Little Miss fidgeted at the counter as I went over the various configurations of biscuit available, attracting the attention of a kind-looking older woman barely taller than she is.
“Little Miss, what do you want on your biscuit?” I asked.
“This appears to be a biscuit-focused establishment, m’dear. How ’bout bacon and egg?”
The dancing continued. The older lady flashed a warm smile.
“How old are you, young lady?” she asked. Little Miss raised a splayed hand. “I thought so,” she replied. “My grandson is your age.”
“It’s a good age, and she’s the right amount of rambunctious,” I said.
“Well, she’s delightful. And so coordinated this morning,” she added, ignoring that one sock was shell pink and the other was a faded magenta.
Little Miss was warming out of her bashful state, and did a little turn, finished with a buy-me-something-from-the-gumball-machine smile.
“No quarters, I’m afraid,” I said with a shrug.
“She looks just like you,” the older lady said. I grinned back.
“Well, she’s my boyfriend’s daughter, but I like to think we share a common joie de vivre.”
Her smile faltered, but only for a moment. I heard a slight derisive snort from one of the two burly bearded Bubbas behind us, clad in a shambolic assemble of grimy flannel, camo overalls, and the other accessories of the backwoods huntsman. I looked back, but only briefly.
“Oh,” the older lady said, her smile back in full flower. “How modern! Such a lovely young lady.”
She picked up her tray and headed into the dining room. Little Miss danced a lopsided waltz with her stuffed dog, and I looked up at the Bubbas, who smirked back.
“Yup,” said the larger of the pair. “We’re…umm, ‘modern,’ too.”
With that, they both turned their rough, work-hardened hands my way, real subtle-like, and smiled, showing me identical matte-finished silver bands.
Well, how ’bout that…how modern!
“People are the same all over,” I said.
“You know it.”
©2017 Joe Belknap Wall