By: Paul Beckman
The women in his life were killing Murray. His wife and her two sisters all knew what was best for him: Stop stooping. Have that spot looked at. Drive carefully. Drive more carefully. Pay attention. Pay better attention.
He never should have retired.
“Find a hobby,” Muriel said.
“Take up golf,” her sisters, who spent most of the day with Muriel, said.
Murray left their Boca apartment at six one morning and walked to the beach. Morning was peaceful. There were walkers, joggers, readers but no noisy kids and a pretty lady in white nodded him a hello. He went back the next day and the day after that and only went home for breakfast. He began recognizing the regulars, doing their morning routines and that included the lady in white, power walking.
“Why have you started going out so early every morning?” Muriel asked. “Don’t think I don’t hear you. What’s going on, Mr. I’ve Got a Secret?”
Murray didn’t answer. He wasn’t going to tell her his new hobby was people watching. He left and drove around until lunch time and instead of going home went to the, Just Like Brooklyn Deli, and had a couple of hot dogs that Muriel told him numerous times would kill him. He then went to the library and read newspapers, his newest hobby.
On his fifth morning, the power walker stopped by his chaise and handed him a flyer. She was a good fifteen years younger, pleasant looking and in good shape. She walked off and he read the flyer and then read it again.
I’m Sonia. Tired of being lonely? Want company for a movie or a bite to eat? How about some interesting conversation? Call this lonely widow who’s not looking to marry up and pays her own share. No hanky-panky. Everything’s on the up and up.
Murray sat back and thought about the possibilities of yet another hobby.