New Umbrella Then Comes The Rain
By John R. Greenwood
$49.97 was the ticket price. The bright blue stripes whistled at me from the corner.
Not more than three hours earlier I pulled some of the lawn furniture out from the darkness of the cellar. With it came the yellow patio umbrella. The umbrella was intact, but it was as faded as a twenty year old curtain. I whispered in through the window screen to my wife, "I think it's time to replace 'Old Yeller'".
My wife knows that for me, the spring lawn fertilizer comes first, and any new lawn accessories second, so I think I caught her off guard. Being the perpetual decorator she is, she grasped the opportunity handed her and said, "How about something with a pattern for a change?" Being a veteran of the Husband Army for almost 40 years I stopped just short of a puss and just nodded in agreement. As an HA Veteran I learned in year 38 when to surrender.
Jump ahead a few hours and I'm headed out on a solo flight to "Orange and Ugly" to search for a bolt I lost when winterizing my motorcycle. Did you notice how I jumped from lawn work to my motorcycle? That's what happens when men are left alone outside for too long. Anyway, I was in the home improvement store shopping for motorcycle parts when I spotted, "New and Blue" in the corner of the outdoor furniture department. The umbrella was just how my wife had described it. It was a nice fresh blue color with stripes. The best part was the price. They're only good for a couple of seasons anyway, why spend more than $49.97?
I crept in the driveway hoping to sneak the new umbrella into the center of the table as an unexpected surprise. I knew the person inside was baking me a fresh apple pie. I wanted to reciprocate my appreciation. Sometimes things just fall into place, uncharacteristically, today was one of those days. I found the bolt I needed at "Orange and Ugly" and Mrs. G. loved her new umbrella. Her decorating instincts intact, she was right again, the stripes did look nice.
We were looking forward to tomorrow being another sunny spring day so we could sit in the backyard and enjoy some fresh air under our new addition, but as you know, all good stories must come to an end. This one pulled up short on Sunday morning when I awoke to the sound of pelting rain on "New and Blue".
Well, it was a good run, I really didn't want to take the motorcycle out for a ride either.