Fitting In

Early, steel-gray, wintry morning; city business district: Pulled up wearing jacket and tie on a lightweight, 4 wheeled single-seat, peddle-car for adults. I had been there over the weekend and found plenty of parking but on this Monday I could see most parking spots taken and older men chipping at the ice on their reserved spots. The peddle car folded into a lightweight, aluminum, double elongated A frame which I rolled along on its back two wheels while it held my netbook and coat as I entered a large building through its corner entrance. Outside the sun was coming up.A taller executive marveled at my ingenuity after an arduous parking exercise. “Drive your car into the building, use it as a replacement for your desk,” I joked. He agreed. A tall, blond woman with an Ingrid Bergman presence though with finer features and much lighter hair said, “I couldn’t replace my desk computer.” I mentioned my netbook. But she said that she needed software and a very high resolution monitor as she was in charge of publications and needed Pantone® colors. We chatted as we walked, the day brightening behind the huge expanse of glass as the building extended away from its corner entrance to many city blocks, almost resembling part of a World Showcase “You must come and see me,” she said. I said that because I was doing a small publication {still hadn’t interviewed as an independent contractor yet} I would have to, and asked her name. “Yeip.” I gently grasped her fingers in greeting. We walked very briskly together another block making comments of the city alongside us. Finally we parted and I left the building and went into an aging pub with high ceiling. I found the men’s room in which a family of Korean immigrants were sleeping on old theater chairs.

I spent the end of the afternoon replacing the barrel on an old, though serviceable, M60 machine gun before going out on bunker where I was joined by newbies. A man I had just met asked to use my address as an example of country living. I demurred, suggesting he make up something with a Rural Road. Then I told him of a 13 mile stretch in the southern part of the state where there was not a single habitation. And the small road was ominous with the overhang of an eerie backwoods. I recounted finding an abandoned village in the midst of this area where there were strange carvings reminiscent of cults like Hitler’s. Going there the last time I had tried to lock myself into a small house for a rest but still felt ill at ease.