Archive for July 12th, 2008

The neighborhood effect

Yesterday, on my way home from work, I stopped at the neighborhood liquor store.  Elizabeth and I had consumed a couple of my mom’s bottles of wine in the past few weeks and I thought it might be nice to at least replace one or two, and maybe buy a bottle for the weekend.  Or some beer.  I hadn’t really decided. I ended up getting wine and beer. 

As I pulled into the parking space, I noticed my 4th grade school teacher in the adjacent spot.  She and her husband are in the same crowd as my parents, and her kids, although not my age, are around my age.  We waived.  Once inside the store, we politely avoided each other as not to crowd the other’s decision making (it isn’t the largest store).

We both ended up at the register at the same time, we spoke, Hey, how are you, good to see you.  She asked me about the shoulder surgery my dad had undergone the day before, she had heard about it the day before at the vet’s office – the vet happens to be my dad’s best friend (his Ireland travel buddy).  We spoke of our dogs, and how we were glad it was the weekend.  One of the town drunks (who was purchasing his own weekend provisions) offered to help her carry her purchases to the car.  She declined. 

I got into my car before she did and I drove off before she got out of the parking spot.  As I pulled out onto the street, I saw my brother pulling into the liquor store.  He lives about two blocks away, and after all, it was 5 o’clock on Friday afternoon.  He made the hand motion of spinning his finger around – the TURN AROUND signal.  So I turned around immediately and was back in the parking lot as my former teacher was pulling out.  She stopped – rolled down her window and said –



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