It’s daytime in Oakland. It’s normal enough. I just got out of school and I have to walk home. It’s near the end of October so the sun is going down a lot faster than usual, but I have some daylight to work with, it should be no bother.
I don’t walk incredibly fast home, but instead take my time walking. Mom’s boyfriend brought bed bugs into the house and I’m tired of being there being bit all day every day, all night every night. I showed her a blog post about how to kill bed bugs last night, but I doubt she has read it or done anything about them. Her infatuation for her boyfriend and lack of care or worry about me is frustrating right now. I’d rather face the streets of Oakland at night than deal with that tonight. Maybe I’ll take a different way home.
As I walk through Downtown Oakland, traffic starts to really build up as people are getting off work. The roads are filled, the sidewalks are busy, but every few blocks, there are alleys that seem barren. In the dark of the night, they look a little omnious even. I can’t help but become extremely interested with the prospect of what may lie down an alley, and my curiosity gets the best of me.
I knew better, but as I strolled down a silent alley, I felt a presence of company in my midst. I did a few 360 looks around me, but saw nothing of my stature. What I did see were a couple of metal trashcans, and I started to hear some clanging around. I approached one of these trashcans, and as I was about 4 feet away, a few litters of mice scurry out from the trashcan and run. My close proximity scarred them, but some actually headed right for me and were crawling over my feet! Gross!
I booked it down the rest of the alley, and found myself in cross streets of multiple other alleys. I had 3 other ones that I could walk down. One alley I can see 2 raccoons digging through a trashcan, no sense in seeing anything else down that way. The other two alleys are suspiciously dark as well, but I see one that has a pink glow coming from one of the buildings, I want to check that out.
My stroll down the alley turned to a jam sesh. I could hear rave music the closer and closer I got to that pink glow. I musty stench overtook me as I started to hear and smell more and more what the reason for the glow was. A single window allowed me to see what the source of the pink glow was, and as I looked into the building, I see a dance class full of naked males participating in what I could only guess to be a zumba class. Nothing completely out of pocket for me to see, it is the bay area after all.
I spent the rest of the night exploring the alleys of Oakland, just trying to get a sense of what really goes on behind the limelight in such a big city. If you gather up the courage to do some alley walking, I recommend bringing a buddy to go with you for safety reasons. Also, stay protected. This is my last walking down an alley story that didn’t end so poorly.