When she hears the overhead bell announce your entrance, the shopkeeper looks up from her crochet and gifts you with the most welcoming smile you’ve received in recent memory. Her rumpled white jacket more closely resembles a lab coat than an artist’s smock, and her wavy chocolate curls swim in all directions, as if Medusa’s snakes were friendly and wanted to invite you in for a cookie. “Welcome to the Nena Sanchez Gallery,” she says in a Dutch Caribbean-tinged accent. “I am the current Nena, and I specialize in grandmother services and color consulting.”
She gestures to her right, where you notice several other women. Their appearance is remarkably similar to Nena’s, but they range in age from twenty to sixty. “Every Nena has her own artistic and personal area of expertise. Are you interested in something specific today?”
“I don’t…what?”, you sputter, eyes darting from one Nena to the next. “But your sign says–”
“It is a common misunderstanding.” She chuckles. “My paintings are visible throughout the world. They do not require another gallery. Please, sit! Perhaps you would enjoy a cup of tea? Our excellent life coaching and mural painting courses are twenty percent off today.”
With pride, she hands you a price list and heats the kettle.
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