It was a beautiful summer evening on Canyon Road. We were holding an opening reception at the art gallery for one of the artists we represented, and I was there to meet and greet and try to sell some art. I didn't really like working these events - I've never liked crowds - but it was my job, a job I'd gotten quite good at, and it was a way to show support for these artists, many of whom had become close friends of mine.
I was mingling and working my way through the crowd when I had an uncontrollable urge to step outside. The sea of people parted and I stepped under the portal just as several young Buddhist monks were making their way down Canyon Road. There were perhaps twenty of them walking down this very old, very narrow road lined with window boxes full of flowers and small colorful gardens beneath aging adobe. Against this backdrop I stood transfixed for several minutes by these incredibly beautiful monks in their burgundy and saffron robes. But, even beyond their beauty, there was a deep sense of serenity. My friend, Michael, came and stood by me and we watched together.
When the last monk had disappeared up a tiny side street, I looked at the gallery directly across from us. Lo and behold, there stood Billy Bob Thornton with what I can only assume were a couple of friends. I looked at Michael and he looked back at me, as if to acknowledge we were seeing the same thing. When I looked back at Billy Bob, just for a second, our eyes met. I turned and walked back into the gallery.
I know trouble when I see it.
Billy Bob was in town promoting himself as a musician with a new album. He had been at Borders earlier in the day.