull right up. I was totally cool with that. We parked at the end of the driveway on a small patch of city sidewalk. Soon after Joe left a car pulled in and parked right in front of me. I couldn't see the drivers face because he had a Jamacian flag in the passenger window. When he got out he was extremely tall and had a big touque with Jamacian coulours knitted in stripes. He openned the trunk of his car and began to sing as he changed his driving shoes for his work shoes. He glanced at me out of the corner of his eye and said, "You're lucky, man, you get a floor show this morning." I laughed and agreed that I was indeed fortunate.
We started to talk and I find out that he's working on taking the bricks off the top part of the building. I learned that his last job was on the CN tower and that he worked at heights up to 1300 feet. Then he confided in me that he'd had the job for 10 years but has never grown used to heights. All the while we talked, during silences he went back to singing his song.
At one point a bunch of people came out in the building and cast grim glances at both him and me as they went off to their very, very, very important lives. "It must be nice to sit in a wheelchair," he said, "It gives you the chance to talk to strangers." I nodded and admitted that my life was more like theirs a bare three years ago.
"What's it like working up so near to heaven," I asked with a smile in my voice, I liked this guy.
"No, no, no, man," he said, "My heaven is down here. God don't want us to wait for heaven, He wants us to make it down here. That's why I sing in the morning."
Joe pulled the car up, so I said goodbye to the construction worker and he wished me a good day.
"Make heaven," he said.
"Oddly," I said, "That's kind of how I see my job."
"Then you are a lucky man," he said grinning.