Wednesday, September 11, 2013
The Cake Lady and The Banana Man
She picked out the wrong cheese.
She crinkled up her nose as she realized her blunder. What she thought were slices of mozzarella were actually slices of feta. The thick, white rectangles were all ready crammed into a container and couldn't be put back; she contemplated just leaving them on the ledge of the cheese and olive bar, but felt guilty about wasting food (even nasty tasting cheese) so she dropped it into her basket and moved to the correct fromage. She was snapping the lid on the new container when she felt a finger softly caress her arm. She cringed; she hate being touched, especially in public. She turned her head and found him standing next to her, confusion clouding his face at his blunder. A bunch of bananas rested quietly in his shopping cart.
"I'm sorry if I startled you. I didn't realize you were in such deep thought over dairy products."
She smiled. She liked his cheeky sense of humor.
"I'm hypersensitive to people putting their hands on me. It brings back bad memories. I'm trying to get a better handle on it."
He was uncomfortable with her honesty. He could imagine the bruises covering her face and body. It made him second guess every move he made around her.
"Done for the day?"
"Yes, no more baking for me today. I just want to go home and soak my feet."
He thought he should say something else but felt his throat tighten. The two of them stood awkwardly together, each wondering why the other didn't leave all ready.
"See ya tomorrow?"
"Yea, sure, I'll be in the bakery bright and early. Those cakes won't bake themselves."
They both laughed at the inanity of that comment, then went their separate way, bananas to the left, cheese to the right.