Welcome to the Doo-Dah Counter
Richard, Issue #7
It was about a year ago that the forty-year-old man scooted down from the other end of The Counter to comment on the first Counter Chat, which he had just read. Whatever he said must have been encouraging, because this is the seventh issue. It makes my day if I happen to see a grin break out on the face of someone reading one. I never did know quite what to call the blurbs until Timirie recently came up with “Counter Chats.” It seems to fit, and I like it. In the ensuing conversation he let it be known that he designed computer software for Wichita State University and for other contracted projects. He was considering giving up the university work, because he could earn considerably more money elsewhere, and he was concerned about preparing for a possible family and for retirement. For altruistic reasons, though, he really did not want to discontinue the work he was doing at the university. We talked until after closing time, and when we left, he took a spin around the parking lot on my 24-speed Terratrike. I thought he rode quite well for a youngster.
This was the third time at the Doo-Dah for the young fellow next to me. He was wearing one of those stylish baseball caps with the bill in the back. I wish they made them like that for older people, but I haven’t seen any. It would make it much easier to look up. He has been driving a delivery truck at night for six years for Casey’s General Store. Casey’s has four locations in Wichita and six in our suburbs. They tend to build stores in small towns. It may surprise you to learn that, nation-wide, they have about three times as many stores as there are Quik Trips. Along with gasoline and groceries, they specialize in selling pizza. My new friend was having the “bat out of hell” meat loaf, which he thought was even better than his former favorite in one of the more expensive restaurants on the east side. I was trying the chicken fried chicken, which was recently added to the menu. You will like it.
A couple of weeks later, I got a spot at The Counter next to the Kwik Shop District Manager for the state of Kansas. He verified the information about Casey’s in the preceding paragraph.
This was my second time for having the pleasure of chatting with the 62-year-old woman who is retired from 33 years as Postmaster of Colwich (a portmanteau [use the word three times and it’s yours] derived from the Colorado and Wichita Railroad). Centered around 53rd St. North and 167th St. West, Colwich is a Wichita suburb which covers about 1.31 square miles, has approximately 1310 residents, and is 131 years old. She has spent the past year working with her sister to sell homes. Her contacts are mainly people who know her.
I talked to a young fellow who was leaving for his home in Las Vegas the next day. He was here as a mechanic on the F-16 Falcon Fighters being flown in the air show. I heard two or three of the planes flying over my house later and wanted to run out to take a look, but my 87-year-old legs have retired from running, and F-16s, which can fly at twice the speed of sound, are unable to wait around for walking. They had to settle for being listened to, which worked out fine for everybody.
It was Tuesday. His two older sisters, ages 6 and 8, were in school. Their daddy, who loves to whistle at work and away, was working on the roof or siding of someone’s home. The 4-year-old and his mother were holding down the north end of The Doo-Dah Counter. He goes to pre-school three hours a day, so in order to be with him, she recently resigned from her job at Coleman, where she was involved in selling large amounts of products to Latin American countries. It was obvious that he came from a happy family. He brightened The Counter. You should have been there. When his two huge pancakes came, garnished with blueberries, his mother mentioned that blueberries, which he loves, were helpful with his asthma. Both his and her eyes lit up when the waitress brought him a cup of them. As you might guess, most of his breakfast went home with them in a supper box. His mother had figured out how, with little effort, to keep him happy for two or three more meals.