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Awakenings Chapter 2: Realizations, Page 13

Ed looked at her, the wheels turning in his head, and decided to change the subject.  “In three years we might be able to harvest the first crop of our newly planted zinfandel grapes.” 

After dinner Ed offered Pauline some port. “This Syrah Port is actually pretty good.  Would you like to try some with some chocolate plantation cookies?”

Pauline glanced at the time on her cell phone.  ‘I had better not; I have a 4:00 AM flight to catch to Chicago.  I have an 11:00 AM meeting there. I need to get some sleep. I really should be going.  Thank you for the wonderful dinner.  Next time, it will be my turn to take you to a good restaurant.”

Ed retrieved Pauline’s coat and walked her to the door.  “I am not afraid of crossing lines.  Thank you for coming tonight.  It is always a pleasure.” 

Pauline smiled as she gave Ed a little hug and turned to walk through the door.  Stepping out on the landing outside the door, Ed had a good view of the city streets at night below his hillside apartment as he watched Pauline walk away.  He stood for a long time inhaling the cool evening air.  Suddenly he had an inspiration.  He knew just exactly what line he would cross.

Stepping back inside, Ed walked over to the phone and picked up his little book of phone numbers.  Looking up a number, he dialed his phone.  “Hi DeMario? This is Ed, your cousin Umberto’s friend.”

“Good evening Ed, how are doing.  It’s been a while since Umberto’s daughter’s wedding reception.  When are you coming back down to visit us?”

“How about tomorrow for a few days.  I would like you to take me down to the Fresno railroad terminal.  I’ll buy you lunch at Maria’s.”

“Not tomorrow, I have to run a load of sprinkler pipe out to Riverdale.  I am available the day after tomorrow.”

Ed smiled to himself.  “Wonderful.  I will see you the day after tomorrow.  Thanks again for your hospitality”.  Hanging up the phone, he found himself both elated and very nervous.

That evening, Joe Junior was playing basketball and Elise was taking Cathy to a 4H meeting.  That freed Joe for a while to make another trip to the wine tunnel.  The lights had been charging in his shop next to his utility ATV, so it was an easy matter just to load everything back up and head out to the far end of the vineyard to near the collapsed tunnel.   Porto, Joe’s always faithful dog, naturally accompanied him, running alongside the utility ATV with seemingly boundless energy.

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