There Was Only One Chair

There was only one chair.  On the back of the chair was a light blue jacket and on the seat of the chair was a styrofoam coffee cup.  6:30 in the morning, at the YMCA indoor track.  There were two ladies and one couple walking around the track in cirlces.  Who put their coffee cup on the seat? I want to sit down. How insensitive. What were they thinking.

I looked at the people walking to see who looked like a coffee drinker.

I composed haiku poems as I walked around the track. 18 laps equals one mile.

only one chair

toss the coffee and jacket

sitting on the floor

Then I saw a woman wearing stretch polyester pants limp towards the chair. She took a sip from the cup,  then set it down in the middle of the chair and continued to walk. There was a hook for her jacket, and a window ledge for her coffee,  she could have used. Perhaps she is like an animal that marks their territory by spraying. She had marked off the chair as her domain with her coffee and jacket.  I didn’t really want to sit down, but I was irritated that she wasn’t sharing. Now, I know she didn’t irritate me, I chose to be irritated.  And I could have asked her to move her coffee so I could sit down.

I kept walking in circles counting  syllables on my fingers, 5-7-5.

Then she left.

I kept walking.

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10 responses to “There Was Only One Chair

  1. This kind of stuff irritates me, too. This is how I am starting to think of this stuff I wonder if God isn’t using it to break through to something deeper in me. Like He is trying to get me to see the person beyond the irritation, to see the person like He does. Part of His changing me from the inside out. I just had a pray about it incident that had to do with irritation here at my vacation hotel so this insight is fresh.
    Did you write another haiku? Is your friend Heidi on the mend?

  2. I wonder what she thought when you took a picture of her territory.

    • My thoughts exactly! You probably looked weird taking a picture of the chair and the coffee 🙂

      • Probably not as weird as I looked taking pictures of my feet walking around the track. 🙂 The pictures were for the haiku I wrote about praying as I walk. I didn’t put the picture up with the poem, as I thought the poem should stand alone.

    • I tried to take it after she had passed the chair 🙂 I wonder what she thought as well. I will have to see what happens the next time I walk early.

  3. And my thoughts went to, “Who leaves just one chair? Is it to discourage people resting at the gym? What’s that about?

    I like the push to see the person behind the annoying behavior. Just what I’m trying to do in my efforts to respond to people from a place of empathy. (But sometimes it’s hard!)

    • Yes, next time I want to talk to the chair lady. She did have a slight limp. Maybe the chair was her security. Marking it for her use before another walker put their cup on it.
      I will ask the front desk for more chairs next time. There are a lot of seniors who walk. Yeah, who leaves one chair.

  4. Did she take her coffee with her when she left or did she throw it away? I find it fascinating what you put in your writing and the things you leave out. I’m always intrigued with the little details you reference in your writing. You are very observant!

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