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Finally! I got to leave work on time yesterday.

For the first time in over a month, I caught the 5:27 train home. I had eagerly called my wife and proclaimed with joy that I would be home before 7 P.M. As I found a seat on the train, I began thinking of all the things I could do with the extra time I would have when I get home.

I thought about taking my dog on a walk. I thought about making a real dinner for me and my wife–like pretzel-crusted salmon, served with a side of lemon-butter green beans and wild rice–instead of throwing a frozen Healthy Choice dinner in the microwave. I thought about relaxing for a couple of hours, reading  until the 9-o’clock news came on the TV. Drifting off to sleep, I even dreamed about soaking myself in a warm bath, complete with aromatic bath salts.

I awoke at WoodDale and looked at my watch: the train was right on schedule. The train would arrive in Bartlett  in about 15 minutes, and I began to plan the elegant dinner that I would make to greet my wife when she got home.

The train slowed down after we passed over I-290. But, we were still moving along, and I calculated that I would still get home early enough to surprise my wife with a home-cooked meal. We passed through Schaumburg, and the train stopped, but only for a moment. As soon as an inbound train passed, we started moving again.

We passed through Hannover Park, and the train stopped. And we waited…

About twenty minutes later, my cell phone rang. My wife had just arrived at home. “Where are you?” she asked. “I thought you were going to be home before 7?”

“The train is stopped,” I said, “I don’t know what time I’ll be home.”

After some time, the train finally pulled into Bartlett, a half-hour late. I called my wife and let her know that I would be home in a few minutes.

“Would you like me to throw something in the microwave?” she asked.

“Yeah, that would be great,” I said with a yawn. Maybe I would still have time for that bath…


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