my500words day 12 : An Extraordinary Day

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An Extraordinary Day

I awoke, wide eyed and sleepless, feeling optimistic and ready to challenge the day.

Unusually alert, I dressed, went downstairs, made myself a coffee, and carried it to the study, my nostrils twitching as they inhaled that unmistakably aroma.

I sat down, entered the password on the computer screen and opened up the word processor.

Taking a swig of coffee with one hand, I started typing with the other, even before I’d put the coffee back down on the desk.

I was still feeling the excitement from yesterday and vivid memories leaped into my mind. I was so excited to write the details of the extraordinary day I had experienced yesterday.

*

It had all started rather mundanely by a trip to the local supermarket.

My wife and I had left earlier than usual, because we had run out of fruit for our usual breakfast, and had decided to combine the weekly shop, with a visit to the supermarket restaurant, to grab an English Breakfast before doing the shopping.

It was only just after eight when we arrived, and the restaurant was almost empty. We appeared to be amongst the first clients.

I ordered breakfast and took two Americanos over to my wife ,who had reserved our favourite seats  away from the humming and blowing of the air conditioning, and a little hidden from the other customers.

We made our way to the breakfast buffet and exchanged the ticket for two hot plates, holding them between the folds of our napkins to avoid serious injury.

The idea of a hot breakfast was unfortunately much more appealing than the breakfast itself, and we picked our way amongst greasy sausages and far too crispy bacon, grudgingly adding a spoonful of powdered scrambled egg here and a plum tomato there.

While my wife put two slices of toasts through the toaster I carried the two plates back to our table. My wife was pulling faces from her position beside the toaster and held up a new finger each time she put the slices of bread back through the toaster. She exchanged a few words with a member of staff and came back to our table with only slightly warmed bread and margarine in place of butter. She said it was all they had and I thought that it was pretty amazing that in a 24hour supermarket with thousands of articles, that they were unable to provide portions of real butter in their restaurant.

Breakfast was the usual forgettable experience but at least the coffee was hot and heady and caffeine hit the spot.

Time to shop.

Mind on autopilot, I took the magic scan as you shop wand as my wife ventured back out through the doors to get the trolley.

We were so excited to start our shop and headed for the fruit counter. Coming round the corner with a bunch of bananas to weigh on the scales, we bumped into a woman, her face was familiar. She looked at us; we looked at her and then we all laughed and fell into the usual supermarket conversations.

How was she, had she already been on holiday, what were her plans for the weekend? All the usual, slightly embarrassing, social interactions that occur between acquaintances in supermarket aisles.

We got through unscathed, said our awkward goodbyes and made a dash towards the fresh vegetables.

I looked at my wife enquiringly and she smiled and told me that it was a woman that worked in the local beauty salon.

Neither of us had seen her for ages but my wife is better with faces than I am.

Two aisles further on, we headed to grab some eggs and as I scanned them and put them in the trolley, a guy greeted me with a big smile and I shook his hand vigorously and asked him how he’d been keeping and what was he up to?

Once again I didn’t have the slightest clue as to who he was and the same scenario played out once more. I cast pleading furtive glances at my wife, but she just played along until we got to the, see you around, take cares, that closed the conversation and sent us all in our predefined directions.

My wife chuckled at my discomfort and put me out of my misery by informing me that it was the guy who had changed our garage door last year.

This was turning out to be a very challenging day.

We loaded our trolley with the rest of our weekly shop and headed to the scan and shop checkout.

With at least 50 metres to go, a bearded guy pulled out of aisle 43, and grabbed my hand, turned to a woman that was with him and told her that we were the new couple in the village.

This time my wife looked at me with a slightly bewildered expression and I thought, here we go again, but now we’re really flying blind. With freshly acquired social skills I managed to wing it to the usual conclusion and we all shook hands, smiled, and parted.

It had been an extraordinary morning and the shopping experience was even more intense than usual.

*

It has been an interesting experience, as a writer, to relate an unexciting, fairly unimaginative day, in a slightly different way, and I hope you enjoyed at least some of my story.

Ordinary things happen in real life, as they do in fiction, but a good writer can transform the everyday into something special when he or she wishes, or at least portray them in a way that contrasts with the more salient points of the story and in so doing, renders them extraordinary.

This simple exercise has taught me a lot and I think that was the whole point of the challenge. Read about the my500words challenge here.

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