We were walking to the hotel where there is the good restaurant and the many televisions so that we could watch the Olympics. I always get stopped on the street because maybe they assume that I carry all the money or because they think I will be protective of anyone trying to speak to ‘the lady’ beside me. The grown boy who stopped me this time was short and thick and round-faced and too-much smil...
He spoke in that thick local accent that is so hard to understand because of the way it swallows the ends of words so that they sound like a firing of short, terse syllables. I was walking home from the gym and I had a podcast coming through my earphones so that his question did not register at first.
Often when I walk someplace I get stopped at least once or twic...
‘Look at these guys,’ I said. ‘They look like they’re right out of the Hurt Locker.’
There were two of them, short and stalky, and they wore thick, black protective equipment over dark blue fatigues. The protective padding was at least two centimeters thick in every place and in their shortness and for the padding that forced their legs apart as they strode, they looked to me like trolls.
‘You can wait in the line at the store or I can have someone give you quick service right now,’ he said.
His tone was labored as he motioned to the store where a few customers were queued and he smiled broadly at the end of his sentence. He wore a dress shirt and slacks and sweater vest with a pin that identified him as a ‘Customer Service Representative’.