Shelly took off her jacket, shook it, and laid it down on the grass. She sat, looked around, the unzipped her backpack to take out the food.

Overhead, the clouds were dark, the air heavy.

A ziplock container holding a sandwich – chicken and cheese – and a smaller container with carrot sticks. She had a dip for the sticks, because, as she would say to her friends: “I’m not an animal.” And a bottle of orange juice mixed with champagne, a mimosa for her solitary picnic. “It’s not alcoholism if it’s only once,” she would say to the same friends.

Shelly sat on the coat and opened her carrot sticks and dip. She dipped, lifted, and crunched. The sticks were sweet, with just the right amount of crisp to make her delighted. She kept dipping and dipping, until they were gone.

Just as she lifted her sandwich container, the rain started. A few drops on the lid, then more, and before she could open it there was a full on downpour.

Shelly stayed sitting where she was, opened the container, and took a bite of the sandwich. She was careful to shield the bread under the lid, but otherwise continued to sit and enjoy her picnic.

When the sandwich was finished, and she was fully soaked through, she opened the mimosa. She sipped, savouring the sweet flavour, and looked around. No one else here, she thought. Strange. It’s only a little rain, and it’s warm rain; who wouldn’t want to enjoy this?

She continued to sip, delighting in the greenery around her, the water washing around her, down her. She smiled and lay back, full of happiness.


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