The Nice Thing About Strangers

Creative Non-Fiction Short Stories. :) Travel, Oldsters, Love, and Compassion.

Clock Watching

Trogir, Croatia, clocktower

The shuttle heading north is supposed to leave the airport at 8:05 pm.  The elderly pair in the front seat wait. The driver leaves the door open and the shuttle bus running.

“Is it 8:01?” She asks her husband. “8:02?”

“It’s probably 8:03 by now…” He confers with his watch, “8:02.  Or. But. Now, it’s 8:03.”

“A lot of exhaust. Like in that plane.”

“Glory, that was a lot of exhaust in the plane.”

“And here again,” she shudders at a chilly breeze of fumes, “We could get sick like this…Isn’t this how people sometimes kill themselves?”

He shakes his head quickly. “Oh no. No, let’s not talk about–It’s 8:04.”

At 8:05, still they wait. The driver finally closes the luggage compartment at, “8:08, my, 8:08.”

She sighs. “I don’t smell the exhaust anymore, do you?”

He sniffs. “Nope.”

“Maybe that’s not a good sign.”

“Yep, and it’s 8:09 even.”

–Denver, Colorado.

5 comments on “Clock Watching

  1. petchary
    March 13, 2013

    These little worries…

  2. anglophiletoad
    March 18, 2013

    That reminds me of Bertha and Clyde. Older couple that used to babysit my sister and me when I was little. They always repeated everything they said to each other. Immediately. No time for the words to sink in, or be misunderstood, or even for the other to confirm whether or not they’d heard: “Pass me the salt. I say, pass me the salt.” “Here it is. I say, here it is.” “Thanks. I say, thanks.” And so on…

    • Oh, I love that! 🙂 “I say” is a great character note. I can see them pretty clearly just from that!

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