For a lot of reasons that aren’t worth getting into at the moment, most people here (including me) pay their bills by going to an outlet that’s equipped for bill-paying (could be a pharmacy, grocery store, post office, random kiosco) and paying them in cash. After finally getting hold of the phone company to explain an extra charge on my bill, I ran out to pay that and my gas bill this morning, thinking I’d get a jump on things by arriving just when the post office was opening at 10, but I wasn’t the only one with that idea! I was 11th in line outside the front door, but managed to get through the line and back home in half an hour (though while I was waiting in line I realized I had left one other unpaid bill at home; luckily it’s not due for a few weeks). On the way back, I passed my neighborhood police officer, who usually hangs out in front of the grocery store on my block, walking down the street towards his post (and not really from a direction where there’s a cafĂ© nearby) carrying a little ceramic cup of coffee.


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