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FlashNano Day 1: End of the Day

November 1, 2017

What is FlashNano: “Created by Nancy Stohlman in 2012 in solidarity with NaNoWriMo. FlashNano is in its 6th year!” Click HERE to learn more.

I just learned of FlashNano a few days ago on Facebook and thought it sounded fun. The idea is instead of taking part in NaNoWriMo and writing a novel in 30 days, we write a piece of flash fiction every day for 30 days.

Please pardon any typos or grammatical errors. My goal at this point is to just get the story down. I can worry about fine-tuning and editing later if I want. Thanks for reading!

Day 1 prompt: Write a story that takes place on a school bus

End of the Day (545 words)

It’s the end of the work day that’s the worst for me. Work, yeah, an old fella like me shouldn’t be working anymore, but what can I say. This is life and here I am.

Dunham Student Transportation isn’t a bad place to work and I don’t mind emptying the waste baskets and depending on the day, I can give or take mopping up the toilets. The vacuuming pulls on this old back of mine, but it’s really not so bad. They bought me one of those lightweight vacuums and it’s pretty easy to push around. And truth be told, by the time I get around to vacuuming the office, most everyone is gone for the day so if my back is hollering at me, I can fudge and not go into every corner or under every desk and no one’s the wiser.

But the end of the day; that’s when I have to sweep out the school bus and God as my witness I’m not on that bus for 10 seconds before the memories start coming back. It was a long time ago; lots of years, too many to share with you, but I’ll tell you that back then it was different and we were nothing like the kids riding the school bus today. We wore our jeans loose and cuffed at the ankles with our hair combed back and greased down. And we – well, for the most part – we picked up after ourselves and left the bus clean. Or a lot cleaner than kids today.

I’d sit around the middle of the bus because I wanted to be as close to her as I could. Her name was Lisa Yaeger and to this day she can make this old heart skip a beat and like I said, I’m not on this bus sweeping up candy wrappers and trash 10 seconds before she doesn’t enter my mind. Brown hair just past her shoulders held back with a ribbon or a bow. Always a ribbon or a bow; sometimes red, sometimes blue and sometimes green, sometimes a combination of all of them. But to be honest I didn’t pay so much attention to her hair as I did her eyes because Lisa Yaeger had the greenest eyes I’d ever – even to this day – seen. It’s not like she turned them my way very much, but when she did, and when she smiled, I felt things inside me melt.

We talked once in a while, Lisa Yaeger and I, but that was it. I never asked her to a movie or a dance and I never came close, although I can’t tell you how many times I dreamed about it, to asking her to go steady. It’s funny when I think back on it all. Do kids even go steady anymore? So I didn’t talk a lot to Lisa Yaeger but don’t feel bad for me. I’ve lived a good life – even if I’m still working cleaning office toilets and school busses at my age – and I’ve lived a happy life. But damn if I can’t step onto this here bus without thinking back to Lisa Yaeger and those beautiful green eyes. And I’d be lying if I said I can’t help but wonder: what if.

– End


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