Out & about. Small details stand out, as they tend to, when I am 'watching'.
Gom has a favourite Fruit & Vegetable Shop, at a Mall close to us. He likes to visit, to catch some of the bargains. Which of course, are not always bargains.
But the persuasive patter of the Spruiker, gets a lot of ready customers. Gom included.
The man who Spruiks, is very thin, has dyed his thinning hair, so as not to appear grey,
or elderly, in this youth oriented world. It is a rich Auburn, which I suspect may have been his natural colour, since his skin has the marks which would indicate a Red Head.
He must be very effective, since he sells quite a lot of his 'specials' by spruiking the bargains. People tend to become excited in the moment, and free samples of the sweet fruit or cheeses, gather in the crowds, who become willing to part with more money than usual, to 'grab the bargains'.
A sharp faced man, with little hair, and an unfortunate cast in one eye, who assures me he knows his procucts, when I venture to enquire about his wares, on a Market Stall. It is quite hard to address this person, as I am unsure which eye I need to look at, when making conversation, and asking questions. I rather guiltily pass on by, unsure of the value of his wares.
The distant gaze of the swarthy skinned, incredibly handsome, man on the stand of wonderful Olives, Antipasto foods, Artichoke hearts to die for, plus Sundried Tomatoes which melt in the mouth. I so badly want him to make eye contact, perhaps smile in greeting... He does not, and his gaze is firmly fixed on some distant point, which does not include me! Nor any of his customers, it seems, so I do not feel personally neglected, and purchase some Antipasto, in spite of the ignore.
A wheelchair bound lady, sadly perusing the clothing, in a shop offering incredible bargains. She appears to have an 'escort' who may be a Carer. The Carers have a difficult task, and appear to have endless patience. The lady in the wheelchair sighs constantly, while declaring nothing is in her size. I spy several items in her size, so indicate them to the Carer. They are all rejected. I think about the life of the Carer, but also the life of the incapacitated lady. What is left in her life to amuse her? I am sure there is very little, that she can pick and choose about. I sense the Carer is very aware of this. She remains patient, and caring.
The excited children, laughing at the Pet Shop Puppies. So trapped, so desperate to have cuddles, and company, those little animals. I suspect there are several, older than the optimum age for adoption. Their soft, pleading little eyes look out at the spectators. They are mostly too expensive for the best possible owners. I hope their little lives are saved, for a better life. Who would want to live in a glass enclosure lying on shredded paper? Unable to feel warmth of loving contact. Gom refuses to look at them, becuase he feels too sad, at the fact we cannot possibly adopt them all.
My driving skills are improving, since I am now the 'Driver'. It is not an easy mantle I wear, and confess, there are moments when I would wish I was anywhere else on the Planet.
It is almost 21 years since we became the proudest Grandparents of a gorgeous little girl. We are planning a Protrait session. Perhaps I will share.
Leonard Cohen, Everybody Knows