STL, One Step at a Time

It’s easy to have “firsts” here, because everything is so new and different.  Today’s first was trivial and literally not many steps away.  I was going to check out the gas station 7-Eleven store next door, but wouldn’t you know it, I chose the five minutes I guess the lone person managing the place stepped out and locked up!  So I walked farther up the street along the strip malls and the manic traffic to the Dollar Tree.

You know I’m a poor oldster when I shop at a dollar store, and actually find what I need, cheap, yay!  The whole time, I could hear one of the cashiers, a black gentleman, politely and respectfully greeting each gloomy customer who walked in.  It was way above and beyond his pay grade!  When I got up to him to check out, I made a point to be friendly back, and asked him what his secret was!  He confided that he actually had been angry about something, with anger control issues, so he tried to compensate and diffuse it by being friendly to people, to somewhat improve the mood.  After more friendly banter back and forth, he said he felt a little better already!  I said glad to be of service!  We joked around a little more while he rang me up.  I doubt the other bored people in line were amused, but we were, anyway.  So that happened.  My first tentative step into what passes for my apartment’s neighborhood.

Today I got a lot more unpacked and set in order.  I even got my rocks out (shut up) and seashells, which, along with the books and booze and other personal touches, means I’m feeling more myself and at home.  I know, I hear you thinking, what about the so-called new minimalist phase?  It will come in time; hard to teach an old hippie new tricks, like the one where you have enough furniture to distribute all the relics so they look less like a bazaar.

I have a few more business “matters of consequence” to accomplish this week, and then maybe I’ll get to putter in someone’s garden.  I feel so cut off from the natural world where I belong.  But the peace of mind just being here outweighs any sacrifice I’ve had to make.






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