Finding Out, Surprisingly
In deep snow, Cara Linden slowly struggles trying to reach Annie Hale’s trailer home. Because this countryside road isn’t clearly plowed, pharmacist Cara parked the car near a Post Office. It’s only a short distance to walk. Cara is very anxious to see her mother’s best friend Annie, it isn’t a medical reason but curiosity about a certain photo. Cara now happily thinks of earlier, she enjoyed tea, divine chocolate cake with elderly Lucy and Greta Kennedy. They’re adorable sisters who truly hate January weather but they cherish company. Cara is very helpful to the sisters with their routine prescription. The sisters pass time by painting reading or doing a puzzle. Greta had painted a charming picture of Cara’s dad Frank who looked after the lawn, basic maintenance in the summer. Sadly, Frank passed away four years ago, Cara holds fun, wonderful memories of her dad. She can still picture him playing the fiddle to the contented sisters. Cara smiles with love, admiration.
Now, she is focussed on dearest Annie as Cara can see part of her trailer. Cara’s last time here in this quiet area was the fifteenth of December, Uncle Jeff has a cottage nearby. He warmly invited the family to a skating, Christmas party. Cara’s mom, Hilary wasn’t around, she had left to be with her son, Martin, his wife and three children. At Uncle Jeff’s party, Cara was looking for more napkins in the cabinet drawer. She had come across an old, black and white photo, young Uncle Jeff, her smiling mother who was holding a bowling trophy. Annie is on the right, she holds a cake with two other girls. On the back of the picture, a written note, Hilary, what a fantastic night for you! There was a heart with the name, Shawn in the middle. Cara naturally wondered who had wrote this. She then notices some cute pictures of her dad, she blissfully puts the photos in her sweater pocket. In the background, Aunt Susan’s voice was heard. While passing out the napkins, Cara wanted to ask Annie about the photo but she had been drinking wine. It surely was a fun, enjoyable time. Now, Cara is thinking of quiet Steven Young whom she was with briefly at the party. Cara went on six dates since November. Steven is a busy mechanic, he, his brother and cousin run their own garage, gas station. When Steven isn’t working, he plays hockey. Cara thinks of him as a friend, she doesn’t want to get serious. There’s still feelings of a broken heart while at university.
Now, Cara is finally at Annie’s place, she is surprised to see a red truck in the driveway. Cara wonders who could be here. Excited Annie opens the door. She greets by touching Cara’s cold cheeks.
"Hello Sweetie, wonderful to see you again! How was your Christmas? Gosh, still thin but so pretty, you look just like your mom! I had spoken to her Tuesday, she loves volunteering at the hospital!" Cara moves close for a hug, Annie is like an Aunt.
"It’s always great seeing you Annie! My Christmas was nice, busy at work. Mom is happy. Oh, what a pretty plant, big and full!" Cara looks while stroking Annie’s cat, Mona. Annie softly giggles.
"Granddaughter Rachel sent it for Christmas. It’s perfect in that spot. Give me you coat, sit by the heater. I like to introduce you to Ken Marsh, he is my nephew’s friend. Ken, this is Cara Linden, a very special lady!" Cute Ken happily gets up, he is about to shake her hand. Cara feels nervous because Annie is playing matchmaker. Ken has a gentle handshake, warm, friendly smile.
"It’s so nice to meet you Cara, Annie mentioned your work. Weekend exercises for the elderly, so thoughtful!" Cara looks shy, she wants to speak with Annie privately. This is too unexpected.
"Ken is a terrific plumber, my kitchen sink works great now! Have some sweets, Cara. Would you like hot chocolate?" Cara sits by a bookcase of family photos, cute treasures. She happily gazes.
"No thanks, I had tea, cake. Wow, all the Christmas cards!"
"Yes, I love my cards, hate to take them down. Your mom is on top, next to Nora and Winifred. It’s sad, no card from Sophia, how I miss her. You know Cara, the five of us girls are true loyal friends. We call ourselves, Shawn which stands for Sophia, Hilary, Annie, Winifred, Nora. We four, are close!" Cara looks shocked.
"Annie, did you say, Shawn?" She gazes, Annie nods.
"Yes, it’s cute, hey!" Cara is giggling, so delightful. Annie
and Ken stare, they wonder what is so funny. Ken starts laughing.
"This reminds me of my sister who was waiting for my dad to sit on the whoopie cushion!" Cara turns to Ken, that’s comical. All
three laughed so wonderfully for awhile, the pleasant sound truly surprises Annie’s neighbour, Elaine who now enters the livingroom.
"Oh my! What’s the big joke? I came for some flour. The show, Love Journey starts soon, Dr. Nolan is going to pop the question!" Annie cheerfully grins. Cara now shows her the photo.
"Annie has clearly answered my puzzling question. Thank you for that, I feel so relieved!" Cara sees Annie’s radiant expression.
"How sweet, the bowling tournament! Your mom is amazing! That time, she had Martin. Oh Sophia, Winifred, Jeff. Nora had the flu. Hilary has this one with Frank. Sophia's precious note, your dad took this, special, good times indeed!" Elaine turns to look.
"Annie, I want you to have it, a reminder of the golden past. I enjoyed this fun, interesting afternoon!" Ken stands close to Cara.
"Ah, would you like to have some more fun? There’s a coffee, sandwich place in Westdale, it’s new Quack Shack, crazy skits, the Marsh family loves it, you will too!" Cara smiles, she knows that Steven is playing hockey later. She has heard of the, Quack Shack.
"Sure, why not! I’ll make one more stop, a diabetic patient
near my car. So, by any chance, you know a librarian, Lesley Jane Marsh, she lives in my apartment." Ken looks quite surprised.
"What a small world! She is my aunt, well, we have something in common, besides knowing Annie!" Now, content Annie lovingly winks as she hugs Cara who is so happy she came for a visit.
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