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For nearly ten years, every time I passed by this spot, I saw an elderly
man sitting on a chair and reading a book. He was there every afternoon,
come rain or shine, enjoying his favorite pastime. Sometimes, if I'd
pass by at a later time, I'd see him packing up and walking slowly to
his house a couple of blocks from the bluff. Last week, for the first
time ever, he wasn't there. The chair was in its usual spot, but with
him not in it, the scenery lacked its exclamation point. He had such a
steadying effect on me for years, that I missed him and became concerned.
Today I went to his house and knocked on the door to inquire about his
well-being. His wife told me he'd passed away while reading this past
Wednesday: he just fell asleep and never woke up. He was 92. I told
her that in some way he'd been a part of my life too, and asked whether
she'd like me to pick up the chair and bring it to her home. She said no,
she'd left it out there so others walking by could sit and enjoy the

I hope nobody walks off with it, but in the long run it's inevitable.

So while it's still there I thought I'd record it for nostalgia's sake.

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