Assiduity Eight

by J. Mykell Collinz

I'm surprised to find Uzma's one year old daughter, Luv, along with the grandparents, Kula and Leif, in the front room of the third house, which has the quiet atmosphere of a children's nursery.

"This house," Don says, "is mostly homeless kids or kids whose parents asked for help with some kind of illness or special care. The medical assistants, the attendants, and the maintenance people are all volunteers. It's another one of Uzma's ideas. I'm not involved, other than keeping it safe and secure from the outside."

"Uzma has many worthwhile goals," I say: "She is somewhat presumptuous in her expectations, however."

"Aren't we all?" Don says: "I don't see that as a fault, really. She's pushing the envelope, yeah, but that's how you change the world. She's not breaking anything, she's fixing it. I do what I can to help her."

"I'm interested in helping her, too," I say: "I wonder what she's talking to Rasheed about while we're gone."

"I don't know how to take you, buddy," he says: "But I like your moviemaking idea and I hope it's for real. Uzma, she'll find a way to deal with it. Rasheed, he loves movies almost as much as he loves music. You won't have any problems with him. And he's our spark plug. We feed off his boldness, cunning, and courage. He taught us how to survive in this urban jungle."

"Let's be candid here, Don," I say: "I'll need your help. And I'll need your confidence. The things we talk about stay between us."

"You'll have to earn that, buddy." he says: "I understand what you're saying. But, with Rasheed, I tell him everything. That's the nature of the relationship I have with him and it's not going to change. With Uzma, she already requires special handling. Underneath it all, she's an easy going likeable person. But she takes her function within the group very seriously. She's unrelenting in her challenge that everyone should match her concern for the future of humanity and get ready for this major catastrophic disaster she's predicting is gonna happen sometime in the not too distant future."

"Sounds like a movie theme," I say: "I wish I had a crew with me right now to start recording for a documentary on the urban farm. I think that would be a good place to begin, putting Uzma front and center as the architect and leader, while we steadily put people together with the tools and get filming experience."

"If she'll agree," Don says.

"She want's to save the world?" I say: "A blockbuster film could accelerate the process. She can't argue with that."

"I wouldn't bet on it," he replies.