When Humans Make Places Talk: Everyday Magic, Day 425

Traveling New Hampshire by foot, bus and car, I’ve noticed signs not so much of the times, but of someone trying to make the inanimate animate. At a gift shop in Portsmouth that tells rubber chickens, fake dog poop, and nose pencil sharpeners, in the walkway leading to another store that sells jewelry and scarves, is this sign: “We are together but separate…..I mean we are seeing other people. Pay for that here.”

An hour or so west (“Everything in New Hampshire is an hour away from everything else,” George tells me), I get to the elevator in my hotel to find the inside of the elevator door telling me, with some embarrassment, no doubt, “Please excuse my appearance. I’m getting a facelift this week!” Even I feel a little embarrassed for the elevator, but mostly for having to wear this sign that equates its giddy shame with something one of the Gabor sisters might have said.

I prefer the signs not written by human hands, but by leaves, rain, cold nights and changing days, such as this one somewhere between Northern and Southern NH (also an hour’s drive).