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Living in a small town
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I used to do a lot of fun things at the holidays. I know I shouldn’t give it all up, but sometimes I just don’t have the gumption to go "all out."

I wasn’t even thinking about Easter looming on the horizon, so all the festivities for that basically just got swept under the rug.

I haven’t had to go to an Easter Egg hunt for a couple of years, so I wasn’t too worried about that, but struggled with whether or not I should get an Easter basket for The Kid. He never cared much for the egg hunts because the other kids were just horrible little monsters, knocking him out of the way to get the eggs he was about to pick up, or they would go up behind him and take eggs out of his basket. Wicked, awful little people. What made it worse were the parents who thought it was so funny, while I stood there horrified at the behavior. Bullies in training.

Anyway, we ended up getting a nice big basket for him at Sam’s Club. Picked up one for the grandbaby too, although I’m not sure how fond her mom and dad are of letting her have sugary treats, since they are vegetarians. I know they’re both sweet freaks, so they’ll probably have the candy gone before BabyDoll even realizes it was in her basket.

I had just about forgotten that the basket had been squirreled away till Hubs mentioned we needed to get it and set it out for The Kid, who had been staying over at a friend’s house. It was the right time to get it and have it ready when he got home.

Even though he turns his nose up at the notion of the Easter Bunny now because he’s older, he did whisper to me one day last week that he would really like an Easter basket.

I was relieved we’d picked one up.

Once he got home and went into his room, we heard the squeal of delight as he saw that big hummin’ thing on his desk.

He even took the toys out and made Hubs go out to the yard to put them to use. Naturally, the set of paddles and the little ball didn’t last long but it was fun while it lasted (the plastic "screen" on the paddles broke after hitting the ball back and forth about five times), and the Frisbee got put to good use. I was just glad that he wanted to use them.

As the afternoon wore on, I thought to myself that I was sunk as far as Easter dinner was concerned. I didn’t even have enough vittles in the cupboard to make a crappy noodle dish. No noodles, no rice, no potatoes ... no salad fixins, no tuna fish, no bread ... what was wrong with me?

Just about the time for dinner came around, The Kid slid across the floor declaring that he was "hungry" and wanted to eat.

Hubs and I looked at each other and I said, "Taco Bell?"

So off we went.

Taco Bell was closed. Dangit.

However, the big neon sign on Uncle Chen’s was lit up loud and clear. We went in and were greeted by a fairly young Chinese kid with an outstanding personality.

While we waited for our order "to go," I started up a conversation with him, and asked if they’d been busy.

"Oh yeah, it’s been pretty steady today. Mostly sit-in diners, and quite a bit of deliveries."

"Do you guys deliver all around town or just within a certain mile range?"

"We go within about seven miles. Not much further. Most of it is right here in town."

"I bet you’ve had some interesting experiences making deliveries!"

He laughed and said, "You just can’t even believe some of the stuff I’ve had happen. Just the other night, I had to go down to the gated community, and I was standing at the gate punching in the numbers when all of a sudden this guy appears like outta nowhere, holding a kite and a bottle of Coke. There wasn’t much left in the bottle, but he was holding on tight to that bottle and the kite. He just about gave me a heart attack. He said, ‘I can’t remember where I left my car, and I need you to give me a ride.’ I told him to wait there, that I couldn’t take him through the gate with me, but if he waited right there I’d pick him up on my way out."

I was sitting there with my eyes


out, shaking my head, and Hubs was just laughing.

"So I get inside the gate," he went on, "and as soon as I got to the house, I called the cops. They were asking me to describe what he looked like, what kind of clothes he was wearing, hair color, all that crap and I said, ‘The guy is carrying a kite and a bottle of Coke. What more do you need?’"

I started laughing and he said, "He was gone by the time I came back to the gate, so the cops either picked him up or he darted back into the bushes!"

"That’s pretty freaky!"

"Yeah, it was. And then one night I had to make a delivery over to one of the hotels and this lady opens the door and pays for the food. She says, ‘If you or anyone you know is lookin’ for a good time, I’ll be here till Thursday.’"

That really cracked me up and then he said, "I told her, ‘Look lady, I’m just delivering food, not a party!’ Can you believe that? I took the 20 bucks from her and got the heck outta there!"

We were pretty well crackin’ up by that time and I asked, "Any scary places that you’ve had to go to in town?"

That got him a little excited and he said, "Oh yeah! Know those apartments just up the road from here - across from Motel 6?"

I named them and he said, "Yeah! That’s the place! I don’t know who owns those, but they got people moving in and out of there all the time, and going over there at night is really scary. I’ve been over there about five times already this month and I do not like going over there after dark. It’s like someone is always waiting in the shadows — like the dead coming out after dark. I never feel safe over there. It’s really scary and really creepy. I don’t know where those people come from but most of them are just kinda passin’ through ... what do you call them?"


"Yeah! Man ... some scary stuff over there. And I’m the only one making deliveries. No one else here speaks English well enough. Or Spanish, but I don’t speak Spanish either. I always go like this when I have to go over there..." and he made a face, which totally cracked us up.

Just at that, several people came in and a little tiny Chinese woman came out from the back with our order.

I said goodbye to our afternoon’s entertainment, and he waved big.

"Keep your eye on the local police blotter," he called out, "I might be in it one day!"

It wasn’t much of an Easter dinner, but we didn’t care as the entertainment was well worth having a mediocre meal.

The Kid summed it by saying, "I’m glad Taco Bell was closed. And even though I’m glad you got me some fried rice, yours is much better. Next year, though, you have to cook."

Or maybe we’ll have Chinese food. 


And jump out at him from behind the bushes.

Dressed up like Easter Bunnies.

With a kite and a Coke in hand.