The Chain Linked Fence Essay

This essay has a total of 2431 words and 11 pages.

The Chain Linked Fence

He was a quiet man, never bothered anyone and hated to be bothered. Walter kept to himself
mostly, no one wanted to talk to him and he was never able to find reason for
conversation. He was set in his ways, and didn't like change, in fact, he wouldn't stand
for it.


Walter had had the same daily routine for the better part of his life. He woke promptly at
6 a.m., used the wash room to brush his hair (what was left of it) and his teeth (what was
left of them.) After doing this, he went to his closet and picked out his clothes, which
always consisted of black pants and a blue dress shirt, like I said, Walter didn't like
change.


He was your average looking elderly man. The only thing that stuck out was his height; he
was a few inches over six feet tall. A once stern face was now covered with ancient
wrinkles; he had thick brown glasses, the same prescription as when he was 12, always left
a wide intent on his nose. His hair was now gray and barley covered his freckled scalp. A
bald spot rested upon the top of his head, he never noticed it, and he didn't want to.


After he would dress, he walked down the stairs ignoring the cracks and creaks with every
bend of his knee. His first task of the morning was fetching the paper, walking down the
porch steps and bending over to pick it up was now becoming a hardship he didn't want, or
need. After retrieving the paper, he would sit alone at an old metal table, starring hard
at the empty chair in front of him. It wasn't always empty, Helen used to accompany him to
breakfast everyday, but, she was gone now. He shook his head trying to clear his mind of
his deceased wife; he slowly took a sip of coffee while pulling the rubber band off the
newspaper.


Every morning, Walter vowed to call the newspaper and tell them to stop wasting trees to
print the measly paper which was now only filled with gossip stories about movie stars, no
real news ever made the paper in the small town. Walter made these vows every morning,
but, calling the morning paper wasn't a part of his daily routine, but making empty
promises had somehow found its way into his schedule.


Walter would put his dirty dishes in the sink; all the dishes were washed at the same time
everyday, always after dinner. After he cleared the table, Walter slowly walked to the
front hallway, which consisted of an old trunk and a dusty lamp. He opened the closet door
and pulled out his shabby coat. Here, he made another vow; he promised himself he would go
to the shopping center to buy a warmer coat, but, going across town wasn't a trip he was
willing to make; walking to the mini mart was hard enough, which is where he headed off to
next.


Buttoning his coat had become another grueling task which took his chubby arthritic
fingers a long time to accomplish, after he buttoned the coat, he pulled on his gray cap
and headed out the door. He was always cautious and would lock his front door, always
placing the key in his right pocket, it used to go in the left, but, that one had a hole
now.


Walter proceeded down the porch steps and once he finally made it down all six steps, he
turned to the right. It was winter now and becoming dangerous for Walter to take his daily
walk to the small store, but, it was something he had to do. He walked over the uneven
gravel very cautiously, the wind was unkind to the old man's frail body, but, Walter
walked on. Giving up wasn't part of his day.


Three blocks later, Walter reached the store. He opened the creaky door and stepped
inside. He always avoided making eye contact with Miss Hewy, a 78 year old woman who used
to be one of Walter's dearest friends, and who now worked part time at her husband's
business. He proceeded to the first shelf where he picked up three cans of tuna fish, two
for him, and one for the stray cats in the alley behind his house. He also picked up a
small jar of mayonnaise and a pint of milk. He purchased these same items everyday; he was
a very simple man. He walked up to the cash register and laid his items down, looking down
at his shoes while the old woman punched in numbers. Miss Hewy kept a tab of all of
Walter's spending, then mailed him a bill once a month, Walter liked this because he
didn't feel obligated to strike up a conversation when exchanging cash.


Miss Hewy bagged Walter's groceries while he continued to look down at his feet, she
slipped a package of hot chocolate into his grocery bag, a sneaky smile spread acrossed
her face, she felt sorry for him, especially on such a cold day. Walter took his bag and
headed outside. The walk home never took as long as the walk to the store, so it seemed
anyway. It's sort of like when you're a child and your on your way to visit your grandma,
getting there takes forever, but, the drive home, seems to take no time at all. This is
what it was like for Walter, he would never admit it, but, he liked the extra little
things Miss Hewy would slip into his bag, he never actually drank the hot chocolate, but,
he had a tin can full of the packets in his kitchen.


Once he made his way back up the porch stairs, Walter unlocked his house and walked
inside. Now came his second most favorite part of his day. He hung his coat and hat up in
the dusty closest, put his groceries away, and sat down in his study in front of his old
typewriter.


The typewriter was his best friend and his worst enemy all in one. Walter had been a
writer all his life. He was actually well known for some of his novels. He seemed to have
lost his talent; though he still tried , day in and day out. He was working on a story
about a magical land where animals talked and creatures of habit loved company. The
typewriter was his escape into better times, he felt young again whenever he was writing.
He would spend a few hours every day punching one letter at a time, cursing his arthritic
fingers as he went. When he felt as if he had accomplished something, he would stop and
prepare his lunch.


A tuna fish sandwich and a tall glass of milk. He placed his food on the metal table and
sat down, once again glaring at the empty chairs around the table. To take his mind off
his loneliness, he looked around his kitchen. It was an old fashioned kitchen, a huge
rounded refrigerator, a gas oven, wooden cupboards, and an old radio, which took up most
of the space on the counter. Walter looked at the clock 11:15; it was time for him to go
on his second journey of the day. Once again he struggled with his coat and hat and walked
out of his house, making sure to lock it of course.


Once he got to the bottom of his porch steps, he turned to the left. Walter pleaded with
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