I can hear the rubber slippers slapping from the veranda, sharp plastic metronome keeping time with the dawn. It was Mr. Menace ambling in his habitual slouch on the sidewalk, right through the smoke that blew from the garbage heap not twenty feet from the wharf.
5:55 AM on a Sunday in December. Kids are out on their bikes chattering as they swoop in and out while traffic steadily builds to a trickle, at six or seven it’ll be a stream. But for now, birdcall still dominates sharp and ferocious.