It’s a rich world out there. The world that passes the windows of my shop. Not rich in money but rich in movement, intentions, and Woolies bags. And conversation; ribbons of it whip backwards:
‘Can’t believe he keeps going, the dickhead.’
‘Just say no.’
‘Another day, ok? Another day. When we get home, we’ll ask mum. Give me that fruit box.’
A lady screamed, ‘No, no, no,’ at an approaching dog. The owners were offended. ‘Nothing wrong with OUR dog,’ they said darkly, looking at her dog, a chocolate coloured beauty, rubbery with joy and not being obedient. ‘Allowed to have an opinion’, they were told.
I watched them trail to the bakery, wishing they’d been quicker on the retort.
But the other day, someone said, ‘Amazing these little places.’
They meant me.
‘Amazing these little places, aren’t they…’
An unseen listener must have answered something.
‘Amazing these little places, aren’t they. That just keep going. Do they even get customers? Hope they do.’
Oh well, no need to worry – we do, we do, and we do, and even the passers by are valuable, so cheers to you all!
Painting A Literary Roost by Camille Engel