This is Joyce
I met Joyce as I was walking home on 65th street near Amsterdam Avenue. I was behind her as she was pushing her shopping cart. I could tell even before I met her that she was flamboyant. She was wearing a low-cut blouse with thin straps and sporting a big red hat with a large bow. And although there was no forecast of rain, nor any clouds in the sky, she carried an umbrella. When I stopped her to talk, she was happy to do so.
Joyce pointed out that we were standing in front of the building in which she lived. I noticed her shopping cart had no packages, yet she was returning home. I asked her why she had the shopping cart. She said she always takes it with her when she goes out for a walk. With a family album?
As we were talking, one of her neighbors came out of her building a middle-aged woman- who attempted to fix Joyce's strap that had slipped down off her shoulder. Joyce immediately pushed it back down saying she liked it that way.
She had been a movie actress. She began to rummage through her shopping cart and took out a photo album. She showed me photos of herself as a much younger woman in a bathing suit. I asked if I would recognize any of the names of the movies she was in, she couldn't recall any.
I asked if she was married. She told me that she had been married, but her husband died many years ago. He was a movie producer and they met while working in Hollywood. When I asked her age, she said: "the doctors tell me that I am 86 years old."
Slightly odd, very happy and continues getting old and getting out.