The Gin Bottle (fiction)

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Walter and Maud are settled on 25 acres located about six miles inland from the Pacific. Maud tends to her chickens, her garden, her canning, and her quilting. She’s content as long as Walter harnesses James and readies the buggy for a Saturday trip to town. However, the coastal winds tangle her hair and makes her eyes smart. So she keeps tabs on the Coast Guard’s Storm Horn. When she hears it sounding she knows a gale is blowing. She stays home, unless she’s out of pectin or vinegar or something equally important.

Walter is a logger. Working with a partner on a two-man cross cut saw. The job is demanding, but the pay is good. His only hobby is playing the banjo for the Saturday night dances at the grange. Most often, that one trip to town is plenty for him. But he on Maud’s beckon call.

By chance, Walter discovered that a partially filled a gin bottle can replicate the Storm Horn. Hence, Maud stays home when she hears it.

One given Saturday, after hearing the horn, she has given up her Saturday trip. However, she is out of everything – flour, baking powder, sugar. She must go to town, storm or no. Donning a heavy coat and scarf, she heads out to tell Walter to hitch James to the buggy.

As she rounds the corner of the barn she finds Walter blowing on the gin bottle.

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