A Simple Day in a Scary Year

Submitted into Contest #76 in response to: Write a story told exclusively through dialogue.... view prompt


Creative Nonfiction Happy Friendship

"Do you think that's the best idea?" Britt asked, not realizing her voice was carrying into the kitchen.

"Why are you in the carport?" Sam asked.

"You can't stay here," she insisted.

Britt's back was to Sam while she spoke. "Why are you talking to your car? Also, if you are not driving, I think staying here is the best place for your car."

"Not the car. The doves, they're back and now they are trying to make their nest where my windshield wiper is," Britt moaned.

Sam went up behind Britt to hold her while he looked. Being a foot taller than her, he could definitely multi-task and get a hug in while he was witnessing the newest scandal of the week. "It's not a big deal. They'll figure it out when you go for a drive."

"I can't do that to them."

Britt looked up at Sam concerned and he could not help but chuckle. "Do what to them?" he asked.

Britt's voice had some gravity to it, "I'm not going for a drive today. I can't let them get that far into making their nest and then destroy it! They're already running out of time."

Sam’s chuckle turned into a laugh now, "How do you know that they are running out of time?"

"Because this is their third attempt."

"Third? How do you know that?"

"Because I chased away doves yesterday and the day before," Britt explained.

"How do you know it's the same pair of doves?" Sam asked.

"Yesterday I cleared away a nest out of our sculpture of a turtle shell. I don't know how they thought they were going to fit in there."

"Definitely not a smart choice," Sam agreed.

"And then the day before that, I stopped them from making a nest on top of the air conditioner," Britt gestured towards the air conditioner in the kitchen window. Sam went over and noticed a toy T-Rex standing on top of it. He went to go pick it up. Britt grabbed his wrist, "You've got to leave that there."

Sam tilted his head, waiting for an explanation. 

"I went on Google to see how to keep birds from making a nest on top of an air conditioner," Britt started.

"Information on Google is that specific?"

"Don't tease me. You know it is," Britt continued her explanation, "Anyway, they said that I should put something like a fake owl up to deter them. Well, I did not want to buy a fake owl just for this, so..."

Sam smiled and put the toy back, "Yep, that dinosaur is pretty scary."

"It's been working so far." Britt frowned with a look of "don't try me" which just made Sam want to ask more questions.

"None of this tells me why you are so certain this all happened with the same pair of doves," Sam said.

Britt looked at the doves on her windshield, pondering her answer, "All doves can't be this stupid. I'm guessing that these two are like kids of the dove world, completely clueless on how to survive. That's why they are making so many mistakes."

Sam went behind Britt to hug her again. Britt sank into the hug, just watching the birds. 

"I'm guessing you're missing your preschoolers?" Sam asked.

"I'm happy that they are not getting sick. It's important that they are safe."

"It still doesn't stop you from missing them," Sam said.

"Teachers are designed to teach. I have all of this crazy information that I want to share while I sing songs and read books out loud. We were working on writing our names before the lockdown," Britt lamented.

"I am happy to hear all of your crazy information," Sam squeezed Britt to him.

"Ooo, and I can teach you how to write your name so that everyone can finally read your handwriting," she teased.

"All I need is crazy information. I am happy to listen to you talk to birds and I want to hear any wild stories that you’ve forgotten to share with me," Sam said.

“Wild stories like about me surviving winters in the snow?” Britt asked.

“I would love to hear a story like that,” Sam encouraged her to continue.

“The first day of the first snow each year would begin with my sister and I begging our mom to let us play outside and she always agreed but we would have to wait. We had to wait for things that were reasonable to an adult and torture to a kid. We had to wait and have breakfast.”

“Insane,” Sam replied.

“We had to wait until we got dressed...warmly...unreasonable right?”

“Completely unreasonable.”

“We had to wait for our mom to finish doing what she needed to do which I cannot tell you what it was because it looked like nonsense back then because how could anything be more important than huge piles of snow in the city, blocking the street and making the entire street a safe playground because no one could drive down our street that day.”

“I’m pretty sure whatever your mom was doing was nonsense. Nothing is more important than snow,” Sam agreed.

“We would get outside,” Britt gestured what she saw, “finally entering a white blanket of bliss with just the barest hints of what was on our street. After exploring for a moment, my sister and I would always be drawn to the streetlamp that was ten feet away from our two-story building. We would climb onto the ledge of the base that was two feet up, hold on, and jump off into the snow.”

“That must have been amazing.”

“The noises of our cheers and of us hitting the snow would always draw our mom's attention, causing her to come running out into the cold, freezing because she was too worried to put on a coat, ‘Stop! Stop!’” Britt laughed as she pictured her mom. “My sister and I would moan as we obeyed.”

Sam began to laugh, enjoying Britt’s excitement.

"No more jumping until I figure out where the fire hydrant is!” Britt had to take a breath, she was laughing so hard now, “Every year this happened and every year the fire hydrant never moved. Even now, I can't tell you where the fire hydrant resided. Our street had one. We never landed on it.”

Sam marveled at Britt’s beauty when she laughed. She was so joyful. “I love that story and this is the first time you’ve told me it.”

“Sometimes life seems like a blur. I forget to remember the good stuff,” Britt shared.

Sam held her hands and studied how petite and lovely they were. “Everyday we are stuck at home, I would love to hear more memories. Learning about you is a great adventure. I don’t want to let our lives become a blur.”

“You need to tell me things too,” Britt exclaimed.

“I’m not nearly as interesting as you.”

“Well, then, step up your game. We’re in on this together,” she teased.

“Yes Boss,” Sam declared.

Britt sighed with a partial laugh and looked around the carport. She approached the car and watched the doves fly away. She gathered the bits of nest as carefully as she could and put them on the shelf next to her plants. She looked up and said, "This is a good place. You'd be fine over here."

"That is a nice place," Sam agreed.

"I don't think they'll listen to me."

"Come on, get your walking shoes on."


"It's time for us to go for a walk and get a change of scenery and maybe find birds that will listen to you," Sam said.

"Haha," Britt mocked and ran inside to get her shoes on. 

Britt grabbed some water and a snack and a mask, just in case. "It will be nice to move around a bit. At least we have this nice San Diego weather to walk in. The sun and breeze feel healthy, even though the news says otherwise."

"I think the news agrees that the sun and breeze are still healthy," Sam said.

"I mean...I mean..." Britt was stumbling over her words as she often did when negative emotions started to creep in.

"You mean you feel safe right now?" Sam held her hand, trying his best to make her feel even safer.

"Yes. I don't think I have any worries today," she said, "I guess I shouldn't feel guilty for taking a break from my worries."

"We all need to take a break from our worries sometimes," Sam agreed.

When they reached the entrance of the mobile home park, Sam asked, "Right or left?"

Britt looked around, considering both paths and what they could possibly encounter. "Let's turn right. I want more nature and less people."

Sam loved her logic, "More nature and less people sounds like a perfect combination."

January 16, 2021 03:53

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