Yucca Valley, California. I walk into a coffee shop and within five minutes I’m sitting across from a lady who’s reading my aura and numerological life path and accessing my Akashic Records.
Things are different out here on the fringes of the desert. The people are different, there’s something about the vibe out here. The dusty wind blasts against my car as I sit in a parking lot listening to Eddie Vedder. The birds fight through the incessant gale, battered and tossed against the sky. I am the palm trees standing into the sun, my fronds whipping back behind my face.
In the early afternoon I walk into a Dominoes and I’m greeted by an overworked-looking girl. “Welcome to Dominoes. How are you?”
“I’m doing great! How are you?”
She raises her eyebrows and sighs.
“Aw man,” I say. “One of those days?”
I chat with her for a few minutes until I get her to smile despite herself.
“How can I help you?” She finally asks.
“I was just wondering if you ever have burned pizzas or messed up orders that you might give away.”
“Yeah, all the time. Come back at like 5—that’s when our rush starts—and there’ll probably be something eventually.”
I’m back around 5. I wait while someone else places an order, and then I step up to the counter. The girl takes one look at me and smiles. “Hi! I remember you.” She makes a quick scan of kitchen and then calls into back, “Hey throw in a large pepperoni!”
“Wait—” I say. “What?”
“Yeah, we don’t have any extras right now. But don’t worry about it.”
“What! I mean, I have a book, I was planning to just sit around and read until maybe something—”
“Nah, don’t worry about it. I’ll just have them throw something in.”
So I sit down in stunned disbelief. 15 minutes later, another girl waves to me. “Sir? Your pizza is ready.”
My friend returns from a storage room. “Enjoy!”
I laugh. “Oh my god. I can’t believe you did this for me.”
She just smiles. “Have a beautiful night.”
I say “thank you” like twelve times, and then two minutes later I’m sitting out in my car eating a piping hot fresh pepperoni pizza that I got for free.