Recently my esteemed publisher, Rhonda Penders of The Wild Rose Press, sent out a general invitation to lunch for those of her brood who live within reasonable distance of Cape Cod. Events that involve more than a couple of hours usually require some cogitation and rearranging of my schedule, but not this one. I leaped at the chance to meet a woman I’ve admired for a long time, even though the Cape is at best, in good traffic, a 6-hour round trip. I was debating how to manage the visit when my next-door neighbor Hal called.
Well, technically he’s my ex-next-door neighbor, and I’ll never forgive him for that “ex” business. He and his wife Lindy were terrific neighbors for seventeen years, and I’ve missed them something awful in the couple months since they moved to Cape Cod. I could tell you stories…about fences, ice boating, dumb dogs, cat sausages, and that damned OCD whippoorwill they left behind.
|Eastern Whippoorwill. To hear it:|
Anyway, Hal called. Turns out their house is sold and he needs to remove the last of his stuff (that’s not the word he used) before the closing. But since the dump--excuse me, the recycling center--won’t be open the day he’ll be here, he wanted to know if he can leave his s**t in my garage overnight.
He promised it would only be a trash bag full. Maybe a box. Or two. Oh, and maybe there’s another bag in one of the closets. But it wouldn’t be much, he promised. What could I say? I remembered how they helped us out when our well went dry, and I said sure. Then I mentioned the lunch. Not angling for an invitation, just knowing Hal would appreciate the coincidence.
Of course he invited me to visit. Bring my bike and stay overnight. That way I’d break up the travel time. And of course I accepted. It will be fun. Free room and board on Cape Cod? He can leave more s**t in my garage any time.
After all, he conned me into becoming a library trustee. And I have a whippoorwill they forgot.