Julio’s Repose

I have, as I’ve described elsewhere, this big-ass flowering yard that I didn’t exactly go looking for; it just came attached to the only house I could afford.

I am still recovering from the effects of puttering in it when I knew I shouldn’t, at the peak of tree pollen production, but despite feeling a little strange and glassy yesterday, I couldn’t help stepping out with clients who were one and all effusive about the plant here, and the one over there, and what is that growing at the lamppost?

At six pm I saw off a runner fella who was unusually taken with the corner shrubbery, where you will find the Tomb of the Unknown Kitty and also Julio’s Repose. The Repose — a small bower of assorted evergreens and a central dogwood — has been variously configured over the years, including a couple of years of complete overgrowth, but usually it’s an inviting enclosure just beside the main four-lane road. Alas, despite the formality of a traffic barrier, anyone can wander in pretty easily from the sidewalk so I took it pretty seriously a few years back when David, my not-terribly-swift gardener, called one evening about nine-thirty: “I hope I’m not callin too late but I was worried and I tole my wife and she said you better call and I’m sorry if I’m botherin you but there’s some people in your bushes I thought it was some sorta animal but I saw this red shirt and I thought someone was fightin in there and I was scairt and my wife said I oughta call you — ” It is very difficult to turn off David’s faucet, but I finally got him to hang up so I could call the cops, who eventually extruded Julio, hailing from Mexico or Salvador at best guess, all of fourteen and about 120 pounds, sixty ounces or so of which were Corona Cerveza. He was hearing the music and had no real objection to being a guest of the County for the remainder of the night, if indeed he understood what was going on.

This time the PD had arrived without my being aware of anything. About three seconds after I waved goodbye to my admiring client, two gentlemen in black trousers and bulky cop gear emerged from the Repose, escorting its latest tenant. Some passerby had apparently done me a favor and made what my Albino Ex used to term a “broom-the-wino” call. The party in question seemed a little older this time and was, if possible, feeling even less pain, since he had curled up for a kip on a thick bed of dried holly leaves.

I really can’t afford a fence. Maybe I will salt the place with a few buried whoopee cushions or a motion-activated skunk release.


8 thoughts on “Julio’s Repose

  1. We used to have this same problem at the coin shop. I’d walk out to my car, or just pull up in my car to a soundly sleeping drunkard. They really didn’t appreciate being roused from their sleep so I let Arlington’s finest do the chore.

    If the bums themselves aren’t bad enough, the residual piss smell, the vomit left to dry and flake away in the sun or horrifically re-animate in the rain, the bottles and the other stuff they seem to carry on their persons until it falls out while the sleep makes for great customer relations.

  2. This reminds me of a story my mother tells of staying at a B&B in a semi-rural area, only to be awakened in the middle of the night by bloodcurdling howling. Upon going downstairs to pursue the matter with the owners, she was told: “Oh, don’t worry — that’s just Frank, the local drunk. He’s fallen down the gully again, and he’s stuck in the blackberry bushes.”

    The police were called to extricate Frank, who was a torn and bleeding heap by the time he was untangled. Evidently Frank did this at least once a week, which was certainly hard on his wardrobe.

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