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“I still don’t understand why we couldn’t have ridden the rails down there.”
Wally pulled the bottom edge of his jacket out from beneath him after sliding along the worn wood of the trainbench to a position beside the grimy window and a view of the town of Poughkeepsie. “I’d like to aspire to something better than ‘ridin’ the rails,’ Eddie.” Wally pulled his new straw hat low against the sun hanging low over the Hudson.
“Well, it’d be a heck of a lot cheaper,” Eddie replied as he glanced down at the New York City ticket in his right hand.
“Respectability doesn’t come cheap.” Wally smiled up at the conductor who had begun his tour of the cars and handed him his ticket as the train gently started in a southerly direction. The dour-faced man punched the tickets of both men, then released a scowl at the two petticoated ladies who slid onto the bench across from Wally and his church acquiantance Eddie.
“Two for New York City, please,” Sally Darcy requested with a sweet smile as she held up a pair of dollars with one gloved hand.
Wally stood up from his seat, but waited for the conductor to move on to address Sally and her own church friend, Emily. “What are you two girls doing here?”
“Why, headed to the City for St. Patrick’s Day, Wally.” Sally stared forward with an immovable smile trained on the departing conductor.
Wally glanced back at the passengers staring at the young people in the car’s first row. “New York City on St. Patrick’s Day weekend is no place for two ladies.”
Emily leaned forward slightly from the back of her bench, daintily. “Walter Bayer, that’s a very rude and backward remark. We’re just two ladies who would like to see Manhattan and do a little shopping for Easter dresses.”