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Our Perfect Day

“Oh, it’s such a perfect day. I’m glad I spent it with you,” Lou Reed sang in 1972.

Honey and I have had some pretty great days since then. I’m not sure how many we could call perfect.

Well, we definitely had one last Monday.

“It’s too hot to work outside, so it’s a perfect day for shopping,” my wife said, partly tongue in cheek because she hates to shop as much as I do. But she was right about it being too hot to work outside, and there were a couple of big purchases we needed to make and have been putting off.

The weatherman had given an iffy rain forecast for later in the day, which would be good news for my garden, but bad news if it rained out the grandsons’ playoff baseball game.

Honey’s plan for the day had it ending with us cheering for grandsons Lamppost Head and The 747 at a ballfield in Steubenville in their 8-and-under baseball league. Her idea was to spend the afternoon looking for a loveseat recliner and a new gas grill in that area.

Plus, M&M Hardware in Steubenville had called to say Honey’s Husqvarna string trimmer was fixed and ready to pick up, making it a three-fer and maybe a four-fer. Honey loves getting multiple things accomplished with one trip. It’s economical of time and gas.

NOT MANY HUSBANDS can say their wives love to weed-whack. Honey does, she truly does. It has something to do with making an overgrown area neat and tidy, I think. She is particular about her machine and the thickness and type of plastic string, using nothing smaller than 0.095 string, and a certain model of Husqvarna trimmer that had been recommended to her by a landscaping professional. She has two of them, but both were in the shop for repair the past week, making her a little depressed, like when her car is out of service. Hearing that one of them was ready was a great relief to her; she was all smiles when we accomplished our first task of the day by picking it up.

A new double (loveseat) recliner is something we’ve needed for a couple of years. Our old one was pretty beat up. We had looked the Saturday before at two area furniture stores with disappointing results.

Our expectations therefore were not high when we stopped at Hauser’s Furniture, but we found one we liked, the price was great, and lo and behold, they had one in stock. We bought it and made arrangements to pick it up the next day.

Then we went to Lowe’s to see if they had a certain gas grill we had settled on. They did, and we bought it, but when we went to load it into Honey’s van, it wouldn’t fit.

“No problem. We just take out four screws and it comes in two parts,” a helpful employee said.

“Better not. I got in trouble for doing that,” one of his co-workers cautioned.?Risking a reprimand, he did it anyway, and we packed it perfectly into the van.

“I love helping people,” he said, “You folks spending your money is why I have a job.”

“WE’RE THREE FOR THREE,” Honey said as we drove off. “Hey, want to try our luck at Rural King for pickle mix?”

I’ve been picking about 30 pounds of cucumbers a day for the last 10 days. Honey has canned quarts and quarts of kosher dills, polish refrigerator dills, and bread and butter pickles. We’ve given cucumbers to our family and everyone we know, and they have put up pickles, too. The grandsons are eating pickles like crazy and the cucumbers aren’t stopping but the canning came to a screeching halt because every store in the Tri-State is sold out of pickle mix.

Honey emerged from Rural King with a bagful of Mrs. Wage’s pickle mixes. “I’ve never seen so many different kinds and they have boxes of them,” she chortled. “This is such a perfect day.”

“Now, if only our boys can only win their playoff game,” I said.

The team our kids were playing, Steubenville Black, had beaten them earlier in the season 14-3, so our chances didn’t look good.

However, Teddy McKenna’s Oak Glen team took control from the beginning, building a big lead and shutting down Steubenville’s hitting with tight defense. All the kids played well, and our grandsons contributed with sparkling defensive plays and big hits.

In the third inning, though, skies turned dark and rain clouds began to roll in from the west. As much as we wanted it for our garden, I prayed for no rain and especially no lightning, which could end the game when our kids were doing so well.

A blustery wind whipped dust across the infield in the last inning, but the rain held off. Our team won 12-2, and a happier bunch of little ballplayers you’ve never seen. Families were just getting in their cars as the downpour hit. Back home, our garden got the rain, too.

A fixed weed-whacker, a new loveseat and grill, pickle-making stuff, the boys’ first-ever playoff win, and rain for a parched garden. Not big things, really, but each a bit of joy and good fortune stacked on top of the last.

“It was a perfect day, wasn’t it?” Honey sighed happily.

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