“Hello. Cabernet or VO and water? What kind of a day did you have?” The bartender wiped the spot on the bar in front of her.
“I think I wanna try that white wine I see folks drinking. You know, with ice and a slice of lime. If the weather isn’t going to be summer-like, maybe a different drink will make it feel more like summer.” She opened her bag, found a twenty, and placed it on the bar. “It’s not very busy in here this afternoon.”
“It’s the start of the weekend. Schedules change in the summer. I like it a little quieter.” The bartender puts a wine glass down in front of her. “How are things in your world?”
“The usual. Well, the summer version of the usual, I guess. Kids are busy and happy to be done with school. I keep thinking things will slow down a bit, but that hasn’t happened yet.” She takes a sip and sighs. “Since it’s quiet, I have a weird story for you.”
She takes another sip, “So, I’m having some issues with a leaking kitchen faucet. I asked a friend for advice, and he said to talk to Jim Green at Ace. He said there isn’t another person in town who knows as much about plumbing.”
The bartender looked down to the end of the bar, “I’ve heard that name, too.” He grabs a bar rag, “I’ll be right back after I fill this order.”
As the bartender leaves to fill an order, she looks to see if she knows anyone in the bar. There’s a couple by the window, but she can’t make out their faces against the light streaming in.
The bartender returns, “You were at Jim Green, the plumbing expert.”
“Yes, so I’m thinking I’ve heard the name, but I can’t place him. My friend and I talked about the other place this expert had worked, up on the north side, but it still didn’t ring a bell. Anyway, I’d decided to take a picture of my faucet and head to Ace the next day to consult the expert.”
The bartender laughs, “You know what they say? Every plumbing job requires more than one trip to the hardware store.”
“They weren’t kidding. Anyway, that night I had a dream about Shannon, a gal I worked with back about 10 years ago. Her son is the same age as my daughter. I haven’t seen or thought of Shannon in about seven years. The dream wasn’t interesting, but I remember seeing her face and asking about her son.”
“Sure. Thanks.” Just then, the guy from the table by the window approaches the bar to order another round. He looks over and smiles. He looks familiar, but before she can say anything, the bartender goes to take his order.
The bartender returns, “Sorry about that. So are we on the dream or the plumber?”
As the guy heads back to his date, she realizes that she recognizes him from the hardware store. She laughs and turns back to the bartender. “Hang on. It gets better. The next morning, Jen and I head to the hardware store. I asked for help with a plumbing problem, and they paged Jim Green. As he walked toward me, I thought he looked familiar. I got ready to show him the picture of my faucet and explain my problem when it clicked. I said, “Hey, aren’t you related to Shannon?” He smiled and said, “Yeah, she’s my daughter.”
The bartender laughed, “I’m guessing you’re relieved to know your filing system still works?”