Nancy could hardly see the traffic signal in front of her through the tears in her eyes. She couldn’t believe what she had just done –leaving her job like that. For twenty years she’d been at the same job, doing the same thing, cashing the same check. She was truly out of her element now.
The man in the next car over was playing his steering wheel like a drum in time with the song on his radio. Every so often he would extend his arm out to hit an imaginary cymbal –his long hair bouncing off his right shoulder as he did. Nancy watched him for a bit. He seemed free from pain and suffering, as if he hadn’t a concern in the world.
Nancy felt as if this young man was the luckiest person on the planet.
As the light turned from red to green she felt an urge to follow him. She turned her directional signal on and tried to nose her way in, but it was rush-hour and nobody was in the mood to be gracious. The young man’s red sedan sped off into the distance not knowing that it had left behind a sad, unemployed woman who desperately wanted to attach herself to something new.
Nancy pulled into a local convenient store parking lot. She turned her car off and rested her head on the steering wheel. She knew that this little episode shouldn’t have bothered her as much as it did.
Nancy was dealing with the sudden reality that, just like this young man in the red car, life will not slow down to wait for her.
After arriving back at home, she stayed only for a few minutes. She called her daughter and gave her instructions for paying her monthly bills. She also told her not to worry and that she would call every 2 weeks. Then Nancy went upstairs and packed a medium-sized suitcase.
Just before she went out the door she grabbed a travel book out of her bookcase. She had purchased the book for herself as a birthday present 5 years ago -mostly because she liked the picture on the cover.