|JUST THE TICKET (standard:drama, 1057 words)|
|Author: BENTLINK||Added: Oct 13 2009||Views/Reads: 1489/855||Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)|
|Good advice can come from some odd places...|
Just the Ticket As city parks go, it was nothing special, less than half a block on each of its four sides. It was however adjacent to the interstate bus and railroad stations so in temperate weather it attracted people on layover that wanted to escape the dirt and noise of the waiting areas within the terminals. The young man walked slowly towards the odd looking fountain at the park's center. He was in no particular hurry; his bus was going to be late. The normal one-hour layover was being stretched to three hours because of “equipment failure”. He was a young eighteen years but had already learned to adjust himself to things that were beyond his control. He reminded himself again “no need to hurry now the bus company is in charge of your life until you arrive in Nashville”. He sat for a time on the rim of the deep fountain and the white sound of its gushing water smoothed out the tightness in his neck and shoulders the delay had caused. When he began growing damp from the fountain's spray he stood and moved to one of the benches located under the majestic oak trees that rimmed the park. His movement away from the fountain sent a couple of gray squirrels bounding from ground to tree and forced a handful of assorted birds that had been picking at spilled popcorn bits near the bench into flight. He leaned back on the bench eyes closed replaying visions of how he imagined things would go for him in Nashville. He would play some of his best licks on his guitar for a few people and they would be impressed. They would introduce him around and he would be asked to join a big star's band for a road tour. After he got to know everyone in the show, he would break out the songs he had written and the star would record several of them. After a few minutes of imaginary songwriter star status he was brought back to the here and now by, a whistling old man who walked spryly up and dropped with some force onto the bench's other end. The elder seemed shorter and older than his jaunty walk had indicated. The old guy was much over dressed for the warm weather, wearing both a sweater and wool hat. He looked frail, perhaps even ill yet both his gray hair and small mustache were neatly trimmed. The woolen clothing though wrong for the season was clean and well fitted. When he inquired “Bus or train”? His voice had a strong resonance sounding like someone that was used to public speaking “Bus” the young musician, replied. “I would have first guessed train from your heels” came the quick response pointing at the young mans almost new boots. “Heels can say a lot if you know the language. Not just the easy things like worn down means bus and working your way through a hard patch. If you look more closely, you can see things like a rough area above the right outside heel that says the wearer probably drives a good deal. Little bits of dirt and grass clippings on the soles and heels points to the person coming from the suburbs while more dirt further up, a little smeared mud, or some grass seeds speaks of country. What are you up to in Nashville?” the old boy ask. Now how in the heck did the old guy know about his plan for Nashville he wondered! “No I don't read minds,” the older man said in response to the surprised look on the youngsters face. “It's that ticket in your shirt pocket. Oh how rude of me, my names Johnson. Bob to most folks. Yes very rude of me indeed” he said extending his hand. The old fellow half stood and took the young mans hand in a firm grip then almost at once began an unsuppressed chuckle and in fact, he seemed close to laughing out loud. “What do you play? My bet would be guitar. Oh my goodness, you're on your way to Nashville to make it big playing a guitar”. The young man's face instantly reddened. His feelings clearly hurt he quickly withdrew his hand from the old man's grasp all the while Click here to read the rest of this story (34 more lines)
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