Called Out

New York - Times Square - July 1977

I let my mind wander all over the page and then call it bullshit. I label it worthless, complain that I am at the starting point, call it a waste of time.

It is still a journey when I go around in circles. It is up to me. I choose: see it as going nowhere or to see it as an adventure.

There are many sayings about learning from your mistakes. A few remind me to learn from my successes.

The place you come back to is not the place you left. The person returning is not the person who left. Even no change is change, everything is older. Either you learn from your travels or you become more set in your ways; Repetition anchors habits. Choose change to choose the change.

Each has table for their laptop. Coats and bags fill the chairs around them. Coffee cups and plates with crumbs on them fill the middle table.

The older woman, mid-30’s, taps on a graphic on one of the pieces of paper on the table to her right. She turns the page slightly towards her colleague and pulls up a similar looking image on her computer. Her table-mate nods to the beat of the points made.

Six-plus places for two people. The incivility annoys me. I choose words as I slowly make my way over to their territory. Calm, the grumpy old man in me suppressed, I approach the tables.

I smile at the woman on the bench. “Hellooo.” She smiles back with a flattered look that says I am knocking at the right door.  I widen my smile. “The place is getting busy and there are people looking for spots.”

Her friend starts gathering papers and apologizes. “You need a place to sit?”

“Thank you. No.” I lift my cup. “I took mine to go.” I point my head towards an older couple standing with a tray and looking lost.

Happy with myself, I walk out of the coffee shop.

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