Hey, kids. This post won’t make sense unless you read first my last post from yesterday. This is a continuation of that story. . .
It had survived for eight decades until now, Martin Fletcher thought. Until this evening. But what would happen tonight? This was his way of thinking about this nightclub that had defied the odds and the local environment for so long. How could it keep going? Would tonight be the beginning of the end? Would his employees show up? Would the food be delivered? Would this be the night that his customers – most of them semi-regular – would all have other things to do? Would it all come undone, starting tonight?
In the early afternoon he took the hose and watered the flower beds surrounding the little building. Pansies and daisies and four o ’clocks, yellow, purple, scarlet and blue. The slow, light spray dampened and darkened the hot soil and brought the scent of the earth to him. Finished there, he went again down the stone walkway toward the river and sprayed the red roses that covered the trellis over the path. He heard the laughter and so he shut off the hose and dropped it and walked to the top of the rise so he could see the whole river, bank to bank, and there were the kids, five boys, bobbing here and there in the slow, green stream, standing on the bank and swinging out over the water on the rope that hung so high in the sycamore that leaned over the stream at a seemingly unsupportable angle. They were here every warm day in summer and then they vanished into the thin air of Bim not to be seen again until the first warm day in spring. He allowed himself to wonder if they were immortal creatures – if the boys he’d seen playing there forty years ago when he first bought the place were actually this same bunch.
At last he went to the front of the property and turned the hose to a strong stream and rinsed the walkway from the parking lot and rinsed the helicopter maple seeds from the porch.