Gold Studs

She has round gold studs in her ears that remind me of my first pair of earrings. They are the kind of studs they put through your earlobe with the gun at Claire’s while you’re sitting in a window, holding a stuffed animal and crying. She is wearing dark blue converse and and blue jeans. You can tell it is autumn just by looking at her because the cool season layering is in full force – a white and black patterned shirt under a dark brown corduroy shirt, under a dark blue cardigan. She plays with her hands in her lap, lightly running her nails over the back of her right hand, not hard enough to scratch, then she cracks the knuckles on her left hand. On her right wrist is a black band that I believe is for a watch. She has a small brown leather purse strapped across her chest. Her hair is too blond to be light brown and too dark to blond, but it is a beautiful mass of corkscrew curls that extend almost a half a foot in either direction. Her face is smooth, devoid of any real emotion or thoughts, her cheeks sprinkled with freckles. She is on the train with three other women, one of whom sits next to her after the seat becomes available. They speak in an easy mix of French and English, sliding between them without conscious effort. I think she has noticed my frequent glances so I try to keep my gaze to my phone.

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