excerpts from the latest chapter of the continuing saga known as Bob and Mary’s Excellent Adventure......................................
Mary is easily spooked by things that go bump in the night. So when she came back into the bedroom early the other morning on tiptoes, gliding as silently as the fog outside, and whispered in her best stage whisper, I knew that something had triggered her into spooked mode.
“Bob, wake up. Wake up. I think someone stole our trash can. I can’t see it at the end of the driveway.”
Wednesday is our trash pickup day so we put the 2 containers at the end of the drive on Tuesday evening so the collection agent ( they hate being called garbage collectors) can hoist them with the robotic arms on his truck into the truck’s holding tank, and then deposit the plastic bin back in its place at the curb. Our hardworking Supervisor of Detritus Removal ( they hate being called garbage collectors) always arrives very early in the morning, so one of Mary’s self assigned tasks on Wednesday morning is to check the fullness (pessimist) or emptyness (optimist) status of those bins and then take the appropriate action of either taking them back to their hiding place in the garage or spend the rest of the morning wondering why the lazy SOB didn’t do his job the way she expected.
I pulled the bedcovers over my head hoping that would make her disappear in the resultant darkness. No such luck. I was trapped into a response by her sense of urgency.
My first question for her was, “why are you sneaking around and whispering?
If the thief absconded with one of our garbage bins, he’s not likely to be hanging around hoping we’ll fill it up for him again before he leaves.”
“I don’t know why. It just seemed to be the thing to do. Now stop being such a lazy scaredy cat and find the guy and make him give us or trash bin back.” She hissed at me.
So as I reluctantly rolled over with great sighing and gasping, making as big a show of my displeasure as I cold so she would know that I really didn’t care if we were now one can short of a load, I had an epithany. I knew where the disappearing bin was.
“Did you actually go out to look if the bin was there, or did you rely on your limited view of the driveway from the kitchen window to determine if the bin was indeed missing or just hiding from your view?” I was grumbling doing my best Old-Man- Who- Was- Just --Awakened- For- No- Good- Reason act.
“Well, no. I’m not about to go out there alone in case he’s still there cleaning out the garage while we sit in here letting him take whatever he wants.”
I pressed on, “Has it occurred to you that just because you can’t see it, it is not there?
This one of those times when you have to rely on faith to carry you through.”
While this conversation was going on, we were making slow but steady progress, she huddled close to my back hiding as best she could in case there was any shooting, toward the door that would lead us outside and to the logical explanation for this vexing
Once we got outside where we cold survey the entire crime scene, it was obvious what had happened. Mary was forced to apologize for her hasty conclusion that something bad had happened. More importantly she had to apologize for not remembering that we have some of the finest neighbors anyone could hope for. Neighbors who routinely go out of their way to help you. I don’t know for certain that this is what happened, but my gut reaction is that Arlene, one of those neighbors who will always take the opportunity to do the little kindnesses without any fanfare whenever there is something that needs to be done, was out early walking her little dog, Sam, as she does every morning, when she encountered our trash bin either blocking the sidewalk or perhaps out in the street, and simply pulled it out of harms way, and dragged it back to our garage, where it was out of sight from our kitchen window.
I went back to bed to retrieve my lost sleep and when I woke later I wasn’t sure that I hadn’t dreamt the whole thing. I actually had to go out to the garage to convince myself that I wasn’t dreaming.