A day off on payday is so rare that I barely know how to spend it, knowing all that bills that have to be paid and the groceries that need to be eaten. But knowing ahead of time that I would have this day off and the long grueling past week made it easier to make the most of the hours of freedom.
Market Basket’s clearance rack was my main goal. The one in Danvers is always full and the majority of my canned vegetables comes from that rack. But the Generimart I work is also in Danvers and I’m not going to spend a day off going in the direction of the place I spent all week trying to get away from. So I went to the Market Basket in Salem which is up Highland Ave, assuming that any car accidents that took place would not happen right in front of me again like last time. But before I set out on my journey to buy cheap canned goods, I stopped for breakfast at Red’s Sandwich Shop. Not to be confused with the Red Line Café, which is still great place to have breakfast, but they weren’t open that early and I wanted to get a head start before the school rush.
As I was sitting at the counter waiting for my ham and cheese omelette, I got to talking with the guy sitting two stools down from me. He had been all over New England, shipping auto parts and he was feeling the weight of the long hours on the road. Coffee was the only thing keeping him going and he was actually pretty interesting. Especially when he told me this story:
“I moved here sixteen years ago. My neighbor started telling people that I looked like Charles Manson.”
“Wait, wasn’t still he in jail at the time?” I asked.
“Yeah, he was in jail. But the police came around to check out my license plate, then they saw my DMV photo, and suddenly my place was surrounded. They weren’t taking any chances.”
The story might seem like one of those fish that keep getting bigger and god knows that I’ve heard some whoppers since moving here. But his tale was plausible for a couple of reasons. This is Salem, Massachusetts and I’ve lived here for four years. People in this town are historically known for overreacting. If you’re not one of the wealthier people to move to Witch City then you are automatically “suspicious” for some reason. My own experiences include someone seeing me carrying a laundry bag, in the direction of a Laundromat and assuming I was homeless because I walked back and forth, with the laundry bag in tow both ways. And I do not put it past anyone in this town to see a guy with even the barest resemblance to someone they saw in the news and jump a conclusion based on nothing.
Oh well, he seemed like a nice guy anyway. That’s why I like eating breakfast at diners and sitting at the counter, because you never know who you’re going to talk to or what’s going to happen.
A little later I will post about my slightly less pleasant experience in regards to Taco Bell’s breakfast menu.