The old one dressed for the day. He was going to visit the moneylenders he had talked to a bronze-skinned woman named Cherie. She talked to him about some restructuring of his accounts to give him more interest on his money. The old one asked Cherie if she would have a cup of coffee with him at the food court and then they could talk about his account then.
He dressed in his finest and made his way out, into the cold January air. The grey sullen skies had blotted out the sun’s warming rays for days; he zipped his coat, and began his trek, to the moneylenders.
When he entered the moneylenders and saw Cherie, she waved and smiled a very warm smile he approached her and he stood silently across the teller’s counter from her. When she talked to him, on the phone, she was pleasant and her voice was as warm as a fresh baked biscuit, but in person, she seemed unapproachable, and cold as it was outside. He felt the distance between them was much, much, wider than the teller’s counter that stood between them. She said she was busy; however, she would have someone else help him.
Cherie called another woman to help the old one. This new woman, led him to her cubicle, she introduced herself and offered her hand for him to shake she swept her arm in the direction of a comfortable chair and offered him a seat then she began the sales pitch of all things a credit card. Now he had learned from experiences that a credit card was something that if incorrectly used could be a very dangerous thing. However, the trusty old debit card in his pocket was all that he needed at this time.
He told the woman that he wanted to split his money between his checking, debit account and savings account. She looked surprised, and taken aback how dare he turn down a credit card. She picked up some printed forms and reluctantly filled out the transfer and as they talked, he told her of his writing.
He gave her something to read, she read it, and smiled and read some more and she smiled again. She looked him in the face and told him he had written something very special and was very good, she added, it made her think and search her soul.
She told him that when she was young, she was sad a lot, so she wrote to feel better. She wrote mainly because of the grief for her terminally ill brother, he later died and when he died, her writing also died. She found she no longer had the inspiration to write about what she felt.
The old one knew what she meant, when the soul is in chaos, and emotions are raw with hurt, and pain, the soul tries everything to make sense of the pain. Then the brain tries to process it into something manageable. Grief, manages the pain and emotions far better and faster than the hand can put words on paper. The hand stops, the pain stops, and the emotions heal, when death, steals away the source of the hurt, but grief still exist and turns those hurts and pains into harmless memories, and those memories never leave the soul.
He told the woman how he begins to write when he can’t seem to write anything down on paper and he told her, she should try it, but he knew it was just idle chatter; the young woman had other things that interested her more than writing idle thoughts.
The old one thanked the young woman and left, he ventured to the food court and bought himself a sandwich, and while he sat there eating, he began to think and clouds of melancholy began to build shadows around him, and he became sad, sad for the woman and her long dead brother, and for himself.
He found a vacant table he took out his pencil and his pad and wrote. It was strange, that he could process the pain, the sadness, and could write faster than his grief could process the pain, sadness, and sorrow.
He had piled and placed so much pain and sorrow on his soul, he had given up any hope of survival. Nevertheless, he was surviving and he would live to tell about it someday.
The old one looked at his reflection in the storefront glass he saw a tired old lonely broken man sitting alone among hundreds of people. The people who passed him by were too busy with their own worries that none stopped, all of them scurried on to fulfill their own destinies. The old one’s destiny, if he had one, he knew not what it was, nor where to find it.
The words, ceased their march from his brain to the page, and then they slowed to a stop and he gave a sigh. He looked in the window at his reflection and he watched as his soul died a little more today, just as it had done thousands of times before.
The old one collected his pen and pad, he zipped up his coat, and he looked around one more time and then he began his trek back into the cold from whence he started.