America Day 51 – Small Town

We are at the local cinema. It has the word “cinema” written on the outside which is how we can tell its a cinema. It’s right next to our hotel.

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We walk past the big neon sign that says “Open” and into the lobby. We are curious. A woman is counting cash. She doesn’t look up. Her head is in counting, perhaps. We wait. “Hello?” we eventually venture when we understand that we are far less important than the maths. I understand that. She pauses, holds a figure in her head, looks up.

“Hi, we were just wondering what you were showing. Do you have a brochure?” She looks at us blankly. “A timetable?” I try. Blank. “A piece of paper that has the films you are screening and times?” She looks at us both, silent.

She has heard the question. Time expands. Five seconds? Maybe ten? All that exists is Claire and I, this woman, and the gears turning in her brain. I look into her eyes: SFX THE TICKING AND DINGING OF A CLOCK. LFX STROBE. PROJECTIONS OF MANDALAS AND EYES. MUSIC FROM A SITAR. A BACKWARDS CAT EXTRUDES FROM RINGO STARR’S LEFT EYEBALL. THE CLOCK GROWS LARGER. GHANDI SHAKES A COCKROACH FROM HIS FOOT AGAIN. THE COCKROACH HAS A MILKSHAKE. THE MILKSHAKE IS ALL THE COLOURS OF THE WORLD BUT LIGHT. THE LIGHT OF A PROJECTOR. A PPPRROJJECTOOOR. A PRoJector.

“We don’t have one.”

Pause.

“You could go online. There’s a Facebook page. I don’t know what it’s called. It isn’t up to date anyway.”

Pause.

“I think we’ll be showing The Addams Family and Maleficent Wednesday and Thursday. One of the projectors is broken. It’s hard to tell what’ll happen.”

“What about Friday?” “Oh. We haven’t thought about *newthought* Friday.”

We are in small town Indiana. It’s $4 for an expensive beer. $2 if you’re good with a PBR.

I’m glad of the chance to relax, frankly. It’s been full on and to suddenly be in a place where we don’t know the meaning of hurry is wonderful, even if I have no idea what will be screening at the cinema and nor does the cinema.

We had a day off today thank God. None of us have adjusted to the time difference having come three hours East. It’s always harder to the East. But at least we didn’t have to get up and be clever and helpful for students at this tiny but effective liberal arts college in Indiana with the jetlag. We had Tuesday off. I’m getting ready for bed now and it’s actually the normal bedtime. This blog is still late, but that’s mostly to do with the fact that the deadline was more familiar. I took my foot off the gas.

This town of Greencastle is actually surprisingly vibrant. I found a shop which sells all the things I like. I ended up with a wallet, an oven glove and some beard oil. The beard has officially reached “monstrosity” status, and I’m not allowed to shave it or cut my hair as I use both of them to make Belch as unruly as possible…

Fun and games.

Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

3 thoughts on “America Day 51 – Small Town”

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