Sunday, November 11, 2012


Sunday morning, when most people are sleeping in or relaxing at home, is an excellent time to do errands. At 9 AM it's easy to cross the street without fear of being run down by an impatient motorist. The aisles of the grocery store are not crowded. One doesn't have to wait long in line to be served at the checkout counter.

I just got back from the Plaza Cote des Neiges. I bought groceries at Marche Fu Tai. The parking lot and the mall appeared bleak and desolate under a dark sky. There’s still a knot in my stomach. I walk around for days with a ball of anxiety in the gut. It's the brain/stomach connection. I can’t stomach this any longer. I better find a way to reduce stress. Pets are not permitted here. Don’t ever degrade yourself to wallowing in self pity. Be dignified and confident. Enjoy the situation.

I marvelled at the sequence of walking to and from the grocery store. First, I'm walked down an avenue of tall trees, branches appearing black after the recent rain. The sidewalk is still wet and covered in dead leaves. I take side streets and approach the back end of the mall. I walk past a bakery, luggage boutique, jewelry store and numerous other small enterprises in the mall. Enter the Chinese grocery store. 

Pick out items. Go to the checkout counter. Leave the mall. Cross the parking lot. Gaze at the shabby rectangular apartment blocks and the bland windows. Each scene vanishes as if it had never happened. 

It's hard to believe that an hour ago I was face to face with a cashier at the grocery store. We didn't exchange a word. They're friendly there, but don't make small talk or phoney smiles. In the blink of an eye, I'll be in another situation. This moment will be mostly forgotten. A few vague impressions might remain, distorted in memory.

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