So I'm waiting for an inspection at the Snappy Lube on New Bern Avenue when in walks a woman in a halter top and short shorts. She waves to the manager, who puts down his wrench and listens to this story:
"You look like the nicest person in the world," she tells him. "I've got five dollars in change, and I've been up and down this street, and nobody will give me a $5 bill for it. Will you do me the biggest favor ever?"
She looks a little haggard. There's a dark bruise on her lip, and her clothes, while revealing, look like she's slept in them for a few nights. But the manager says sure, if she'll just wait until he can finish balancing a set of tires.
While she's waiting, this woman spreads what must be 50 coins on the counter, pushing them into little piles. I can't see any pennies, but she appears to have been carrying at least 25 nickels in the pockets of these shorts.
After a while, the manager counts them all up and hands her a bill.
"Thank you so much," she tells him. "You've got the prettiest eyes." And off she goes.
I've got a few theories about what just transpired at the Snappy Lube, but I'm not sure where all the change came from, and why the woman needed paper money enough to spend an hour trying out every cash register in Southeast Raleigh. I'm glad the Snappy Lube was nice to this non-paying customer. I think I'll just, as Iris Dement put it, let the mystery be.