Story Room

Little Old Joe by Kieto

It was a hot Saturday July evening in 1952. In the far off distance you hear thunder clouds moving in. Just before six o'clock, the skies quickly grew dark and cloudy and rain drops began to fall. The rain fell a little at first and then it really started to pour down. I mean it came down in buckets!

The children in the streets who were playing stick ball began to run for cover. Women were pulling their laundry off the clothes lines in the alleys. What was once a dry, hot street was filled with puddles that were splashing up when people in their cars tried to make it home and out of this unusual downpour. Everyone was trying to get out of the rain except for this little old man walking slowly up the street.

Little Old Joe, as the people in the neighborhood fondly called him, was 94 years old. A kind old gentleman he was who spoke very little and was well known for generations as the neighborhood baker. He started working for his father at the family bakery as a small boy and had worked there all his life in this close knit community. People used to talk alot about Little Old Joe. They kind of felt sorry for the old guy.

Whenever he had to walk somewhere, he walked as if he was carrying a thousand pounds on his back. I mean to say, he was all bent over. So much so, his face was only about two feet of the ground when he went anywhere. He needed a cane which he had using for a number of years and sure had seen better days. It was only two feet long from being worn down all those years of using it. But it did keep him from falling over.

People thought his back was like that because he had to stoop down for so many years to pick up 100 pound sacks of flour.

People would see him everyday either going to or from the bakery with his little cane, all bent over, trudging slowly up or down the street. 'Step.. cl-click... step... cl-click... step... cl-click... step... cl-click'. You could hear that sound of the little cane hitting the sidewalk early in the morning on his way to work or in the evening while he was on his way home from work.

Folks up and down the street were peering out their windows that hot Summer evening as the rain started to slow down. They saw Little Old Joe coming up the street. Only this time there was something very different about Little Old Joe.

He was walking with his back arched, shoulders back and straight up and not all bent over like he had been for years. People began walking out of their homes and up to the old man as though they were in a hypnotized state. There must have been 50 or 60 people gathered around Little Old Joe with their mouths wide open in awe.

One woman in the crowd shouted, 'Oh My God! My God! You're healed! Little Old Joe has been healed by the rain!" Others in the crowd were positive it was the rain that had this healing effect on him and they were all chatting away like hens in a hen house. He stood proudly with his cane at his side, looked around and said, "Folks! Go home. It ain't no miracle. I just come from the doctor and he gave me a L O N G E R C A N E!!"

Moral: If you see a Little Old Joe walking in the rain, just say hello.

The End!!

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