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A coke and a smile 可乐与微笑

更新时间:2010-12-06    来源/发布:www.en369.cn    作者/编辑:英语作文网

I know now that the man who sat with me on the old wooden stairs that hot summer night over thirty-five years ago was not a tall man. But to a five-year-old, he was a giant. We sat side by side, watching the sun go down behind the old Texaco service station across the busy street. A street that I was never allowed to cross unless accompanied by an adult, or at the very least, an older sibling .

Cherry-scented smoke from Grampy's pipe kept the hungry mosquitoes at bay while gray, wispy swirls danced around our heads. Now and again, he blew a smoke ring and laughed as I tried to target the hole with my finger. I, clad in a cool summer nightie, and Grampy, his sleeveless T-shirt, sat watching the traffic. We counted cars and tried to guess the color of the next one to turn the corner.

Once again, I was caught in the middle of circumstances. The fourth born of six children, it was not uncommon that I was either too young or too old for something. This night I was both. While my two baby brothers slept inside the house, my three older siblings played with friends around the corner, where I was not allowed to go. I stayed with Grampy, and that was okay with me. I was where I wanted to be. My grandfather was baby-sitting while my mother, father and grandmother went out.

Thirsty?" Grampy asked, never removing the pipe from his mouth.
" Yes," was my reply." How would you like to run over to the gas station there and get yourself a bottle of coke?"

I couldn't believe my ears. Had I heard right? Was he talking to me? On my family's modest income, coke was not a part of our budget or diet. A few tantalizing sips was all I had ever had, and certainly never my own bottle.

"Okay," I replied shyly, already wondering how I would get across the street. Surely Grampy was going to come with me.

Grampy stretched his long leg out straight and reached his huge hand deep into the pocket. I could hear the familiar jangling of the loose change he always carried. Opening his fist, he exposed a mound of silver coins. There must have been a million dollars there. He instructed me to pick out a dime. After he deposited the rest of the change back into his pocket, he stood up.

"Okay," he said, helping me down the stairs and to the curb, " I'm going to stay here and keep an ear out for the babies. I'll tell you when it's safe to cross. You go over to the coke machine, get your coke and come back out. Wait for me to tell you when it's safe to cross back."

My heart pounded. I clutched my dime tightly in my sweaty palm. Excitement took my breath away.

Grampy held my hand tightly. Together we looked up the street and down, and back up again. He stepped off the curb and told me it was safe to cross. He let go of my hand and I ran. I ran faster than I had ever run before. The street seemed wide. I wondered if I would make it to the other side. Reaching the other side, I turned to find Grampy. There he was, standing exactly where I had left him, smiling proudly. I waved.

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