The day began inauspiciously. When I started the car; the radio came on and the unappealing voice of Merrick Garland’s could be heard saying that the unjust war in Ukraine would not be tolerated. Quite right, I thought, but what about Trump and the assault on Congress? I put my car in reverse.

Seconds later I heard an explosion and shards of rear window were propelled into my car and across my front yard. A small branch on the pear tree was the culprit.

Resignedly, I did what I must and headed to Ross Beakes Collision Services on W. Ann St. Two men were in the office; I told them I had backed into a tree. They responded with humor and sympathy.

It would take them an hour to clean out the remaining shards, seal the window with plastic, and assess the damage. I decided to take a walk. 

I hadn’t gone far when i found myself in front of Bloom City Club.

The sign said “OPEN,” so I went in. I was greeted pleasantly by two young women in the reception area.

One told me that she liked my purse and she loved the color (green). The other said that she loved the way I was wearing my hair that day. I was told that the budtender would be with me soon, and she was.

The marijuana buds were displayed and lit like precious gems. I asked for the lowest dose gummies. I asked if I could take a photo. “No photos,” said the budtender.

Prominently displayed was a vintage decal boasting of Ann Arbor’s 1972 five-dollar civil-infraction ticket for possession of fewer than two ounces of marijuana. This was one of the most lenient pot laws in the country and came about after John Sinclair was sentenced to ten years in prison for possession of two joints.

As I was leaving with my purchase of strawberry-flavored CBD gummies I felt the time was propitious to share a story from my youth. I first told the budtender and then one of the pleasant young ladies in reception.

I began with “Fifty years ago.”

At this I perceived that my listeners seemed taken aback and doubtful. I continued: “Fifty years ago I was sitting in an outdoor restaurant in Athens, Greece. Two tables away was an American man regaling his companions about the famous five-dollar fine for possession of marijuana in Ann Arbor, Michigan.”

Having finished my story with that punchline the pleasant young woman seemed impressed.

“Wow, thanks for sharing!”

I walked out, well pleased to have contributed to the general knowledge of ancient Greek and Ann Arbor history.