"You look like a Christmas present," I said. She smiled.
By the spring of 1969, I had recuperated up in Oregon long enough to be ready for another go at San Francisco. I got a job at the phone company on New Montgomery Street. That was where I met Melanie. She'd had a kid when she was fifteen. A daughter. Wendy. Wendy had just turned four. Melanie and Wendy were living out in the Mission with a freckle-faced bricklayer named Dick. Wendy's real father was long gone. So were a bunch of other guys by then. Melanie and I were alone in one of the elevators. She had on a shiny green blouse, a short tight red skirt and a pair of pretty red and green earrings.
"You look like a Christmas present," I said.
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