Precious Cargo

The word of the week is EXCHANGE and I will admit this one is a little weird.   I went with the definition of exchange, as an exchange of goods.  I have to admit, this is not my favorite six, and sometimes you write something and just go, ya, okay, that’s odd.  This is that story.


There is something about using the barter system that makes me feel like a peasant in the Middle Ages, a drug dealer or a spy.

As I stand on the darkened street corner, waiting for the guy with the goods to make it to the exchange, I think that today we are leaning more towards drug dealer.

He finally shows on foot, looking around furtively as he crinkles the top of the folded paper lunch bag with one hand, and is that what I think it is?

He asks if I have the stuff, and I pull the plastic covered pages from the inside of my jacket, hesitant to expose them to the low drizzle starting, and startle when he wretches them from my grasp, shoving the paper bag into my flailing hand. 

He fingers through them quickly, as I desperately try to get into the bag, relief forming as the delivery seems unaffected, exactly as I wanted, but when I go to say so he is already walking away, so I cradle my precious paper bag in my arms and speed walk home.

Finally there, I delicately lift my precious out, looking into the curious eyes of a perfectly adorable kitten, worth every comic book, and I wonder what possessed the man to put her in a rolled-up paper lunch bag…


For anyone wondering about the paper bag, this one is actually based on reality.  When I bought my first cat, the man at the pet shop put it in a lunch bag, rolled it up and handed it to me. I was three, and the confusion about how the cat was going to breath as I took the bag is one of my first memories.