"So, you think you might be OK, now? A different perspective, I hope?"
"Yes, yes, thank you, . . . You know I haven't gotten your name. I feel so . . ."
"No need to, son. You can just call me Dingle. And I won't be seeing you up here again, I do hope."
"Umm. I kinda hoped that—"
Richard loosened his tie and unbuttoned the top of his pinpoint Oxford shirt as the commuter train slowly approached the station. Streaks of yellow and orange foliage flitted by his window. He had no interest. He tugged on his necktie once more. The air in this railcar was always so stale, and he was subjected to it every night. Well, not every night. He occasionally got a Sunday off. Damn tie was so tight. His necktie was a noose, a noose hanging from the gallows that was his city-based office, which was about nothing these days but anemic sales, rocketing bottom lines, and layoffs.
The next-to-the-last weekend had now descended for the gang at Spirit Lake before summer ended and we scattered again to our respective colleges and "whatever" activities. Giddiness was high, which is saying something for the group of friends from the affluent Atlanta uptown district of Buckhead, but we'd been on the other edge of giddy every weekend we'd come down to the lake.