Saturday morning meant, as usual, a trip to Shaker Square for the bounties of Northeast Ohio's small farms. Disappointed to see the apple stores absent from Woolf Farm's stand, I bought my other staples and made it out for under ten dollars: snap peas, arugula and the strawberries I don't love but buy simply for the novelty and excitement of having fruit in season.
Unsure of whether or not I'd want anything else, and my cash depleted, I cut across the train tracks and over the grass towards my bank's ATM. Also padding that direction was an old man with a stiff, staccato step, barely balancing a cardboard flat of strawberries. Karma or a girl scout sixth-sense compelled me to offer a trade: why don't I carry those for you? can you hold my coffee? and we slow-walked and long-talked to his old Buick. I don't know his name because he didn't offer and I had no conversation space to ask it, but he did propose hiring me as a house-aid (living space, clothing money, and car included) and left me a quart of fruit and a dinner offer.
A character indeed! Ninety-two years old and filling me up with stories of his near-death experiences, saved only by the virtues of eating organically. I wonder if he'll call me. I wonder if I'll pick up.