A place of scattered beauties.
With the first table the dark haired woman places a hand on the green felt and I see the bracelets of flawed, plain colours laid out in overlapping loops. Someone realizes the tradition for me and I scrabble the stretch of elastic-bead from between the chains and charms on my ankle and scrape it off over my foot. Slipped onto my wrist, I smile at the woman fleetingly. Only I understand because my companion is fractious.
We pass through rows of columns of clay, wooden, shell and ceramic beads, arranged in pleasing patterns on bits of string and dangling from wooden structures. One woman has an open-front glass case with china charms lining the front and my friend bumps against the stand and slips her hand under the glass and grabs the tiny teapot-like blue and white ornament. I stop and stare and grab her arm and the woman notices and my companion hisses and I reprimand and my companion argues and the woman watches with dark, dark eyes and I put the charm back and apologise and smile nervously and continue to scold as I pull my friend away.
She protests against my actions, my admonishment, but suddenly there are eyes everywhere and while she complains about food and money and homelessness, and her brown waves swing from side to side as she eyes the trinkets and lets her fingers drag gently over the clicking, clacking, clattering beads, the image of a blue-green robed girl in a wigwam of tightly enclosing rods of firewood swims into my head, and I drag her on. This girl, who I think is myself, sits with her head on her knees and her arms around her up drawn legs and her hair falling across her face and hiding her features, surrounded by the memories of many small creatures. The dark wood is sharp and shiny. She is unable to get out. And this is what I concentrate on.