Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Calling Doctor Bill


 Strains of Pachelbel's Canon were echoing throughout the church when Uncle Billy and Clara appeared in the isle.
   I grabbed Cheryl's arm. "Well, look who just arrived."
   Cheryl turned to see them. "I thought you said he wasn't coming?"
   "I didn't say that ... I said I didn't know if he was coming ... he didn't want me to pick him up, so I just assumed he wasn't coming ... it never dawned on me that Clara could drive them."
   Cheryl waved so they could see us. "Doesn't she look beautiful?"
   I nodded. "She does ... and Uncle looks pretty regal in that double-breasted suit."
   Clara waved back and they started moving toward us.
   "When did he get that?" asked Cheryl.
   "I have no idea ... he didn't ask me to take him shopping."
   They approached the pew and Cheryl stood to hug Clara. "Clara, you look absolutely stunning."
   Clara blushed. "Thank you dear ... so sorry we're late."
   Cheryl gave Billy a hug and a peck on the cheek. "You look handsome, Uncle."
   I couldn't tell, but I swear Billy blushed too. He looked at his shoes and said, "Thanks."
   I stood so they could slip by to the seats next to us. As Clara passed I gave her a hug. "Cheryl's right ... you'll steal the thunder from the bride."
   Clara blushed some more. "I hardly think that."
   As Billy passed I grabbed his hand. "You sly old dog ... you brought the belle to the ball."
   Billy shook my hand. "She didn't have anything else to do today."
   "If that's your story ..."
   "It is." He continued on past Clara and sat next her.
   Cheryl squeezed past me so she could sit next to Clara.
   I sat down and leaned toward them so I could hear their conversation.
   "I'm so happy you came," said Cheryl.
   "Me too," said Clara. "I always enjoy being around William's friends and family."
   "When did he ask you to come?"
   Clara shot a glance at Billy, who was staring at his smart phone. She looked back at Cheryl. "It was several weeks ago ... I told him I'd be happy to come."
   A woman sitting behind Billy cleared her throat and said loudly to the man sitting next to her. "Don't  you think it's rude when people use their electronic devices at social functions?"
   Cheryl leaned over Clara. "I think she's talking about you, Uncle."
   Billy looked at Cheryl and then turned to the woman behind him. "Madam, I'm a heart surgeon, and I just got word that replacement donor for one of my patients has died ... I was making arrangements for operation."
   The woman gasped briefly. "Oh, I'm so sorry, Doctor ... I wasn't talking about you."
   Clara put her hand on Billy's arm and whispered. "Maybe you should turn that off, William."

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