There were more parking spaces available on 136th Street at two in the afternoon than there had been at six that morning and Joni was able to park just one house away. In fact, there was enough room for her to simply pull into a space rather than parallel park as she’d had to do early that morning and John was confused when she slipped Little Boy Blue out of gear at a spot seemingly equidistant from both the leading and trailing cars in between which she had been able to so handily zip.
“Uhmm, don’t you want to pull forward? You know, so somebody else can park too?”
Joni turned her head to look at her husband. “Am I to understand that you would like me to answer a simple question that would remove doubt from your mind and put you at ease?” she asked with a teasing, lilting voice.
“Well, I just thought, you know, that for the sake of neighborhood harmony you might not want to be known as the selfish stitch who takes up two parking spaces; you know?”
“’Selfish Stitch!’ Nice one!” she replied enthusiastically. Then in a passable Sean Connery declared, “Alliterative euphemism for one thousand please, Alex,” before continuing in her typical contralto. “I have a very good reason for doing what I’m doing. If you would like me to share my reason a little quid for your pro quo is in order.” Laughing she demanded, “Tell me what you found!”
John returned her laughter. “You know I am literally about to show you rather than tell? Why don’t you pull forward and I shall take you to the high precipice and the answer to the great mystery shall be revealed.”
“Why don’t you show me yours and then I’ll show you mine?”
“Yours is cuter.”
“Matter of opinion. Yours is easier to, shall we say, get a handle on?”
“No alliteration with your euphemism? Uh-uh!” he made a sound like a buzzer going off, “Sorry, that’ll cost you. Next category, please. You’re really not going to move forward?”
“Nope. You’re really not going to tell me?”
“Nope. But I tell you what I will do. I will take you inside, get out of these sweaty clothes and into something dry and then reveal to you what lies at the end of your arco iris; I’m getting cold just sitting here. How’s that sound?”
“Rainbow. Lots of hablarers de Español down in NOLA.”
In a clichéd leprechaun voice Joni asked, “So, tis a pot of gold you’ve got waiting for me, is it? Well, glory be!” Altering her voice to a harsher and less lyrical Scottish brogue she added, “’Lay on, MacDuff! And don’t spare the horses!’”
“I shall not cry, ‘Hold, Enough!’” John rejoined. “Come on, sweetie. This is going to blow your mind!” he said opening the car door.