Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Let the world dream otherwise

In line at Trader Joe's after the rain had suddenly stopped and the sun trumpeted out from behind the clouds, I thought Ohhhh, I am being a person who complains about wearing a mask, only I'm doing it silently inside my own head. Hoo boy, it was hot inside that mask with my breath all steamy and exiting in little puffs I could feel on my chin and neck and cheeks. I felt woozy and suddenly remembered that I'd dreamed the night before of fainting and afterward being cheered up by my friends, who brought me to the tour bus of a famous musician I didn't recognize, though I anticipated being able to impress someone with the story of eating Cheetos with him.

Ahead of me in line was a sort of punk-rockabilly guy with hair shaved on the sides and tattoos and rolled-up black jean shorts and boots, chatting at length (from six feet away, masked) with an older lady in polyester and a slight hunch in her back. White hair, animated body language, both of them were laughing and chatting and smiling (smizing). I loved them.

Beside me in the line parallel to mine was a 70-something couple, the woman talking so loudly I thought for sure I'd get some good Overheard material. I did, eventually, but mostly she lost her train of thought or forgot the punchline of story after story. They started out so promising! "So she says to me, she says, 'I'm okay with babies, babies are fine, but when...Now what did she say? I can't remember.'"

Reader, I did eventually make it into Trader Joe's. I also visited the library (or, the table in the doorway of the library, where, by appointment, you can now pick up books you've requested) and the post office. Three places in one day!

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