I'm outside during my lunch time break at work. On my daily walks, I'd been stopping to care for a plant / bush / tree on the side of the road. Today, I see that the side of the road has been dug up. And I'm very dismayed to see that all the plants have been hacked down to just stumps, presumably to make room for the equipment that would allow construction to take place.
I can't even identify the plant that I had once cared for or its location. So I turn around and walk slowly in the opposite direction, looking carefully. Some little bits of sparkling mica catch my eye. They twinkle like snowflakes in the moonlight as I walk by. In one little pocket of sand, I see a larger shiny stone, about the size of a flattened pea. I stop and bend down to pick it up. But my fat numb fingers are not nimble. They push the stone deeper into the sand, and they dislodge more loose sand that slides down over it, like a mini avalanche.
Frustrated, I scoop up the area with my fingers and let the sand fall between my fingers, leaving a few small sheets of extremely fine and clear mica. They are about half the size of a microscope slide, but they are amazingly clear.
I realize that I might attract the attention of a construction worker. In fact, one walks by, rapidly pushing a large, heavy, orange roller, which tamps down a foot-wide section of sand along the edge of the road.
A woman from the construction company notices me and walks up to me. She's not a laborer but either a supervisor or a company representative. She's curious to know what I've found, so I hold out my hand and show and tell her. Unfortunately it's apparent that I mistook the mica for some clear plastic hanging file folder tabs. It stands to reason that I'd find office garbage in this industrial complex.