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Monday, July 31, 2017

(8) A BIG RED-FACED POLICEMAN WAS AT THE WHEEL.



How I Met Pat

The day that I borrowed her Buick from Myrt
I had some tough luck, but I didn't get hurt . . .
Though I might have got into a rather bad jam
If I'd not been the wonderful driver I am.

First of all:  Myrt's garage wa a pretty tight fit,
And in backing, I bent the car's fender a bit.
Next, turning a corner a little mite wide,
I saw that my car was about to collide
With a far bigger car, so I slammed on the brake--
Which proves I'm resourceful and smart and awake.

The other car's driver, becoming unnerved,
Blew out a rear tire as he slithered and swerved.
But in spite of his adjectives, temper, and noise,
I straightened my hat with my usual poise;

Then loosing the brake, I continued ahead
Till I came to a light that was just turning red.
Thinking fast, I decided the best thing to do
Was to step on the pedal and hurry on through.

Well, that's when the fuss and excitement began!
I knocked a man down--oh, the best-looking man!
This was the morning's most scary mishap.
I didn't exactly run over the chap,
But I have to admit I so narrowly missed him,
It frightened the poise right out of my system.

So kneeling beside him, I--I--well, I kissed 'im!
A second went by, maybe six, maybe seven,
                Then, "Begorry!" he said, "Sure, I've gone straight to heaven!"
O, handsome and bold was his Irishman's face,
And his voice scattered shamrocks all over the place.

Since then, for I love him a very great deal,
When we go for a ride I let Pat take the wheel.
Not that I'm not a fine driver!  Not that!
                                 But: "You're better at kissin' than drivin'!" says Pat.
                                                                    Ernestine Cobern Beyer
March 23, 1959                                                                         
Cohasset
     Vonnie and I had fun on our trip to Swarthmore—she’s such good company.  She was telling me that Kathie seemed more like a friend than a sister.  She said the only thing was, she had to think what she was going to say before she said it, so Kathie wouldn’t get mad at her.
     “It’s been good for me, though,” she said.  “It’s taught me not to put my foot in everyone’s mouth.”
     We started out early to be sure we’d arrive in time for Kathie’s swimming meet at Temple University.  The building turned out to be on a heavily-trafficked street like Washington Street in Boston.  We inched our way along as the minutes flew by, and every time I asked for directions, I was told we were practically there.  A 3:50 I finally found the University and prepared to turn left on a side street and park.  A man barked at me from a passing car, “You can’t turn left here, lady!” but I decided to do it anyway.
     I took a guilty look in my rearview mirror where I saw a big red police car with a big red-faced policeman at the wheel.  I had no recourse but to fall back on my feminine wiles.  I pulled over, rolled down my window, and called to him, “Officer, you’re just the man I want to see.  I’ve come all the way from Boston to see my daughter in a swimming meet and I’ve had a perfectly terrible time trying to find Temple University, can you help me, I’ll just die if I’m late!”
     He calmed down from a raging lion to a purring tabby, not without kindly informing me that I shouldn’t have made a left turn where I did.  He showed me where I could park the car and pointed out the location of the pool.  He told me he was from Attleboro himself, and we wonderingly agreed it was a small world.
     Kathie swam beautifully, and her coach told me they were all impressed with her progress.  She flunked the swimming test required of all freshmen, but by the time she passed it a couple of weeks later, the coach saw her possibilities—in those suits you can see everything.  Kathie has become addicted to the sport.  She says she always feels wonderful after a meet, but still has butterflies in her stomach before the starting signal.  She loses two or three pounds every time from sheer nervousness.

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