Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Calm (emotionally) (09/13/07)
TITLE: The Season
By Mark Bell
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People pushed by him. Clutching bags and purses tightly in their hands, they dashed here and there. They went in one store and out of another. No one looked at anyone else. They rushed on intent on their own pursuits.
He turned and sat on a bench. And, in his mind’s eye, he saw the bobber dip under the surface. He could see himself jerking the pole, setting the hook. He could feel the pull of the fish as it fought the line, trying to get away with his worm.
“Ho! Ho! Ho,” a bearded Santa Claus boomed, a few feet away.
The Salvation Army worker rang his bell incessantly. “Merry Christmas,” he shouted above the din on the street. “Please give all you can to help.”
Bob smiled at the memory. He glanced around him, and laughed. He wondered what everyone would think if he did all his shopping with a smile. No one else seemed to have one. His smile faded away.
People had no sense of enjoyment anymore, he thought sadly. Not for the season, or even good memories.
The fish wasn’t a big one. But, the joy of the catch filled him. Quietly, he let the fish go, rebaited his hook, and tossed the line back into the stream. He dipped his feet in the cool water, laid back on the bank and watched clouds move across the sky.
He glanced around again, and sighed. He rose from the bench and merged with the crowd. Quietly, he moved down the street in search of his own gifts for the season. More people pushed by him. They bumped and jostled him.
Bob remained mostly oblivious. He was remembering clouds, and enjoying the gift of a day.
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