Paper towels? The grocery store shelves stocked with plentiful paper towels.
It was an odd experience since my last sojourn into the grocery store, dutifully wearing my charcoal filtered mask from when the paper product aisle appeared like abandoned metal. The toilet paper section still barren and cold.
But brave stocking clerks were getting ahead of customer need. I know it. I feel it. The daily things assumed to be plentiful – no longer, the once ignored clerk, the truck driver, the maintenance people, the checkout lady, no longer assumed or ignored.
My daily survival depends on them existing, otherwise, my survival no longer easy and comfortable.
Maybe I’ll get a haircut sooner than later?
I know I’m follicle rich, but that’s a genetic thingy and the relative length and style has nothing to do with my survival. I can wait, it’s an easy decision.
I wondered about the invisible mother of two without a job or savings?
Her decisions are much harder than mine. I’m alone and in control of my carbon based spaceship.
As I walked home with my provisions, I was thankful I had only bought what I needed for a few days into the future.
And then I noticed the little things along my downtown St. Petersburg route.
The bright sun warmed the early afternoon and freshly planted flowers blazed with color.
A construction crew actively repairing a city street corner. Another human group building out a restaurant. A middle-aged man painting a wooden surface. Bikers glided down the street, passing me on toward the Tampa Bay waters well-stocked with powerful boats and sailing vessels. The tall masts pointing upward toward the blue sky.
I guess paper towels are renewing like a springtime ritual and all my previous lifetime assumptions and expectations no longer valid.
I’m thankful to have a basic need managed.
My thoughts are like the slow cadence from Aaron Copeland’s work, Appalachian Springtime. It starts slowly, and then it gets faster and faster until we return to calm.
Life will reemerge. I am confident. I am resolute. But I wonder what will be normal?
I know that invisible mom’s going to discover a new job. I may not know her or see her, but she’s nearby. I know it in my mind and in my heart that life will work out for her.
And going forward, her children will view their lives through new lenses.
I’m thankful for my life. I am thankful for my health.
It’s springtime. I have hope. And I have paper towels.
Maybe someday soon I’ll get a haircut?
But for now, I can wait.