An aging hippy couple living in their RV and a small town cop with a secret verses the vastness of Homeland Security. There are no winners or losers, just people struggling to find better understanding.
I'll post a page or two each day of this yet to be published 200 page adventure. Not having gone through the rigorous professional edits yet, this story may still be a bit rough. If you spot an error, please drop me a note. firstname.lastname@example.org
Then, in the silence of the early afternoon siesta time, both Myrtle and I turn to the sound of a huge diesel pusher.
Without turning back to look at me, Myrtle says, "Our new neighbor’s arrived, Billy-Bob."
I lift my cold can of beer in salute as the driver noses in to the spot with a huge converted Grayhound vista-cruiser. He tips his dirty straw cowboy hat and grins through a cigar butt stuffed in his pudgy cheeks. He climbs out and disconnects a long, skinny trailer then pushes it aside. The bus is so big, it barely fits. Myrtle and I sit in stunned silence as he jostles into the space.
She turns to me. "Move the truck, Billy-Bob. It’ll make it easier for him."
I take the last sip of my beer and set the empty can on our little folding table. I get out of my aluminum chair and walk over to the truck digging in my Levis. I dangle the keys and point at the truck. The big bus drops to an idle and rests until I get the truck started and pull it out of the way.
The extra room allows him to slide into place. He drops his automatic levelers and brings the polished silver colored bus to a level position in the time it takes me to re-park the Toyota.
His custom, twenty-foot long pop-out slides six feet into open air and locks into position with the familiar snap of its steel latches.
In a minute, he leans out the window with three longneck bottles of an imported beer. "Want one of these?"
I drop my empty can of Budweiser in the trash and nod.
The big side door opens on the far end of the bus and he descends the five or six steps to the sand. When he comes bounding around the front of the bus, half-chewed cigar in his right hand, three longnecks in his left, he yells in a warm southern drawl, "Howdy, I’m Frank Deluchi.
We pull out a third folding chair and he sits with his back to the lake. With a small bottle opener he pulls from his hip pocket, he opens the bottles and hands them to Myrtle then me.
Once we introduce ourselves, I ask, "where you comin’ from?"
He gives me a sly smile. "Last night I stayed outside of Palm Springs under the wind generators. Man, was that noisy."
I take a short pull from my bottle. "I mean originally where are you from?"
He takes a breath, releases it slowly with a soft whistle. "Been on the road for three years. Lived in Atlanta, Georgia, but that was a coupla’ lifetimes ago. I mostly never spend more than a few days in any one place."
Myrtle says. "That’s gotta be lonely."
He turns to her and smiles. "No mame. It makes me more willing to cut through the bull and get right down to business."
Myrtle gives him a suspicious smile. "Business?"
It probably didn’t look suspicious to Frank, but having been married to her over twenty years, I know that look.
He lifts his bottle. "The business of being neighborly."
She sighs with relief. "Oh."
"Doesn’t mean I don’t have business to take care of, but not here and not now."
Her second, "Oh," isn’t quiet as filled with relief.
We spend the rest of that afternoon sitting under our foldout canopy, watching the birds and boats, talking about light-hearted events and telling jokes. Frank stays for dinner and once he’s back in his bus, both Myrtle and I agree it’s been an entertaining evening.
The next afternoon he springs his little surprise.
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Copyright June 2011 Nik C. Colyer All rights reserved