Here’s a short story for you, enjoy!
Abdul turned away from his study of the hundreds of carpenter bee holes that were far up the peaked side of his two-story log cabin. He stomped around where he’d need to stand the extending ladder to reach then. Somehow, he’d need to spray insecticide in each damned hole and plug them all and then paint the entire top section with the bee-resistant wood stain he’d used on the parts of the cabin he could reach.
He went to the back porch and retrieved a lawn chair instead of the ladder. He could not see how to do it safely without build some humongous scaffold or something. Climbing that high with nobody to steady the ladder? No chance.
His disgruntled mind changed to memories of the cousins and friends he’d left in Chicago. His parents were gone, his brother gone, his friends gone off to college or the service. He felt solace in nature. When he saw this cabin for sale on 93 wooded acres, he snapped it up immediately. Since then, he’d read up on fixing lots of things and found lots of tools already in the garage. No matter how much work, it was definitely worth it! The phone he’d left on the kitchen counter started ringing and made him leap up. He never got calls anymore!
The guy on the phone yacked about housing refugees, about the immense need for generous folk to help. His cousin Natasha had done that, she tried to convince him that kids like hers needed safety and love. The guy had quit talking, finally restarting with, “Are you still there?”
“Yes, sorry, I got distracted. Look, I can’t take in kids. I live in the country by my lonesome and would not know what to do with them.”
“Latasha Beele gave us you number and already let us know. We have some from 18 to 21, from Africa. How about that?”
“Thanks!” He hung up.
Did that mean he’d given up? Too bad! Abdul thought about all the work he had not crossed off his list yet. And he still had his online accounting job to keep up with! On that note he rushed up to his computer just in time. He forgot all about that crazy call.
He updated his fix-it list the next morning with strong coffee. Stove pipe? He’d already bought the new chimney pipe sections. Why put it off? He made a mess taking the rusted piping inside apart, then taking a wire brush to the stove hole. The new pipes fit in and together upward just fine. Until he tried to ease the last pipe into the larger outside chimney section. Grrr!
The outer chimney was on the backside roof where he’d need that extending ladder even though it was only half as high as the peaked side. He jammed the ladder legs into the dirt as well as possible and sped up with his toolbelt on. He loosened the outside fixture and saw a snarl of rusted pipe pieces that had broken off. He deftly removed them and reassembled the whole deal. He eased over to the ladder and got a big surprise.
“Who are you? Do I know you?” Emo called down with a frown.
The man in a really colorful dashiki yelled back, “I am Ango, these are my friends. We are from Kenya. They speak no good English yet. You must be Abdul?”
Abdul shook the ladder a bit and held his fists out, the placed them on the ladder sides. They held it well, all right!
They all wanted to hug, so he did. The smiles and feeling of love gave him an old sense of family. Wow! He led them to the side of bee holes. He extended the ladder all the way and pointed to it as it began slumping to the right.
“I Kayla, we hold good!” She grinned, showing all her teeth. The other guy and gal nodded vigorously. Abdul smiled back. “I will be ready tomorrow morning.” He put his hands on his hips. “Let’s go in and I’ll show you the house and we’ll decide what’s for supper!” He hummed a Beatles song on the way in, shouting, “Let it BEE, let it BEE! Oh Lord, let it BEE GONE!” They all laughed.