Forced by high gas prices to start walking again, one Los Angeles professor discovered something new: her neighborhood. No longer wanting to drive to a park to walk her dog, Diana Wagman took it through the neighborhood, where she found reburbished homes, furniture on the curb, and—who knew—her neighbors, she writes in the Los Angeles Times.
Wagman even came to know two trash scavengers, who rummaged through the garbage every Tuesday: an older Asian woman and a younger Latina. When Wagman rescued a mirror from the curb, both seemed envious. Yet the Latina "wished me God's grace for my children," Wagman writes. "I lugged the mirror the rest of the way home feeling just a little bit fortunate that gas prices got so high."