By Bud Lemire
2061 (Part 5)
The next day couldn't have turned out better. It was a beautiful sunrise out my window. In fact, it was beautiful out some of my neighbor's windows as well. Which reminded me, that I'd have to have Cassie haul down their bodies with the flatbed dolly. Skeletons everywhere looked kind of creepy. Covid took them all. I hope they enjoyed the Sunrises and beautiful view like I did, while they were still alive.
I was just finishing my breakfast when Cassie walked in. She was dressed for a bike ride and had her backpack on. I finished my breakfast and made sure there was enough air in my tires, and we headed down to be on our adventure for the day. My backpack was rather light, but who knows, by the end of the day, it might just be heavier. Cassie had a beautiful blue bike, and as she got on it, I could see she felt like I did as we rode our bikes. Free to let it take us wherever we wanted to go.
Our main goal today was to check out Elmer's, and some of the downtown stores on the way.
As we rode our bikes down Ludington Street, it was very dead. I knew we'd find more human remains in the stores. We walked into St.Vincent De Paul's and found several skeletons there. No good bargains, in the end, Covid took them too. I was caught up thinking of all the people who passed from Covid, and almost was in tears. Cassie grabbed my hand and lead me to the front door. “C'Mon Bud, let's not let the past bring down our future.” She was right. I needed to live in the now. What a strange and different place Escanaba has become. I know many places must be like Escanaba now.
We biked down 2nd Avenue North, and I stopped to look at the house I grew up in on North 14th Street. When I lived there it was white. When my Niece Rhonda bought it, she had it painted butterscotch. Now it had a really nice green coat of paint. I thought it looked really nice. I explained to Cassie that this is where I grew up. She said she use to ride by here when she was much younger.
We rode by Sav Mor and it looked pretty dead as well. No sign of life anywhere. I kept looking hoping to find someone crossing the road either on foot or in a car or on a bike. Nothing! I could see Cassie looking as well. She smiled at me, and I knew she was trying to make me feel better. I knew she was disappointed as well.
We were almost to Elmer's when I decided we should check out the Police station. I peeked in and looked around, and Cassie went down to check the other side. She returned to tell me she found a couple of bodies back where she came from, but nowhere else.
“I guess even the police are human” I frowned.
Cassie responded “I have faith that we will find someone somewhere, if we keep looking.”
I hope she was right.
We got to Elmer's and entered. There were about four Self Checkouts there. I remembered when they first started setting them up. It may be the future, but I didn't care for them at all. I didn't want Elmer's to be like all the other places. But they were. Funny I should say that, but now Cassie and I would have to use the Self Checkout. Nobody was working, and no bodies were found. Someone must have removed the bodies.
Cassie and I split up to get the foods we needed at home, and when we met up in front, it just seemed so odd not to pay for anything. It almost felt like stealing. As I was leaving, I looked up at Elmer's picture and said “Sorry Elmer, it seems like all your workers are gone, and I'll take what I need and if ever anyone returns, I'll pay what is needed. Sorry to see the store this way.” Cassie turned to me and said “I'm sure he understands, and look” she pointed at his picture, “he's smiling.” I knew he always had that smile when it came to customers, but it was nice of her to say. We went across the highway, which seemed so dead. Usually, it was so hard to cross, but no cars were moving at all. There are always people that we may not get along with, but I sure do miss the life that was here. Seeing the cars going places, people going into stores, and so much more.
We went into Aldi's and Meijer and they were the same. Not a soul in sight. After that, we headed home. Cassie gave me a hug, and she said she had to get home.