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Witness

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ItÕs June! I should be on the beach or in the park relaxing and sunbathing. But I am not. I am sitting here in my cubicle under the violently white florescent lights. My coffee has turned to room temperature, IÕm hungry even though lunch was only a half an hour ago, and if I hear my boss complain to me about sloppy signatures one more time I swear IÕll quit on the spot. How did I end up here in an office building? I always told myself my job would be what makes me happiest. But like Mom and Dad said, PaintingÕs not going to pay the bills, honey.Ó Maybe not, but it sure beats sitting in an uncomfortable chair doing paperwork while I should be outside. Look at the sun today! ThereÕs not a cloud in the sky and the weather that makes people happiest has finally come. There should be holidays for these days to corroborate this sunshine. The temperature is a delightful 75, with no humidity! I guess IÕll just have to drink it in from watching otherÕs enjoyment out the window.

I think the clock has stopped moving. Either that or it went backwards because there is no way possible itÕs only been three minutes since I last looked up. IÕll sneak another glance out the window, just to see if anyone is worth a few precious moments of people watching. Hmm, seven stories up isnÕt helping me spot anyoneÉ they all just seem to be moving specks! Tiny moving dots going about their business. Across the way at the parking garage there are about six or seven cars in my view, an Audi, a Lexus, a Honda, a GMC Suburban, and Mercury, and a BMW? Maybe thatÕs a SaabÉ itÕs too hard to tell from this angle and of course the glare from the lights is terrible.

I can see all the vehicles are empty with the exception of the suburban. The light is on and thereÕs a woman in her late forties perhaps early fifties on the phone. She looks more stressed than I do, and thatÕs pretty stressed if I do say so myself. She keeps dialing and hanging up, about three times before she finally starts talking to someone. I take one more longing glance at the clock and return to the stack of papers in front of me.
Finally! Finished with those. That must have eaten up a good chunk of time! Ah yes look at that, 35 whole minutes done. Looking back at the parking garage I notice the woman is still on the phone. I wonder if she reached who sheÕd been trying to find before, she looks more stressed than she did a half hour ago if thatÕs possible. The poor thing looks like she hasnÕt slept in weeks! I wonder what her story is. She doesnÕt look like a city person, and this isnÕt exactly middle-aged suburbiaÕs paradise. She hangs up the phone and puts it down, but as she leans down I canÕt see her anymore. Now that sheÕs sitting back up I see tears upon tears streaming down the somewhat lined face.
Looking around, she opens the car door and steps out. SheÕs wearing a gorgeous black sweater, but sheÕs so thin! Too thin if you ask me. Is she sick? Still more and more tears leak out of the corners of her eyes, and sheÕs not bothering to wipe them away. ItÕs like she doesnÕt notice theyÕre there. And now sheÕs looking at the edge. SheÕs not going toÉ.is she? And now sheÕs standing up. I yell to her but she canÕt hear me. SheÕs looking down and IÕm pounding on the window yelling at her to stop. I grab my phone to call someone, anyone to try to help me. But itÕs too late. I watch in absolute horror as her frail body steps off the ledge and travels out of view. I scream louder than I ever have but it doesnÕt seem like enough. I barely notice my co-workers helping me to my feet. This day is no longer beautiful. This day is forever one of the darkest days of my life. This day I witnessed a suicide.





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