Impetus of the Soul: Part 3

17 10 2011

A familiar car was waiting outside Carol’s house, parked on the street.  When she pulled into the driveway, the man that had been waiting in the car got out and walked to the middle of the tidy lawn.  Ben was the spitting image of Mike with the same devil-may-care posture and effusion of hair.  “Well, are you just gonna stand there with that foolish grin or help me in with the groceries?” Carol asked.

“Gramma.”  He said it chidingly with a laugh and walked the rest of the way to her, taking her arm.  “I thought I’d stop by and see how you were doing,” he said as he walked with her to the trunk.

“Beth sent you.” Carol said matter-of-factly.

Ben gave her a crooked smile.  “Well, she’s worried about you, gramma.”

“Beth is always worried about me, but she doesn’t need to be.”  She opened the trunk and started handing bags to Ben.  “How is your job search going?”

“Not too great.  Companies these days are looking for people with lots of experience, they aren’t very interested in new graduates.  It’s kind of hard to get experience, though, if you can’t even get the job that would get it for you.”  Ben started carrying Carol’s groceries into the house.  “They’re rehiring a lot of the retired rejuves.  They don’t have to train ‘em.”

“What happened with that fellow you were talking to last week?”

“Well, he said there was talk of  expanding and in that case they would have some more openings.  He said he’d get back with me in a month or so,” he said.

“Well there’s some hope, I would think.  I’d hate to think you got your master’s degree for nothing.”

“A lot of my friends are signing up for the program.”

Carol opened the door for Ben and they went into the house.  “Your mother and father sure seem enamored with the idea.  You thinking about joining them?”

“Eh, well . . . “  Ben set the groceries on the table and started helping Carol put them away.  “I love my folks, but you know how mom is.  If I can get on with JSA, I think I’d rather do that.  It’s just weird gramma; until a couple years ago, they were talking about what they were going to do after they retire and now they look my age and are talking about going off to work on some big government project.”

“It’s like Roosevelt all over again.”  Carol pronounced it Ruse-uh-velt.  “My father worked for the WPA when I was a child.  Both of my uncles worked for the CCC.  This program that President Merritt is starting is just like that.”

“Well, gramma.  Merritt may be old enough to remember the New Deal.  As a rejuve who know how old the guy is.”  Ben chuckled a bit.  “Best of both worlds, huh?  He’s got decades of experience and the stamina of a twenty-something year old to boot.”

Carol squeezed her grandson’s hand.  “Thanks for being there for me, Ben.  You’re a good boy.  I’ll be praying for you to get that job.  And tell your mother that if she wants to spy on me she should come do it herself!”

Ben smiled at her.  He could tell what she was hinting at.  “I’ll be sure to pass along the message.  Are you sure there isn’t anything else I can do for you before I go?”

“Just give your tired, old gramma a hug,” she said as she wrapped her arms around his shoulders.  “Thanks for coming by.”

Ben hugged her back and headed out the door toward his car.  He was worried about her.  She had seemed so lonely since grandpa passed on.  He hoped he could get that job at Jansen Sumner and Associates.  It would keep him local enough to watch out for her.

Carol watched from the window as Ben walked to his car, turning back to wave about halfway there.  She recognized the worried look; he reminded her so much of Mike.  “That’s quite a grandson you got there, Mike.  Quite a grandson.”

to be continued . . .




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