The old man must have been 85. At least.
His wife, not far behind him in years.
He was big for an old man. His wife was little, even for an old woman. This was evident by the fact that he was sitting high on top of a seat installed as part of his walker, and her eyes as she stood could look straight into his.
Their bodies were hunched. And wrinkly. And covered with sun spots. Both had thinning white hair.
She wore giant glasses that covered half her face. He wore a faded white button down with faint brown pin stripes that he’s probably worn weekly since he was 50.
He sat on his walker, with her hands in his.
They had this spark in their eyes that I noticed from my covert position on the other side of the jewelry counter at Walmart where I had camped just to watch their shenanigans from a safe enough distance that they wouldn’t take notice of me.
The couple were huddled-over, smack dab in the center of the greeting card aisle. Giggling.
They first caught my eye as they giggled quietly to each other, followed by rapid whispering to one another, followed by a crazy aggressive make-out session, followed by a quick embrace and a shared belly laugh between them.
It soon became evident what they were doing. They were fishing.
Fishing for victims? No. Not the right word. Fishing for an audience? No, that’s not it either. They weren’t exhibitionists. The way they were acting made that clear enough. No… They were fishing for… smiles. They were fishing for awkwardness. They were fishing for returned giggles and whispers from others. They were fishing for a spark to light up their otherwise uneventful day.
And the whole thing was awesome.
Every time someone began wandering down the greeting card aisle, which was often that day, the couple would do their whisper & giggle routine. Then the old man would loudly clear his throat just as the shopper was making her way awkwardly around them, and with a big burst of energy he pulled his wife in and said, “come here baby!” Then they’d make out. They’d force the other shopper to walk around their public display of affection, and if I had to guess they were making it as slurpy and as wet and as loud as they possibly could.