All the store fronts had their hours posted but it didn’t matter because I couldn’t for the life of me remember what day it was. The names shrank away when I focused on the letters and returned no results. And with that, I felt free. Only the sounds of the taxi drivers in their electric cars slowing to a hiss, sounds of people settling in. Christmas lights twinkling, tall apartment buildings, more soft light. Thrust away from ourselves again, to some alien neighborhood in a foreign country: Canada. Vancouver Island. Boxing Day, hit or miss finding an open store or restaurant. All the locals and tourists compressed down to this, a corner pizzeria. Sitting at the bar ordering another take-out pizza, the kids wolfing down the first, sending me back out. Watching the staff break everything down for the day. Back-flushing the heads on the Italian espresso machine, a La Marzocco, the same as the ones Starbucks originally had. Good equipment, maybe the best, but like good Italian cars, finicky. Not scalable across hundreds or thousands of stores. Wanting to ask them about the machine but not wanting to be that guy who lapses into his own narrative, so I just kept quiet and watched. Carried the pizza back to our rental, gone in five minutes. Everyone sprawled out by the fire watching Sherlock Holmes. Trying to get the heater to work. Trying to find the cork screw. The thread, to this life. If it’s true, we are bound by the same colored string tied around our finger that has joined and delivered us to this place. If you believe in that, in folklore and legend.