B r i t t a n i e L e i g h
Ice Cream Meltdown
A bead of sweat rolls off my forehead and lands next to the rainbow sprinkles. I lean toward the window with the extra-large chocolate and vanilla twist cone. The woman reaches out a pudgy hand, snatches the cone, stretches her mouth around the top of the ice cream and walks toward the picnic table.
I’m 16. It’s my third summer working at Fonda Dairy Bar. During the hot Fonda summers, I keep my windows rolled up on the ride to work, but the aroma of cow manure still seeps in.
Pudgy hand is back. She cuts in front of all the people waiting in line.
Ice cream has soaked through the napkin she’s wrapped around the bottom of the cone.
“I want my money back. Look at the mess this thing is making!”
If you eat a jumbo ice cream cone as slow as a turtle on a 90-degree day, it’s bound to seep through the bottom of the cone.
I offer her some napkins. She shakes her head. Ice cream is dripping all over the counter.
“Here, let me grab you a cup and a spoon,” I say.
Another head shake.
“I can put a new cone under that one.”
She isn’t having it.
She chucks the cone at me.
Oh, hell, no! Lukewarm cream runs down the left side of my body.
The only thing stopping me from climbing through the window and throttling her are the customers waiting behind her.
I open the cash register and give her $2.75.
“Have a great day,” I say.
Brittanie Leigh is a journalism student at State University of New York at New Paltz.