I Wore a Vintage Dress Today and I Didn’t Get Embarrassed

This morning I went to the Pocatello farmer’s market in Old(e) Town(e), and it was really impressive. I guess that should come as no surprise, but I’ve been gearing myself up to get out there and buy some delicious local veggies for a few weeks, and now that I finally did it, I’m sold.

Grass-fed local beef from the farmer's market

I met up with Genevieve for lunch at a Cuban sandwich shop that I used in a story I did on Pokey small businesses a couple weeks ago, and while we were standing around waiting to order, I was scanning the place for the manager I had interviewed, a little Latina woman named Marta with jet black hair.

We had just asked for two classic Cubans and I figured Marta must have taken Saturday off, when I heard, “Hiee Bree-tany!” Marta smiling up at me over the glass divider.

We chatted, and I said how busy I had seen them be all week, and Marta just smiled and nodded along.

Gen and I ate our sandwiches in the back corner of the little shop, and just as we were about to leave, Marta swung open the side door to the patio seating area and said, “We’be had such a bi-see, bi-see lunch hour… so anyone joo can name a city in Coo-ba that ees not Hay-bana… gess a free coffee!” There was a pause as everyone smiled at her, and for a moment I thought “God this is gonna be like high schoolll and no one’s gonna answerrrr and what even IS a city in Cu–” when a man shouted out some city name and everyone clapped.

Gen had to run to breaking news, so I got back in my car, where the dirt-covered onions I bought were giving up their sweet scents to the sunlight heating up the Jeep. I know they make some people cry, but god I love ’em.

When I started the ignition, there was an interview on NPR with the late David Foster Wallace‘s sister, Amy, and she was crying over the memory of her brother (the writer committed suicide in Sept. 2008). I hadn’t heard anything before that, and the interviewer stopped the process to get Amy Kleenex and asked her to think of some happy memories.

Amy talked about driving across Texas with David and him forcing her to learn to sing harmonies when their boombox batteries hit the bricks, and I drove down Center Street, crawling through the alternating stop signs smiling.

Because even when you realize you moved away from everyone you love, even when the anxiety stings, and  you think you’re doing the wrong thing, even then, beautiful things happen. People’s honesty surprises you. And science makes your car smell like onions.

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