Today at work, one representative of the Firefighter Baseball Team showed up. He asked me to help him find something for the lady he's courting, and I helped him as I've done before. He called me a lifesaver. I said, "No, that's you." He's always a bit bashful about being a firefighter (which is, of course, freaking hot) but I really do enjoy the visits from he and his fellow team-mates - and not just from the point of view of enjoying the point of view. Sometimes I get the feeling I'm their little gay mascot, but I don't mind. Today, the sole member visiting asked me how I was doing while I found him a few books for his lady, and I mentioned that my husband was away and that made me sort of sad and lonely, and showed him the little note my husband had tucked away inside my wallet for me to find when I went to pay for my steeped tea, double-double.
"That's adorable," he said.
"Yeah," I said, and looked all dopey and sappy and sad, I'm sure.
He gave me a hug.
Customers like that? Gold.
If you've got no idea what I'm talking about, this is a segue into the second chapter of A Coventry Christmas by Becky Cochrane. I'm reading a chapter a day - alongside a couple of other booksellers, Stickabutter and Johnnie-Cakes - as a fun way to take some of the edge off the Christmas retail season. I usually gobble this book on a day off every year. But this year...
Chapter the Second (Jake the Armored Truck Guy, The Mystery of Mark, and Four R's)
Keelie has her own version of the Firefighter Baseball Team: Jake the Armored Truck Guy. It brought back memories of the time Stickabutter totally embarrassed the hell out of the hot delivery guy (one of many, but specifically the hottest delivery guy) and the wee joy that retail folk get out of the arrival of the hotties. Sure, it's basically just daydream material, but it's important to have daydream material when one is working retail. Especially with a boss like Keelie's - who is growing more frustrating with each appearance and reminding us all of our worst bosses. Except for Stickabutter, because I was her boss and I'm practically perfect in every way. Unless I haven't had tea.
Chapter two also gives us more about Ivy's fiance, and what exactly happened between them, when she and Keelie catch up on some friendship time. I liked this a lot - and their discussion of the four R's - the four types of men in romance novels, each beginning with an R - and how they were pretty much doomed romantically might have reminded me of some conversations I'd had with friends in the past. Maybe. Just a bit.
Of course, now my own R is leaving me post-its around the house and making me feel sappy and happy and lonely and lucky, so I think my own R stands for Right. As in, Mister.
Coveted Coventry Moments:
Tomorrow, chapter three...