There are no more days before rodeo. The line was long but I did everything right. I made my very first friend walking up and down the line.

I size them up in passing. I walk ahead, then walk back. I don’t overthink. I feint, low outside, with an innocent interjection. I’m met. I lunge with curiosity and step to the inside. And I meet them.

A dog that took care of an injured opossum. A veteran with PTSD wearing ceramic plated bulletproof vest. A trans autist from Arkansas with two friends in tow. This person is my friend in about thirty seconds. We have exchanged contact information after a minute. Back stories take three minutes and the conversation opens up until the line moves.

I don’t know their face, I don’t know their name, their pronouns or even their gender. The line moves us to the door and kicks us through into a dark room. We are separated. Carried in different directions by the current of people and our goldfish attention spans. I don’t care, because in fact someone here has seen me. And I’ve seen them. And have each other’s contact info. The miracle!