where my mind wanders




My car slows as it approaches a stoplight. I take this opportunity to allow my mind to become engulfed with my surroundings: the bright fierce red of the traffic light, the brilliant blue sky with its specs clouds, and the mass of hurried people. The four corners of the intersection are filled with people who are preoccupied with their fast-paced lives to notice the little things, such as animals and anxious cars awaiting the traffic light. My thoughts vigorously put all of the information that my mind has gathered from the intersection to order.
My mind eagerly involves itself by engulfing my surroundings and giving them some meaning. The office workers, too busy to pay attention to the life that surrounds them catch my eyes first. They seem to be apathetic robots, preprogrammed to start at one location and go to another. They pay little attention to any detail unless it has to do with them. I chuckle at the automated behavior of these robots.
Once my mind has come to a conclusion about the workers, this small little squirrel sitting on its hind legs eating a juicy apple catches my attention. Sitting there on the corner of the intersection, minding its own business, the squirrel devours the apple. Once done with its apple the squirrel throws the core to the side and remains there for a bit. My mind temporarily comes out of its lapse and I wonder if this squirrel is analyzing me, too. The neck of the squirrel seems to be a second hand on a clock, tick tock. It moves a bit then stops, then again moves continuing until it can no longer move its neck.
A 1996 Ford Mustang next to my car revs the engine and my mind loses interest in the squirrel and moves to the cars next to and opposite of me. There are two cars, a BMW and an old pickup truck; the name is not visible. You can see the eagerness of each car; the impatience in these cars is more than of child the day before their birthday. These cars remain perpendicular to the lanes but are moving freely to their destination and seem to be mocking the stationary cars at the red light. The BMW reacts by slowly creeping up as close to the edge of the intersection as possible. The person must be a worker type, one who needs to get somewhere disregarding everything else. On the other hand the old pickup does not constantly inch up closer it remains idle and appears to be content with its still state.
Suddenly the light changes to a bright green. This relieves all of the tension in the BMW and the Mustang. Immediately the BMW launches off with incredible speed and the Mustang makes a right turn. Then the pickup and I slowly pull away from our spot. The squirrel startled with this sudden change runs under a nearby bush. The workers who were left behind by the change in light color feel a sense of malice for those who were able to cross. As I continue driving my mind returns from its journey. I think of all that has happened and realize that I can only look forward to the next stoplight.




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