I have never been to Taco Bell. I did not grow up in an outing family. Though I pictured it to be spices and aromas of crisp tortilla shells laid out by the thousands, I am sure that I would discover none of the sort. Maybe three or four, at most, tossed together with some questionable greens, at the hands of two groggy teenagers exchanging no more than a word or two in a shift. That is a stereotype, of course, a prejudice opinion of someone who's never even set foot in a Taco Bell. Maybe it's not all I think, it may very well be the taco paradise that I dreamt up when I was young, conveyer belts on clouds and all that. Rivers of Coca Cola. Fields of hot peppers, little ornaments dangling from exotic bushes of all kinds. The kind of place where you might just see the smell that overwhelms you, full of sparkles and rainbows and hot sauce. O' to think. Who would know, looking at this building. Nothing much from the outside. A few lost souls wandering the hot pavement out front, ushering clean cars of protective mothers from the drive in. Sounds of coins singing as they dance on concrete, having slipped from the distant exchange of customer to employee. It's tiring here. The air hangs heavy, pulling at your clothes, and your skin, and your sweat. The Taco Bell itself is very alive though, the building breathes, Brick shackles haltering it to the ground. I'm not saying that the line in the drive in is busy, and it's an anti dine in service. But the bugs that It feeds climb the walls like ivy. The dumpster in the back wields scarves of flies and maggot earrings, ant freckles ever moving down the lanes of squashed tomatoes. I've not been on the inside, though I imagine an orchestral pit to be there. Steady hum of the fountain drink machine, accompanied by the clinking of silverware. The clicking of a worker biting her thumbnail, ticking of a clock. The light-show of the florescent bulbs in the bathroom gone haywire. And it doesn't stop once everyone leaves the building and appliances are sleeping. The parking lot becomes a home, to the woman with no teeth, who gums her cigarettes as she curses to the wind. A man sleeps on the bench by the football field, shielding his face from the final rays of sunlight bleeding through the late clouds. A mangy dog noses around for scraps, snout bowing from the sky to the gutters. The ground is littered with stories; an old watch lay alone by the storm drain. The butt of a cigarette kissed with red, over by the "employees only" door. A pretty lady poses under large fonts on an old magazine cover at the base of an oak tree. An oak tree that loiters over the sun stained roof. The windows of the building face the buzzing street. A young couple walk giggling back and forth, one of which checks their reflection. The mountains can be seen towering over the town in the distance, but they look so small next to the great Taco Bell. As the night spreads and reaches through the streets, the sounds of college kids are carried on the breeze. A house party a few blocks away create a chorus of whoops and hollers. Two young girls can be seen sneaking their first sips of alcohol under a warm streetlight. A graveyard hosts a few lonely wishes and farewells, lingering in the warmth of the candles that burn for the dead. The stars are as pretty here as they are everywhere else in the city; cloaked in a thick smog of light pollution. Little pin pricks of light, they speckle the vastness that shields this Taco Bell from prying critics, for they all retire to their private chefs and big silver screens at this time. In three days time, this building will be shut down, cast out of the minds of those who dreaded it. But where will the kind old woman eat now, who orders every day anywhere between 3 and 3:30? She has no family to dine with, but a smile paints her face because they know her order like their own. And where will the shy boy work now, face buzzing with acne, and no home to go to? He get's his meals there and nowhere else, free of charge. What will become of the oak tree, will it be cut down when the shopping mall moves in? And the watch, will it be buried under a construction site? Where are people going to find the reassurance of seeing themselves if not in the windows of the Taco Bell? And alas, what will happen to the posting on Nextdoor, one looming star sticking out like a sore thumb? All of those complaints will go unfulfilled, Never given the chance to change their minds. The mighty critique whom brought the building down will just move on to yet another posting, and another. The wonderful simplicity of the Taco Bell will be buried along with the watch, along with the food, and along with that man that Never woke up on the bench. I guess I'll never know what a Taco Bell is truly like. With the pathogen that took the nation, the dining in went with it. You might say I could go to another Taco Bell... but it wouldn't be the same. See, because I can walk in to those Taco Bells, and I can see that it is in fact like every other building in my town, with preppy smiles and moderate food and cushioned seats. But at this Taco Bell, I would never be given the chance to know whether or not the paradise I dreamt up is really in there or not. Maybe the cloud conveyer belts didn't pass the health codes. Or maybe the little sprites that plucked those peppers from the bushels went extinct. Or, maybe it really is just a building, soon to be a memory. I have never been to Taco Bell.