The Car Wash Rumble

Despite my dislike for hypermarts, we went to Tesco’s today to pick up some things that we needed–essentials like rice noodles, peanuts and coconut milk. In the parking lot of Tesco’s, there are these car wash guys. They push these little black carts and wear the required neon green reflective vests that all blue collar workers seem to wear in the UK .¬† I don’t know how much it costs to have one of them wash your car because our car is such a heap that we’ve never bothered to wash it.

Normally, the car wash guys are a group of African men who gather their carts together in a group towards the center of the parking lot and loudly chat and laugh. As you walk by they call out to you, “You need a wash?” To that question we always make a joke about the pitiful state of our car and say it’s beyond washing.

Today things had changed. The car wash guys were spread out. One man with his cart¬† was positioned on the crosswalk at each row of cars. The men were all Eastern European now. Gone was the happy car wash mood. It was replaced by disdain. As we passed each man he looked at us like he wanted to get into a fight. I could just imagine them saying, “I will wash your car. Then I will kill you and stuff your body into my little black cart.” Maybe they just don’t like their green reflective vests.

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