Thursday, April 11, 2024

A Spoonful of Singing

It was a bright spring morning, still a little crisp, but with the promise of warmth.  As the morning light spilled into my little neighborhood, I heard the sound of singing.  

It wasn't, truth be told, the most tuneful noise.  It rode in with the arrival of a garbage truck, and the vocalist wasn't particularly concerned with either tonal or lyrical accuracy.  His voice, a baritono alto, was belting out bits and bobs of some popular Latino music, and what it lacked in precision and consistency it made up for in exuberance.  

As the truck rumbled down the hill towards our house, the singer came into view.

They weren't stopping at every house, as this was evidently a garden waste pickup, and so the truck was booking along at a healthy pace.  He was young and eager and wearing headphones, hanging as far off the back of the truck as he could, one arm extended out to catch the breeze.  It slowed as it approached the house of a neighbor who'd set out the correct materials.

As they approached the bins, he leapt off, still singing along to whatever he was listening to.  Grabbing a can, he dumped it rhythmically into the maw of the crusher, clearly timing his motions with the music.

He returned the bin to the curb with a playful flick, then ran to his place on the truck.  He leapt up to grab the rear bar with all the pleasure of a child jumping aboard a merry-go-round, and as the truck pulled away, he leaned again into the wind.  He extended his arm and open hand to play through the rush of air as he disappeared down the street, still serenading the morning like a trash truck Julie Andrews.

It's amazing how an attitude can change the flavor of our day.