He puffed at his cigar in thought.
It wasn’t the sort of absent minded puffing of an old man tired from years of strenuous labor, but the sort of intentional puffing spurred by a mind much more active than his wizened appearance might suggest.
He peered at me from beneath spectacles that only made him appear more alluring.
“Whatchu staring at child?” He laughed at me.
I fought back a blush and managed a controlled “You’re just interesting,” in response.
He reminded me of a bygone era. One which people can’t live at present, but can only be experienced in dreams and memory.
His laugh lines smiled incessantly, suggesting his life had been filled with unsurpassed joviality.
But I knew better.
More often than not, those who appear happiest have often dealt with tremendous hardship.
My mind raced with curiosity intent upon discovering his story.
His right had ashed his cigar while his left toyed purposefully with an intricate topper perched on his cane.
Exquisitely carved, it looked as though this piece of wood had a more riveting life story than my own.
“This thing?” He caught me admiring his walking stick.
“I found it. Or it found me.
If you were expecting a heroic story, might I suggest you go create your own.”
He puffed again at the cigar.