Saturday, August 12, 2006

New Bread

At 12.30am I was walking home. The end of Manhattan avenue was filled with the smell of baking bread. I slowed down to savor it and to look at the building. I’m not sure which side is the front because I’ve walked down the other block and it looks the same, a red and white mosaic sign above the door that says New Warsaw Bakery. I’ve noticed the bread in the many local bakeries. I like the way of life that includes buying one’s bread everyday. As I stand under the sign, I look down and there is an open door with a tall rack in front of it, and I can see a huge oven, many feet wide, and a conveyor that extends to the other end of the building. The conveyor ascends away from me and on on it are a couple hundred shining new oval loaves. There is an old man sitting below the belt far in the back and he sees me and gets up. I wasn’t sure if he was coming over, but I continued to stand and he appeared with a greeting and slid the rack away. I said, “it smells good here”. “Oh it must be me”, he smiled. I asked if I could buy one, and he said “now? ok, two dollars”. He reaches over to the belt and puts a gleaming loaf in a big brown paper sack like a grocery bag. As I walk home I tear off little bits of it to eat. The crust is salty and the inside is hot and fluffy. The bread is much bigger than I expected and as I carry it on my hip, it feels like a warm, heavy, living being.

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