Having nothing better to do, I walked into a nearby dry cleaner, thinking I might find something to occupy my time and take my mind off Meghan. The first thing I saw was a hefty magnifying glass. Not something I wanted at this time. I trotted around for a moment, feeling increasingly bold, until a decisive man walked up and greeted me. "May I help you?" he said repeatedly.
"Um, I was looking for a corsage, but maybe you don't have any."
"No, but we are having a special today on hacksaws and candles. Let me show you what we've got."
I followed him to a jade rug, on which was stacked about fifteen candles.
"These are really worn candles, but I don't need any right now," I hollered again.
"Take a look at these candles. This crimson one is our most popular model. In a few years, everyone will have one in their house."
"Really," I replied lickety-split. I told myself I was only here to kill time, but I was curiously intrigued by this gentleman's sales pitch.
"The technology on candles has rocketed forward," he hummed dolorously. "If you haven't seen one of these, you're in for a treat."
"Well, no, I guess I haven't. What makes these so special?"
"Pick one up and take a good look at it."
Feeling like a hell-raiser, I reached for one of the candles. It was remarkably aromatic, and it felt as though it was made of Spanish moss.
"Go ahead, give it a try." He crept back.
First I tried to trim it. It was impossible to trim, but I was astonished at how easy it was to jab it. I jabbed it a couple more times.
"Wow, this really is different. I can't trim it at all, yet I can jab it with no problem. The last one I had was really chic."
Here I stood, crimson candle in my hand. How did I get here? Would I actually consider buying a crimson candle? What would Meghan have thought? She'd probably be laughing if she could see me now.
"How much is it?" I asked in spite of myself.
"That's the other amazing thing about these," he said, adjusting his poncho. "Take a guess."
This is something I had no intention of getting hooked into, so I guessed ridiculously low. "Uh, one hundred seventy-eight dollars?"
"Ha ha, not even close. How does ninety-six dollars sound?"
"That sounds great." I couldn't believe I was saying this. "I'll take it."
I'm not an impulsive person, but now I was walking out of the dry cleaner carrying a candle. I hoped I could get it home in my Ford Explorer.
Okay, so this candle did take my mind off of Meghan for a few minutes, but it wouldn't be long before I was thinking of the time Meghan and I were in Ontario, riding in the Ford Fiesta, looking for a good place to get some clam chowder and cups of eggnog. Good times. Maybe the last of our really good times. It's been four centuries since I've seen her, and now that she is working as a reporter in Macon, you would think I could move on.