It had been a long and tiring day. For a moment I sat in the drivers seat of my parked car, with the window down I could feel the cool night air against the side of my face and off in the distance I could hear the calls of a male tawny owl as if summoning me to the quiet of night.
I cast my mind over the day. A series of "can you just" tasks had been given to me by a client. Strange how those three words are so quick to utter but can end up taking hours to complete. Todays "can you just" had left me working flat out for the best part of nine hours in front of a computer. On finishing the task and sending the files off for scrutiny I clambered out of my chair and into the kitchen to find something to eat. I found the cupboards bare and was left with no option but to drive off to a supermarket to stock up on what I could before they closed for the night. To be brutally honest I am not a fan of the supermarkets but the need for food and the unfortunate fact that the septic tank for the hovel was blocked up and left me in need of the facilities pushed me that way.
It was not long before I found myself beneath the blue lights of the supermarket gents wash room. The supermarket has a problem with drug users shooting up in the toilets so they had the lighting installed to ensure veins were hard to find. Unfortunately it also left the wet areas on the tiled floor hard to see and footing was just as treacherous as an iced up winter road. I ventured out into the sales floor in the hope of picking up a bargain loaf of bread or a end of date item, a young couple crowded over the bargain bucket area of the bakery isle. They took almost everything! I can only deduce that they have vast freezer at home or a huge amount of mouths to feed. There was no chance all the bread they had crammed into their trolley could be eaten before it could go bad. As luck would have it I found a loaf someone had misplaced on another rack and decided it would be just fine.
The check outs held their usual charm. There were far too few tills on and it was only when the store staff realised we were queuing four deep that they decided to open another. I walked towards the new till just in time to see a man race past me and bang down a box of beer on the conveyor. "Wow that guy must be desperate to have a pint," I thought. It was only when I noticed his girlfriend trot by me with a full trolley of produce I understood he was just trying to ensure he was not held up by me and my few items. He smirked at his beer, clearly pleased with his little trick, his girlfriend was a little more open about it and just laughed. An all too familiar feeling of annoyance began to build up in me. It seems to be the relentless ignorance and constant niggles & digs from all sides that push a normal sane person to breaking point. I made up my mind to try and learn from it not to worry about it, I could allow a couple of minutes in my day to learn from people who are clearly masters at their art. One day they may learn something from me.
Mercifully the traffic around the town was quiet at that time of night and I was soon back on the country lanes heading back to the hovel and a few minutes to sit within the darkness. My mind ticked from thought to thought, from building a composting loo to the works on the garden to allow me to grow herbs and some food. It seems a far more enjoyable way of getting to food than the commercial twenty first century foraging I had just been through. The call of the tawny brought me back to my place and time from the realm of thought, it carried a clarity and simplicity of existence sadly missing in the commercial heart of town.