Footprints in the Snow

Footprints in the SnowThis morning we woke up to a beautiful white winter’s morning. The sky is glowing white with no distinction between the clouds and the sky. The blackness of the paved street is now covered by the purity of the snow. The trees glisten from the icicles dangling like ornaments on the Christmas tree.

This morning is turning out to be great! My mother is in a good mood and my brother is already outside shoveling the snow. All of Warren Street seems to be unified under a pure, clean blanket of snow.

The beauty of the white winter’s morning is disrupted only by the red glow of the police car lights. It seems that our next door neighbors were robbed last night. All their Christmas presents are gone – nothing left for tonight’s celebrations.

The police officer & my neighbors comes out of the house and are now following the footprints in the snow. They lead from the rear of the house, where the sliding door was pried opened, across the yard; to the parking lot and seem to be cutoff at the edge of the street. The cars driving by have obliterated the ‘evidence.’ Across the street, a similar set of footsteps seems to start up again. Oddly enough they seem to lead to Joe Pigney’s house. The police (under the urging of the neighbors) put two & two together and go knock on Joe’s door. Joe’s father answers the door not with a look of surprise, but with an expression of disgust. They are very familiar with the police officer’s distinctive knock.

The neighbors immediately start accusing Joe & demand that Joe come out. See a few months back their prized 1965 blue Thunderbird Convertible was keyed. Joe was nearby when they discovered it & started accusing him of causing the damage. They still believe that Joe was responsible. '65 T-birdSo now Joe shows up to the door in his boxers & immediately says “Hey, I didn’t do anything!” This is Joe’s instant reaction when seeing a police officer at his door. The image that Joe & his brother’s have is that they are criminals and we are friends with those “criminals.” The neighbors have always questioned my mother “why do you let your kids be friends with criminals?” My mother always replies “I don’t have any evidence that they are bad people.”

Joe does have one brother that has done time & in a small suburban town, once a criminal always a criminal. Needless to say, the police walk out of Joe’s house with his older brother in cuffs. They put him in the police car & drive off creating a trail of slush that uncaringly splashes over the driveway that my brother had just finished shovelling clean.

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