She knew that a very special day was coming soon. Daddy had told her that he would help her make a card and that it was to be secret. The idea of secret was new and special, something she could keep to herself and not have to share with the others. In that small house it was hard to keep anything just for yourself, even the most ordinary events were considered fair game for discussion and anything special or important was up for public debate whether you wanted it or not.
Juno would often go wandering into the fancier neighbourhoods to have a look at the pretty gardens and bright windows, colourful doors and tidy driveways. On this Saturday she had found herself in the midst of a neighbourhood yard sale. Most of the houses had various goods for sale laid out along the drive way and the roads were thronged with bargain hunters. There was so much that caught her eye and she longed to buy the games and pretty dresses that the owner’s children had outgrown. She did look very carefully at the books but she knew that the lucky dime she kept in her pocket wouldn’t buy her anything even here.
At the end of Wilson Avenue there was a sweet house, smaller than the others and obviously older. It had gingerbread trim and a wide veranda with rocking chairs and a wicker table. There was quite a lot of stuff set out in front on old card tables. The books were all for grownups and the clothes were for old ladies. Juno wanted to see what was there even so. The old lady who was selling her unwanted things smiled at Juno and began to talk to her.
“Nice day isn’t it.”
“Yes it sure is.”
“You’re not from round here are you?”
“No Ma’m. Is it OK?”
“Bless you child of course it is. Are you looking for anything special?”
Juno told her that she had a lucky dime but knew it wouldn’t buy anything here because these streets had only rich people’s houses but oh how she would love to find something for that special day.
The old lady had had many a special day and enjoyed the joy on her children’s faces when they presented her with their gifts. She knew that both Juno and her Mom would have pleasure in the gift whatever it was. On the table she found a bright parrot pin in a green cardboard jewellery box.
“This”, she said hastily removing the $1 price tag, “is just 10cents.”
“Oh boy! Oh boy!” Juno was thrilled and handed over her dime as quick as she could.
As she walked home with a spring in her step and the glow of having a secret, she touched the little box in her pocket and smiled.