He rushed through final preparations. He normally took the local train to work, but today he wanted to meet the 6:10 Express, and he needed time to walk to the station. Usually he drove whenever he went out, but he was sure his wife would need the car today. He arrived with 15 minutes to spare and, despite the cold, sat alone on the bench outside to wait.
Moving to a gated community in a picturesque town a mere 45 minutes from the city was the best decision he made all those early years ago. He read the paper and drank coffee on the train to his job and his six-figured salary; his wife stayed home with the children. They were comfortable and did not worry about the price of anything. House needs a new roof? Done. Car needs work? Write a check.
Investing most of their money with a respected Wall Street guru was the worst decision he made all those years later. He called it financial planning. The legal authorities called it a greedy scam of such magnitude, no one could hope to recuperate losses.
The train's approaching whistle startled him away from his thoughts. He stood and walked to the edge of the platform. The train would not stop, of course, but he did not need that. He inhaled deeply.
The shout from the stranger made him turn.
“Be careful! What are you doing? This train doesn't stop here, it's express all the way!”
Norman blinked and moved back a few steps. The stranger grabbed his arm and pulled him further away.
“Jeesh, Don't understand you people. You like to stand so close to the end. Could get hurt or worse.”
“You're home early, hon. Slow day at the office?” Ada said as her husband came in through the back kitchen door.
Norman placed the grocery bag on the table, took out a package, and leaned over to kiss her smile.
“Yep...I figured I could get a head start on crisping the bacon. Forgot to do it before.”
Ada stood and walked over to the pots and pans hanging on the wall next to the stove. “Oh, is it soup night, then?” She handed him the cast iron skillet.
“I thought it was. For you.”
She laughed. “You mean for us, or aren't you having some?”
Norman nodded and turned to the stove. “Who could turn down Grannie's Sperr's chowder on such a night.”
As he crumbled the bacon, he thought about tomorrow. He hoped he would find another good reason to come home then too.