Ladies with Hats
1970s. The St. Mary’s bus comes to halt at Eaton’s, where the proper ladies shop. I rub the condensation from the window, exposing a tableau now etched in echoic memory, triggered these days by, of all things, the hissing of air brakes.
Three old ladies… with hats.
Hats of felt or velvet; decorated with feathers, rhinestones and beads. Hats that matched clutches or purses. Perfect accessories for coats of fur, wool, or cashmere. Not utilitarian, but the kind of hats that make the statement “I’m a lady. I’m going shopping”.
I knew in my heart at that moment that I would someday recall this exact moment in time, and miss it dearly. Today is that day.