Last Monday I was stepping smart through the Deep with my new long-handled shovel gripped in my left hand. The tempered steel blade shaft was clanking, not incidentally, against my wedding ring. I was fretting about the strength of the theoretical argument I just finished writing and my feet may have been moving but my mind wasn’t there. A cap wearing, middle aged, rangy man with about three days of whiskers caught my eye. He gave my shovel a significant look and said “Hey now, as soon as you’re done burying your old man, you give me a call.” He used all of his teeth in a smile.
I stumbled, yanked out of my thoughts. What? Heh? I replayed the last minute in my head. My eyes got wide as I figured it out and I started hooting and laughing, because I am that cool.
“Oh, you know I will,” I told him. It was an easy promise as I hadn’t really ever planned to dig my husband’s grave.
I paid for the shovel and headed out to the car. A pale blue Roush Mustang was parked out front – illegally – and I paused to snap a shot of it, because really, who doesn’t love a great muscle car?
The Mustang’s engine revved and it rumbled toward me as I took the picture. It turned the corner and the passenger window whirred down. “Remember, you get that burying done, you call me!” The engine roared and the car disappeared in a cloud of late season pulverized rock salt.
I thought about it as I tossed the shovel into the back of the MCS. I eyed the sharp gleaming metal blade. I considered that pretty blue muscle car. Well, maybe…