Birthday Present

NewMexiKen was a Michigander in those days, though young enough to still be just a Michigosling.

Children didn’t get driven to school then. They walked. Or they took a bus. Or they rode a bike. And my bike was gone. Fortunately it was Saturday.

Still, it was my 11th birthday and it was depressing to have my bike missing on my birthday. We looked everywhere.

Finally Mom called the police. She described the vanished bike to them. “There was? Where? Downtown. OK!”

Dad and I drove the mile or so downtown to the bike shop. The missing bike was reportedly there.

We went in and Dad asked about the bike in our name. Sure enough, there was one.

Trouble was it wasn’t my bike. It was a brand new three-speed English racer.

“That’s not my bike.” I protested to Dad.

“Yes it is,” he said. “Happy Birthday!”

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