Tarps draped over tents taking up parking space next to a few cars underneath an elevated highway onramp

Adaptation to a problem is still a problem. It’s not mine, but I’m having to change things a bit. Other stuff isn’t changing, and that’s another ongoing problem.

A neighborhood town square plaza with brightly colored chairs near and under an umbrella on a sunny day

It looks like I might be spending a little more time away from my desk. It’ll feel weird but mostly good. Standing around outside a restroom: weird. Running into the competition: less weird but still good but also weird. I’m more used to reading them than seeing them in person.

A car odometer showing a vehicle’s range and distance traveled since its last gas tank top-off

I have to park somewhere different now for reasons, which meant birds lit my car up in its for-now spot. Off I go to get gas at the station with the automatic car wash, even though the fill-up is 50 cents a gallon more than I usually pay.

A wide angle view of a red and blue lit theater ballroom with well dressed people dancing and sitting at tables under a large multi bulb chandelier

In the room today, I obviously wasn’t a dad or a daughter and I didn’t dance, but nobody seemed to mind. Maybe I looked like somebody’s suited and booted cool uncle until a young man came up to me and asked if I had an adapter he could use to charge his phone. I did, which isn’t cool so much as convenient. He returned it, which was cooler: tech support uncle for the win.

A small black cat, with its eyes closed and a paw hiding part of its face, lying on its side atop a light gray quilt

I should have spent the day in bed, but I didn’t have to go very far so I had that going for me. The medicines I picked up have kicked in pretty well too so there’s that. The biggest stuff can wait.

A vehicle on a highway among several other vehicles in daylight.

Out of the corner of my eye, cruelty came on at cruising speed in the lane to my left and the light wasn’t kind as it passed me by on the interstate and headed west beyond my upcoming exit.

A dozen people gathered around two wooden tables in a large white painted room

It’s not like the moon is still in front of the sun, but it still feels like something unearthly and uncanny has happened, is still happening. We hang out and offer up our hails, if not our farewells, and we wait for whatever new sense of normalcy we didn’t order to show its face.

A blurry image of a wide empty early morning sidewalk outside a 24-hour donut shop.

What brings me back to the scene of somebody else’s crime? Maybe it’s the memory of how things first tasted 6 months ago. Maybe it’s their flavor on my tongue now that things are about to change again. The hitch in my work week and the grace that comes with practicing gratitude don’t hurt either.

An oval wooden table laden with balloons, a happy birthday greeting spelled out on pieces of paper bannered to string, and white paper boxes full of cupcakes.

I was taken by surprise this afternoon when some of my coworkers began wandering over towards the corner of the room where succulent little cupcakes had materialized in honor of a birthday. Better day unlocked, even by a degree of separation.

The moon appears in front of the sun’s lower right quarter during a partial solar eclipse as seen through polarized glasses.

From the driver who showed me a pair of glasses in his glove box to the museum staffer t-shirt lauding the virtues of inquiry, it turned out not to be about the heavenly bodies appearing to rub shoulders over our heads so much as the people on the ground beside us, stopping to take it all in.