This might sound like two cycles from Nirvana for some, but for me, not so much. Especially when I’m innocently standing in line at Molisi, soggy from shoes up thanks to the rain gushing outside, and a lady (not the one featured above; she is an innocent participant of luncheon for Tonga’s rugby team, Ikale Tahi, at the University of South Pacific) with two carts full of frozen chicken parts slowly processes through checking. Now, I’m holding all five items of my groceries and the lady behind me has four one-liter boxes of milk. She’s making it clear from the hems and the hahs that those boxes are weighing her down, and the repeated peers over my shoulder suggest I should stand by and let her in front of me. But I don’t.
The woman in front is now writing out a check — something I don’t think I’ve ever seen before here — and the cashier is still picking up chicken parts from the counter when I feel a slight shove from behind me. I straighten, certain I’ve misunderstood, but then the shove comes again. Soft, spongy with a little crunch almost, like the bending in of stiff fabric. My skin feels creepy. Another shove. No, there’s no mistake about it, I am certain that I’m being nudged forward. By boobs.
I look to the counter where it still isn’t cleared, not certain if it would be rude to put down my things when that terrible nudge comes again. More persistent this time and definitely annoyed. I step forward immediately and unload my arms, just before the woman behind me pushes my groceries into the chicken parts and slams down her boxes of milk. I look from them to the pile of grocery baskets just beside me, but I don’t dare turn around. I just wait until I can check through the line, get my things and get them back into my Mitsubishi Pajero Jr.