Sunday, 12 August 2012


I left the air conditioned haven that was the grocery store and a wall of humid heat hit me. A thin sheen of sweat broke out on the surface of my body making me sticky and forcing me to struggle taking a deep breath.  Like drowning in hot pudding. 

I hated this kind of heat. I swiped at my upper lip where the sweat beaded as I shifted the two grocery bags to one hand and then dug around in my purse to find my keys.  And kept shuffling things around awkwardly in my purse still trying to find them.  Why did I always lose them in the bottom of my purse.  You would think I would find a new method to make my keys accessible.  I chastised as I walked across the massive parking lot that seemed ridiculously large for the number of cars parked there. 

As I continued digging around in my purse the two grocery bags cut into my sweaty fingers I thought about the heat that had built up, in my car.  I was not looking forward to opening the door of my black car parked at the far corner of the lot where, as my friends had often told me, no one else in their right mind would park unless the lot was full.  And even then they would consider coming back another day to avoid the walk to the store.  It was my car. I had finally finished paying it off and I was always particular about my things.

But when it came to my car, my friends thought I was a little neurotic.  I think if you’ve seen the way people park and drive these days anyone in their right mind would park as far from door dinging populous.  I sighed, as my hand passed by the same objects it had been for the last few min in my purse.  Wallet, gum, phone, iPod, wallet again, receipts, gum again, lipstick, gum and receipts, notebook, some random jewellery that had hung out in my bag for a while.  Arg! Where were those keys!

By this time I was getting fed up with finding my keys. I reached the car and let the long strap of my purse slide off my shoulder and into my hand as I lowered it to the cement.  Following the action with the handles of the grocery bags, I crouched down to rummage with both hands through my purse.  I was able to shove stuff out of the way with one hand while the other continued to feel for the jingle of keys.  The ragged mettle edges brushed against my fingers and I grasped one key and pulled it out with impatience while standing up.

My tube of Viva Glam lipstick had lodged itself in the ring that held the keys together and as I pulled the keys out it flew under the car.  “Shoot! That was my favorite tube of lipstick!” I muttered as it skidded away.  Not only had I splurged to get something other than usual Vaseline for my under appreciated and often neglected lips. “It was a limited edition”  I said snarkly.  The heat making me irritable, as by this time the shower I had taken this morning was no longer apparent.

I quickly continued to open the car door, as I had just found the blasted keys, and was not going to lose them again.  Then leaned over the steering wheel and started the car.  I made sure the air conditioner was full blast before I leaned back out.  I must have been in the grocery store allot longer than I thought, I grumbled closing the door so that maybe the air conditioning could start to eat up the heat that had accumulated in my car.  I hated this much heat.  It made me short of breath and the transition between the frigged air-conditioned buildings and the suffocating air, often made me lightheaded.
I plucked the bags off the ground and and leaned in to put them on the front passenger seat so they would be in front of the air-conditioner when it came on.  All I needed was the milk to sour before I got home. 

Now for that lipstick.  I grabbed my jacket from the back seat and laid it under my knees as I knelt down onto the asphalt and peeked under the car.  The lipstick had rolled just a little beyond arms reach and partially tucked behind a white stick of some sort. I reached for the lipstick, but couldn't quite reach it.  The pavement was burning the hand I balanced on and I pulled back to shake it trying in vain to cool it in the equally uncomfortable hot air.

I adjusted the coat.  This was taking way too long I thought.  I peeked under the car again and grabbed the white stick that was just a bit closer than the lipstick by the end, and in an arched sweeping motion got the lipstick to role towards me and grabbed it as it came from out of under the car.  I was so light headed.  This heat was killing me!  I tucked the lipstick into my jeans pocket and then realized the white stick was still in my hand.  I looked down to see what it was.  I could feel my head beginning to spin.  The heat and sitting up too fast were not being kind to me.  I squinted to get a closer look as I sat back on my coat heedless now of the burning asphalt.  My vision was beginning to tunnel.  It was a…. I turned it around.  It was a….  I brought it closer to my face as everything became blurry. I finally knew what it was.  Everything went black and as I began to feel myself fall. My last thought was -  It was a ….bone!?

642 THINGS TO WRITE ABOUT - THING NUMBER ONE: Finding a bone in a parking lot