In fact, most days it's me turning out lights no one else thinks to, most likely bathroom ones.
And some days people might actually like me not to walk into the room at all, knowing I may nag them to pick up dropped socks, old popsicle sticks or cheese-stick wrappers.
Though this time, I wasn't walking into a room; just into the small shack of our local farm stand. For my weekly purchase of apples, and pears and greens. In my house-clothes as I hadn't been out all day, and what the heck, who would notice me at a farm stand in my gerbil sweater (they're favorite to climb around in) and dirty muddy winter boots even though the spring sun finally had surfaced again.
He did – the one who lit up. "SO good to see you!" He grinned. A toothless one I might add. He was old enough to be my father if he were still alive, his face leathered from years in the sun. A pack of cigarettes hung out of his top shirt pocket.
He was unpacking a carton of organic apples. Other times, I'd seen him sweeping out the donkey stall. (Yes, this stand has a miniature donkey and one who bites. Plus two goats and a peacock.)
He couldn't stop grinning. "How are you?"
Look, let's face it. As a-stay-at-home-forty-something-perimenopausal mom who most days is shuttered inside a chaotic messy house, I'm easily flattered. He worked at the stand, and last I'd been in there was at Christmas for our tree. He'd trimmed the trunk and tied the tree to the top of my van. "Anything for you, Gorgeous." Then he'd stepped back to take one last good look at me. "Really. You could be a model."
"Sure. In those boots and that coat, and that hair...look at you. Just beautiful."
Back then, I must have had somewhere nice to go or was coming from. Because I guess I had been wearing nice boots and a nice coat. And done something with my frizzy nest?
At best these days, I can feel like some "gorgeous" insect he might unearth from some plant he'd be potting for their spring sale. But today I left with my bag of fruits and greens, shuffling along in my dirty old snow boots feeling, well, beautiful.