I can't not talk about Friday morning...
Having spent a couple mornings at the park by the police station, I decided to try my luck at the park across from the market. I got there, and found a parkbench, and started scoping the place out. Pulled out my journal, jotted a few notes. Random guy on a bike comes by, says "I don't mean no disrespect, but I think you're incredibly gorgeous. Just wanted to make your day." Okay...whatever, I can deal with that. He comes by a second time, and says something else...I decide if I have random people approaching me, I need to ask them to do a survey (seems reasonable, I've had decent success with this tactic dealing with tour guides downtown) Well...I start my survey, and I get to the question on marital status, and he asks if I want to marry him. I....remain as professional as possible, smile, and inform him that my boyfriend would have some issues with that. I keep going, and get to the question about "do you intend to have any more children?" he tells me "write that it depends on you." He leans towards me, jabbing a finger at the paper, and I get a whiff of the contents of his metal cup he's holding. Rum. Oh shit- not a good situation.
I finish the survey, get rid of him as nicely and professionally as I possibly can (did I mention that it came up that he'd been deported from the US, and used to sell weed in Los Angeles?)
He then proceeds to send his buddies over to talk to me (not bad data-wise, I got about 4 surveys total, I think). One was a former Navy guy from the US (went to school in Atlanta, on disability now)...a few weren't terribly savory characters. I did about 3 surveys, then the whole thing dissolved into a complete mess (not that it wasn't one beforehand). One fellow is questioning me about religion, asking whether I believe we're still subject to "the moral law." Another guy, smelling of rum and urine kept lurking around. He gave me a pen, told me he loved me, showed me the form he got at the drs office with his name on it, gave me his phone number, asked for my address (I wrote down a garbled mess roughly resembling an SC address with a TN zip code) and then proceeded to take a grubby ring off his finger and informs me that it's for me, "white gold and diamonds, because you're my queen." Meanwhile, the other guy is giving me a lecture about God and Moses and Jesus, while I'm trying to come up with an adequate response to the Mayan gentleman who just told me that his wife died after they'd been married a short time, and now he's 80 and alone in the world except for a sister who lives with him.
Finally I say something about leaving for lunch (yes, this all took place in broad daylight, in a park, between 10 and 11:30 AM) and retreat to Cornerstone.
Don't think I'll be going back to that park.