If you’re like most of us, you need to earn money by working for a living. Describe your ultimate job. If you’re in your dream job, tell us all about it — what is it that you love? What fulfills you? If you’re not in your dream job, describe for us what your ultimate job would be.
I pulled into the garage and parked next to my bike. Opened the car door for Irene, and we pushed into the kitchen. “What the heck am I going to do now, Rene?” I asked her.
“What do you mean? What kind of question is that? You’re retired now. You can do whatever you want.” Irene said as she walked across the kitchen and snagged a cup from that little rack of cups that she likes so much. She poured about an inch of thick, dark coffee into the cup, and lifted it towards me. “Want some?”
I shuddered, “no, thanks though.” Irene was one of those people who would leave a coffee pot on all day and drink from it all day too. This particular pot had been going for at least 8 hours, probably longer. I was pretty sure that what she was pouring would not be to my liking. But, she liked it. On more than one occasion Irene has been known to forget to turn off the pot at night, get up the next morning, and drink what was left while she was making a new one. It’s those new ones that I’ll have a cup from.
I looked down at the gold watch I had just been presented, 10:00PM. “I haven’t been up this late in 30 years,” I said. “You watch; when 3:00AM rolls around my eyes’ll pop open just like they always have. But I won’t have anywhere to go. I won’t have a job to do. No one’ll be depending on me. I worked for the paper for 50 years. All of a sudden, I don’t work for the paper anymore. That’s a huge void in my life I am going to have to fill somehow.”
“Get a hobby, travel, read. Fix this house up. Lord knows it could use some fixin’ up. You’ll think of something.” She came back over to me, stood on her tip toes and gave me a peck on the lips. “You always do.”
“Love ya,” I said, “I’m going to bed.”
“Be right up.”
It wasn’t the alarm, I hadn’t even set that, but something caused me to stir and roused me. I took stock of my situation and opened my eyes. It was dark and it was quiet, Irene lay still in the bed next to me. I looked at the glowing numbers of the alarm clock across the room 3:00AM, I was afraid of this. Downstairs, I started a pot of coffee and made some toast.
I ate my breakfast and stared out the front window into the night. Now what?
I don’t think it was a conscious decision and I was unsure why I was doing it but, I found myself easing open the door to the garage. I got my bike and headed to the gas station out by the highway. I eased over to the curb across the street, staying in the shadows.
Tommy Parr was getting his papers organized, getting ready to ride his route. His shiny new bicycle was leaning on its kickstand nearby. He looked up from what he was doing, a puzzled expression on his face and surveyed the street. He spotted me across the road, smiled and waved. “Mornin’ Mr. Stricklin,” he shouted.
I waved back. Tommy was going to do just fine. He was 15 years old, the same age I was when I started with the paper. He had what it took to be a great paper boy. I knew, I had trained him and I had been the best paper boy this town had ever known. Tommy got on his bike and started off on his route. I knew that the first paper he would throw would land squarely on the Evan’s front walk. Tommy had a good eye.
I turned my bike around and pedaled back home. Whatever you do – do it well.
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