It’s cold and I’m tired, hat pulled down low over my eyes I step into the 7-11. I can smell the coffee brewing right away, my destination is just ahead I can almost taste the coffee scalding its way down my throat.
“Hi.” comes a voice, through the fog that is my morning. I glance up and see a handsome man, nice goatee and broad smile, he works here, I see the 7-11 name marks him Ray. “Hi.” I say in return.
Fill up my coffee, two packets of Splenda and three creams, stirring them together till the color is a milky brown; I know it’s still to hot to drink, but God I want to, place one of their lids on and head toward the counter to pay for it.
“I love your shirt.” Ray says, I have to look down, so tired I’m not sure what I’m wearing.
“Oh, yeah this is one of my favorites,” one of my many Superman shirts, this one portrays him on a comic book cover, “I have a tattoo to match.” I say and start to roll up the sleeve of my jacket.
“Your hat too,” he says, I realize I’m also wearing the hat and feel the fool. He probably thinks I’m a dork, “are you a collector? It looks good on you.”
“That’ll be $1.53.” he says, still grinning broadly.
I pull two wrinkled one dollar bills out of my wallet and hand them to him, he punches some numbers into the register the drawer pops out and he slides the money into its place.
“People collect stuff, it’s cool. I collect some stuff too…” he says and closes the drawer. Suddenly he realizes my hand is out waiting for my change and his grin disappears, and his face turns crimson. “I’m sorry, can’t believe I did that.” and hands me the 0.47 cents he owes me.
“Thanks, I hope you have a great day.” I smile and start to walk out.
“You too, you too” he says as the door slowly closes.
As I enter the car, I turn one last time… there he is looking at me, that broad grin fresh on his face.