Lunch Box

I saw it when I gained the hill. It was sitting in a neat pile on the bench just below the crest of the little hill I walk down to get to Llanbadarn Road. There was a chocolate bar, a fruit drink in a reusable plastic container and something that looked like cereal in a tupperware box. A straw bag that had probably been used to carry the lunch was lying on the ground next to it. What had happened? Why had someone placed it on the bench in readiness and gone? I hope that they are OK. There was a fastidiousness to it, a care that touched me. I understand that pre-planning, that cupboard or drawer full of tupperware.

Town was quiet again. The Pelican Bakery was whirring as it does when I go past but little smell of bread being baked. I saw the woman with the bag as I walked towards the castle but she was sans bag. And the milkman in his van, the one who looks like Bruce Springsteen drove past. But that was all. Oh, and the man I see in his kitchen intent on his computer screen was actually reading a book in front of it this morning. It looked like a children’s book, shiny and colourful. And I’ve been meaning to say that I noticed that one of the daffodils in the Mind’s window boxes had flowered. They left the premises a couple of years ago, though no one has taken it over. And the window boxes had been forgotten. And yet, the daffodil still flowered, regardless. Nice.

He worries about us sunbathing, that is, taking in a little sun in the Col Fields. It’s just anxiety about what the rules are. It’s hard to know what the right thing to do is. We keep to ourselves up there, on our perch. What harm can it do?

By Ellen Bell

Artist and writer currently living in Aberystwyth.