Last week I had yet another opportunity when my oldest daughter and I stopped by our local driver services facility. Now that’s a people-watcher’s paradise. One step inside and you’re “trapped” in a giant room full of strangers.
“Take a number.”
Emily and I glanced at the paper … number 50.
Across the room, a lady’s voice yelled above the noise. “Number 38?”
Oh well, I thought. May as well make ourselves comfortable. I took a seat and checked out my surroundings.
Sitting nearby, a petite grandma adjusted her glasses and squinted at some paperwork. I pictured her driving, perched on a pile of pillows and straining to see over the wheel.
Standing in line, a bald guy stroked his long, braided beard. Interestingly, the stretchy rubber band he’d chosen for his beard looked much like the ones I find all over my house.
Across the room, a teenage boy flipped through a Rules of the Road handbook. Every now and then, he’d run his fingers through a mop of greasy hair and tug at the back of his jeans, which relentlessly slid down his backside.
A few seats over, a young boy with bright red sneakers sat by his mom and kicked his legs back-and-forth. When he grew tired of that, he turned around, propped his chin on the back of his chair and stared at Mr. Braided Beard.
And then there was the young lady sitting next to me. I loved watching her. In fact, I've been watching her for years.
I've watched this girl go through fifteen years worth of milestones. And today was another.
We stood to our feet and stepped up to the counter. As Emily finished her eye test, I noticed a box of pens on the counter. I took three.
“Mom!” She looked at me like I’d committed a crime.
“What? They’re free – and I need a couple extra for my purse.
“This is a government building,” she said with a smile. “There are cameras everywhere. You’re probably being watched.”
Probably, I thought. Seems like wherever you go these days, somebody’s always watching.