Waiting for the movie to start

He held his right hand toward her, palm up, like he expected her to deposit her understanding in it any moment. Moving it back and forth like a bayonet toward her chest, he spoke in staccato speech, as she looked from side to side as if for an exit. They were just inside the lobby at AMC Lincoln Square, waiting for a movie starting sometime after 9:30, as I was.  Hard to tell how long they’d been together, or how long they’d stay that way. 



A Chinese man with sunken cheeks held his 4-year-old granddaughter against the counter at McDonald’s. Her body was jack-knifed over it, so that she could see the Happy Meal menu on the countertop plastic placard. She pointed to different items, perhaps a toy as well, and the 17-year-old Latina girl in the hairnet looked into her face, smiled, and pressed keys on the cash register, taking her order.