It was a wisp of hair that first caught his attention.
He had been waiting there a while. Nothing to do. Nothing to pass the time away. Stare at the clock, stare away. People came and went. He knew his name would be called eventually, but it was taking forever.
She brushed it back. Her head was partially raised and she was looking in his general direction. He hadn’t noticed her before and he was sure she wasn’t looking at him now. She was simply brushing at a wisp of hair, tucking it behind her ear. She probably wasn’t even aware she did it. She seemed deeply entranced in something she was reading.
Keifer never did do much reading. Until now his beer belly, his two missing front teeth, and his choice of dungarees had served him well as one of the town’s preeminent rednecks. Keifer really didn’t mind. He liked his life of relative obscurity.
But she was different and he knew it. Unfortunately this called for action of sorts on Keifer’s part and he had no idea of how to go about it. So he watched her. Not directly and not all the time. He would just sneak a look now and then.
This went on for a little while until she got up in response to a name that had been called – hers. She walked over to the counter to pick up her new driver’s license while Keifer watched. Then she headed toward the door.
On her way out, Keifer noticed she dropped something and almost by instinct he jumped up to see what it was. She was already outside by the time he discovered she had dropped her brand new license. He headed in her direction, appreciative of the fact that he had a valid reason to approach her. Just then, he heard his name called.
After all this time his license was finally ready! He stood there, wondering if he should go to the counter and grab his license or if he should run outside. Finally, he decided to chase the woman down and give her the license.
The delay had cost him. Just as he got outside, she stepped into a car that had been waiting. Keifer watched it pull away.
Fortune smiles on all of us at least once. Keifer looked at the piece of plastic in his hand. It was her license and it listed her name and address. It even gave her height and weight. Keifer was pretty confident the height was correct, but he felt maybe the weight was a wee-bit understated. In any case, there she was. Her picture on the license was just as pretty as she was in person. In the picture that wisp of hair was hanging loose. Keifer would find her and return her license.
But not yet, not in his current condition. Keifer knew that in order to make an impression he would have to do something about that beer belly of his. He would also have to update his toiletry collection, adding shaving cream and a razor. He might even have something done about those missing teeth of his.
So he spent the next month getting ready. He bought some new clothes, visited a barbershop, ran a razor across his face. He even took a paper route to help work off the pounds. Although he was very serious about the whole thing, he just couldn’t seem to work up the nerve to go meet her.
It was after the visit to the dentist that his friends got to him at their Friday night poker game. They noticed all the changes in Keifer and spent the evening rousing him about it and daring him to produce the mystery woman. Keifer made up his mind that it was time to go see her and introduce himself.
Finding her house the next day was no problem as he had already driven past there once or twice, hoping to get a glimpse of her. He pulled into the driveway. He hesitated about getting out and knocking on her door. His palms were sweaty. Finally, he got out of his car and approached the house. He rang the doorbell once.
She opened the door. He just stood there. Then came the immortal words he had dreamed of saying, “Uh, I have your license.”
“No, you don’t.”
“Yes I do. You dropped it, back at the motor vehicles. I picked it up and now I’m returning it to you.”
“No, I have my license. I can prove it if you’d like.”
“Are you sure? I mean, this is your license, isn’t it?” Keifer showed her his prized possession, expecting that she would claim it for herself at any moment.
She glanced at it and said, “I’m sorry, but when I found out that I had lost it I went and had another one made up. They even took a new photo. Here, I’ll show you.”
Keifer waited while she left to retrieve her purse. When she came back she showed him something he hadn’t expected to see. It was a brand new license. Keifer stared at it for a while. It was her picture all right. The wisp of hair had been tucked in gently behind her ear.