The smell of polish surrounded the chair where she sat awaiting the top coat on her pedicure. Shiny blue toes rested on the cushioned sliding stool that Tommy used to place himself in the proper position for the job. Today the conversation revolved around iphone apps. Marissa, Tommy’s wife, had the new iphone and she wanted Sandy to help hedr locate the webcam.
There were three ladies sitting side by side in various stages of the beautifying process, all with iphones. The sweet feminine smell of the heavy moisturizing cream used for the massage part of the process helped to balance the chemical smell of the polish remover. The salon was dimly lit with traces of gold in the landscape mural on the wall, in the decorative silk orchids and on Marissa’s hands and reading glasses.
Oh shit its 5:57. Sandy looked at the clock, checked her phone, and realized she had to get to the car, make it through traffic, 3 stop signs, and a signal, find a parking spot, and run all the way to the far end of the library to make it to her meeting, and all within the next 3 minutes.
I’m glad I ate those sliders at Alphy’s tavern she thought. Only $10 bucks and way too much food, but it did help to sop up the glass of malbec I ordered to wash it down. Pulled pork with BBQ sauce, the smoky tomatoey spicy sauce running over the edge of her palm, as she maneuvered her arm in an attempt to control it. The second a burger, probably Angus, Ok but not extraordinary. I prefer the flavor and texture of veggie burgers these days. The 3rd some sort of roast beef with mushrooms. The shrooms and small chunks of the meat scattering over the tabletop as she finished it off.
There were only a few customers at this time of day. There was some sort of sporting event on the video screens but the sound was turned down, and music filled the air with the magical lyrics and melodies of Landslide, but not the Stevie Nicks version. I needed some veggies and happily finished off the lettuce garnish that adorned the center of the plate.
As the barmaid brought the bill and Sandy watched the plate head towards the kitchen, she thought how obvious it was that the chef had been watching too many food network shows. The outer rim of the plate had dribbles of some sort of orange sauce with bits of parsley evenly placed around the entire rim. Technician, not artist. Not bad, but not a bite to crave the next day.
She had bought a 4 new pairs of sandals last week and had been wearing a different pair every day. As a result both feet showcased ugly red blisters. Tommy had put medicine on the wounds while he was finishing up with another customer and she was waiting for the polish to dry enough to leave.
So 3 minutes to go, Sandy thought as she watched Marissa help Tommy as he slid the funny disposable slippers on her feet, leaving the foam toe holders in place. She signed the debit receipt and dashed out of the salon. It was the day before the full moon. The sky was heavy with June gloom, a coastal weather condition that is similar to fog but normally above the ground, blocking direct sunlight and lending a taste of moisture to the air. Don’t put your shoes on yet, he shouted as she ran out the door, into the chill of the evening.
Backing out during a lull in traffic, Sandy made a right and headed for the library. It was still daylight and the air was fragrant with the smell of the ocean, and onion rings from the drive through on the next corner. She waited, third in line at the signal. The light changed and she made the turn, hearing the crunchy sound of the car rolling over the tracks as her bottom bounced upward, and back into the upholstered seat, she slammed on the brakes to avoid hitting the motorcyclist who appeared out of nowhere at 4 way stop.