A greeter dressed in white stood atop the ladder to assist lakeside arrivals. Edna approached the bow as she prepared to disembark for the much ballyhooed Ladies Tea at the Garden.
Ed was mesmerized by all the sleek, expensive watercraft queuing up before the rocky landing. His 1981 angler pontoon boat seemed out of place. He maneuvered close to the ladder, allowing the faded bumpers hanging over the side to cushion the slight impact. The greeter cringed.
Edna smiled at Ed as she stepped off.
She loved that old pontoon boat and wouldn’t want to arrive any other way.
“Uh oh.” Ed’s heart sank as he felt the depths of the bottom drawer of his dresser—a place he hadn’t explored in decades. He knew immediately as his fingers touched the small, square cardboard and cellophane cover.
The 1909 S VDB wheat penny was the crown jewel of his coin collection—until Edna accidentally threw it out. At least that’s what Ed has claimed for the past forty years. And he’s never, ever let her forget it.
“Whatcha doing?” Edna asked unsuspectingly.
“Oh. Uh. Just straightening up these old drawers.”
"Let's see," Edna said, always glad to help granddaughter Ellen with her homework. What are signs of spring?
"Here's my list so far," Ellen exclaimed proudly. "Blooming flowers, greening grass, chirping birds, rain showers."
"Good!" Edna said to the third grader. “Does Grandpa have any ideas?”
Ed started to speak but abruptly stopped, holding up his index finger as if to say "Just a sec." Edna handed him a handkerchief to wipe his runny nose. Ed hesitated again, letting out a loud ACHOOthat startled Ellen. He coughed repeatedly but was finally able to speak. "Earthworms on the driveway."
"How'd it go?" Edna asked as Ed unloaded his golf clubs.
"I won," Ed declared.
"Awesome! What did you shoot?"
"I shot 88. Miller had 77, Charlie 84, and John 95.”
Edna scratched her head. "Huh? Then how did you win?"
"Simple. Miller cussed up a storm every time he missed a putt. Charlie whacked his driver on a tree trunk after a bad shot, and John complained all day about the group ahead of us playing too slow. Me? I just enjoyed the beautiful day and had fun."
Edna considered what she'd just heard. Gosh, Ed really did win.
"I'll trade my jello for your pudding," Ellen said to Huong. Quanesha giggled.
Ed and Edna were enjoying Grandparents' Day at Bayview Elementary. Their granddaughter Ellen and her best friends—the three amigas—laughed and gulped their food before skipping out arm in arm.
The sudden silence was awkward as the three sets of grandparents remained at the lunchroom table. Eyes glanced upward and downward as the elderly guests seemed to be inspecting the ceiling and floor. "Nice weather," Edna finally offered.
Mercifully, the bell relieved them.
As they left, Ed and Edna knew the kids have it right.