Moving Out

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By Anonymous

A neighbor I’ve never met pushes a dolly full of boxes into the elevator. “Moving in or out?” I ask.

“Out,” he says. “Just got deployed.” I don’t respond immediately because I don’t know how.

“Where are they sending you?”

“Poland,” he says. “Near Belarus.”

The elevator stops. “I feel obliged to thank you for your service,” I say.

He thanks me for thanking him as he exits. I call out behind him, “Good luck in Poland!” and instantly regret it, although I cannot explain why.

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4 thoughts on “Moving Out

  1. I would react the exact same way as you. I tend to wish people good luck in EVERYTHING. Even things that don’t even technically require luck. I don’t always know what to say 😂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I was deployed six times, and I still struggle with how to respond when thanked for my service. I have settled on “It was an honor to serve.” As awkward as it can feel, thank you for acknowledging your neighbor’s service–it has meaning.

    Liked by 1 person

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