“You’re gonna let me drive this around the track?” Harry looked at Abe doubtfully. “You sure you want to do that?”
We were standing outside his Cabbagetown house and Abe had inspected every inch of the police pursuit car.
“Why not—Watcha gonna do—hurt it?” Abe was grinning from ear to ear.
“I’m told I have a heavy foot on the gas pedal.”
Abe winked at me. “Hell, Harry—it’s a racetrack—Knock yourself out.”
So, Harry got in the back of the car and we headed for the highway. Abe didn’t play any cutesy games with the flashers—even with Harry in the car—but when he hit the freeway, all bets were off.
“He was hell-bent on pushing the car to its limit and I was white knuckling it in the seat beside him.
I glanced back at Harry, but he didn’t look scared, only concerned.
Abe saw me and checked out Harry in his rearview mirror. “Not making you nervous back there, am I, Harry?”
“Who me? Naw. I just know this strip of highway and I’ve been pulled over here quite a bit—you’re off-duty, you know.”
“I know. I just want to burn off some of the carbon that’s clogging these valves—it sits all day at the police pound.”
“Yeah, sure,” Harry smirked. He wasn’t buying it for a minute and neither was I.
“We almost made it to Oshawa before an OPP cop in a black Honda Civic SI coupe pulled us over. “Crap!” Abe hissed under his breath.
I watched the lanky officer get out and casually stroll up to our vehicle. Abe rolled down the drivers’ side window.
“Holy shit—Abe Rosen—I might have known it’d be you.”
“How ya doin’ Frankie,” Abe said sheepishly, actually slinking down into his seat.
“This Huffer still can blow—I clocked you at 180.”
“It ain’t no grocery getter.”
“The cop shook his head. “Gonna cost ya big time, Abe—have to make up for them Golds you copped from me last weekend.”
Abe’s ears were red.
The cop paused, enjoying Abe’s discomfort.
“Tell ya what, take it down about 40 clicks and stay outa trouble.”
“I owe ya Frankie.”
The cop patted Abe’s arm affectionately.
“Ya, you do, Pal.”
“We watched him get into his interceptor vehicle and swing it skillfully back onto the highway, like a racecar driver winding back onto the track.
“That fella knows how to drive,” Harry said.
“Yeah, used to race professionally,” said Abe sulkily.
“Well, on the bright side,” I said, “we’re close enough to my favorite restaurant—I’m buying lunch.”
“Right on!” Abe brightened, and started up the car and swung back out onto the road.
“Maybe ya shoulda used your signals,” Harry grumbled from the back seat.
I suppressed a grin.
I got Abe to pull off the highway and avoid the usual burger stands. Instead, we drove to The Keg Steakhouse and Bar.
“Nice choice,” Harry chirped, “I’m starving.”
“It’s just noon,” Abe laughed, “you can’t be that hungry.”
“I could eat a horse—and chase the driver,” Harry growled. And he did—almost. He ate more than Abe and I and drank two draft beers as well.
“Jeez,” Abe said, “what happened to that myth about old people eating like birds?”
“I guess they do if they’re sparrows to begin with—Me? I’ve always been a crusty old crow.”
We laughed. I had to promise Harry we’d stop for dessert at a Tim Horton’s Coffee Shop on the way back, or we might not have gotten out of there.
© 2017 – 2018, John J Geddes. All rights reserved.