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Welcome to my story blog. I will post one new story here every day. You are welcome to comment on any or all of them. Enjoy!
                   --Lee Pound

Day 35 - Trials and Tribulations

Denny Jones walked down the stairs into the kitchen to make himself breakfast.

He lived alone in a tiny walkup apartment in Central Manhattan a long way from Central Park, a long way from Madison Avenue and a long way from the high rent district.

He opened the cupboard. No cereal. No anything that might make a decent breakfast. He slammed the door shut and stomped back upstairs. He turned on the shower. The hot water refused to get hot. Damned management, he thought. He rubbed on some deodorant and pulled on a shirt and a pair of pants.

Downstairs at the curb he hailed a taxi. It drove past without stopping. A bus came next. Full. Denny started walking. There was a subway station two blocks away. He arrived only to find a gate across the entrance. Closed for maintenance, the sign read.

Two hours later, he walked into the office building where he worked. He punched the elevator button for the tenth floor. Nothing. He waited. No elevator. He climbed the stairs, ten floors. He wasn’t in good shape and was breathing heavily when he walked in the door.

Nobody sat at the reception desk. He went into his office, sat down at the desk and turned on his computer. Just as it sprang to life, the lights went out and with it his computer. Should have fixed the external power source, he thought. When the lights came on, so did his computer, for a moment. Then it died.

He sat at his desk, puzzled. Maybe the universe was telling him something. Maybe he should go back home and go to bed. Maybe he should call in his secretary and find out what was going on. Then he remembered. She wasn’t there either.

He remembered he had a lunch appointment but couldn’t remember who with or where. That information was on his computer. His dead computer. Speaking of lunch, he thought, it was 11:30. He’d managed to waste the entire morning on absolutely nothing.

He took the elevator down to the second floor. What a wonder. It actually worked! First right thing all day. Maybe his luck was changing. The building’s restaurant was nearly empty. He ordered a hamburger and sat at his favorite table. The burger arrived, steaming and tasty. He wondered who he was standing up for lunch.

He finished eating and read his newspaper for 10 minutes. Finally he stood and took the elevator back up to his office. It worked. The receptionist greeted him. His secretary greeted him. His computer greeted him in perfect working order.

Now he was really confused.

He called his secretary in.

“Where were you this morning?” he asked.

“I had a family emergency. I hope you don’t mind.”

“I had a lunch meeting that I missed because I didn’t know who I was meeting. Can you find out and call whoever it was with my apologies?”

“It’s done,” she said.

Five minutes later she returned to his office. “I can’t believe it,” she said. Denny saw the shock in her expression.

“What happened,” he asked.

“You were having lunch with a salesman,” she said. “Oh, this is so awful. Someone tried to rob the bank next door.” She shook her head. “I don’t know … the robber ran into the restaurant and fired his gun. If you’d been there … the bullet, it hit the chair you would have been sitting in.”

“Was anyone hurt?”

“No. Except your chair. Lucky you weren’t sitting there.”

“You have no idea,” Denny said. He recounted his awful morning. “I guess the universe was trying to tell me something.” He laughed. “Next time I wish it would just come out and tell me instead of beating around the bush all morning.”

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