“The writer operates at a peculiar crossroads where time and place and eternity somehow meet. His problem is to find that location.” – Flannery O’Connor
“$20.41”, the very young cashier said, and then proceeded to say straight-face – “the year I was born”.
Odd, I thought. Maybe she was a time traveler. I wasn’t sure how to broach the subject. And even if she was, how could I have proven her right or wrong?
But then, I thought, maybe I’d stumbled upon the crossroads where time and place and eternity somehow met. At a vitamin store? Why not! The gods’ humor is limitless.
She was waiting for a reaction from me. I just kind of spaced out, knowing I could get away with it for a spell as I’m older, she was much younger, and I could attribute my spaced out condition to being old…in her eyes anyway.
For a flash of a second, my senile brain told me – go ahead, ask her if she believes in time travel. Being old, and with that, being prone to not having an internal filter that might prevent me from saying something stupid – I went ahead and asked.
“Oh yes,” she said. “Most definitely.”
A couple of awkward seconds passed as I looked for any signs that a time traveler might exhibit. What those signs might be I have no idea.
She broke the few seconds of time traveling silence and said, “I love to do things like this just to see people’s reaction.”
I didn’t care to inquire what my reaction looked like. I figured if she was indeed a time traveler, she was much more advanced than I and would have already surmised my stupidity from the look on my face.
“It’s never been proven one way or the other whether time travel is possible,” she started in. “When I was a little girl my Mom use to tell me that all time was before God, so it just made sense that time traveling was a real thing.”
I wondered what reaction my face was giving way to. She just smiled at me.
I could have pressed her a bit for more information…like, how do you do it? Is a machine involved? And if so, mind if I try it? But there was no proof one way or the other.
Time, a place and eternity converging at a vitamin store? Evidently not. I wasn’t transported anywhere but back to the car to take me home. I wasn’t given any type of assurance of true enlightenment or total consciousness. Such a drag.
Where I was hoping to go – I haven’t a clue. I’ve always thought that since thought, intelligence, charity, kindness, love and empathy are in such short supply in the modern era…maybe there was another time when such attributes most humans were born with, was more evident than it is now.
But as I left the vitamin store, I took a quick glance back, just to see what the young cashier was doing. Was she laughing at me, winking at me, throwing a cynical look in my direction…none of the above.
Alas, she simply had vanished. And I had lost the location of where time, place and eternity might have converged…or maybe not!
Tonight’s musical offering:
Photo credit: http://www.unsplash.com/@sethmacey