In honor of Mrs. S., I've just switched on my coffeemaker.
Our weatherjerk has forecast rain and I'm prepared. I've a good book (One Second After, my third or forth reading) and it seems a quiet day to relax. I'm at work, but after a day like yesterday where the action was none stop and a few days after payday, I think it'll be slow around here today.
I do have a couple of long pieces to write. These memories have haunted me for weeks and I need to get them recorded while they're still fresh in my mind. Trouble is, I like to write when I'm certain I'll not be disturbed, which isn't possible here at the shop.
Someone will always walk in and flop down and want to talk. I'm not good at idle chit-chat. Some even call me reserved, too quiet. So be it. Anyhow, maybe I'll write a longer piece today. I always hammer my pieces out. Never a draft, just write as the words pour from my mind. Not an easy process. I seldom if ever edit, and that tells on me. So, we'll see how it goes today.
I have a working title for one of the pieces. South Moon Under. Don't steal it or I will track you down. I'll find 'ya and smack 'ya one. One or two of you might have read Majorie Kinnan Rawling's novel of the same title. It was one of my favorite books as a young man. Its setting was but a few miles from my current home. If you haven't as yet read the book, you're missing something wonderful. It is available in Kindle edition.
Little Bit was very chipper this morning. She will attend the zoo today (they should be there now) with her class and her step-mother as one of their chaperons. She bounced in her seat and had the biggest smile planted on her face...."Papa, we get to eat a sack lunch. It's wonderful, Papa. A real sack lunch."
Hey, it's the little things.
"Papa, do you like the zoo?"
"No, Honey, Papa doesn't like the zoo."
"Why not?" She turns to me and puts on one of her pouts. "You and Nana take me all the time."
I waited for an adjustment to my driving and glanced over and smiled and said, "Cause, it stinks, and its always hot and its expensive and the snacks cost far too much and the zoo doesn't allow Papa to shoot the critters for practice. That's why."
Big brown eyes stare back at me. She crinkles up her face and her mouth falls open. I've moved to the left lane and watch a truck cut me off. I'm smiling, inside. I chance a quick look her way. It's working.
"Ah, Little Bit, Papa isn't mean. Seriously, wouldn't it be fun to ride the zoo train with our rifles and as we come upon the cages of animals select a target and bag some fresh meat."
Sometimes, mind you, I go a wee bit far with my jokes.
"Oh, Papa." She began to cry. Oops.
She's turned face towards her window and ignores me. I reach and gently rub her little shoulders and say, "Sweetheart, Papa was just joking."
Cheerful and chipper mood dispelled.
After we've reached our destination I parked and reach and pulled her into my arms. I felt awful. I explained I was just making fun, joking. She finally understood and forgave me. I helped her apply her 'lipstick.' Fake stuff her Nana gave her for Christmas. Then, "Papa."
"You'd never really hurt the Zoo animals would you. You really mean it when you said it was a joke, didn't you, Papa."
"Of course, my sweet little girl, of course."
She went to school with a smile.