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Stolen Ukulele

November 4, 2011

I bought a ukulele from a music shop. I passed another music shop on the way home. I thought I had better buy some extra strings for my new purchase. I had been tinkering with the ukulele while walking, and nearly walked into the shop with the ukulele in my hand. I thought that was probably a silly idea; I didn’t want the owner thinking it was from his shop. I started to put the ukulele back into its’ cardboard case. The shop owner came out and accused me of stealing.
“What on earth is a low-life like you going to do with a stolen ukulele?” he asked, “You won’t be able to sell it.”
“I didn’t steal it. I bought it at another shop,” I said.
He didn’t believe me. No matter what I said, he still thought that I had stolen it.
“What if I showed you the receipt?” I asked.
“Then I would believe you.”
I opened my bag. It was full of old, crumpled receipts. I opened a couple. They were from ATMs, the seven-eleven, the library, and one from a sponge cake shop.
I thought I would try a different tactic. Instrument shops must have a record of every instrument they stock and sell.
“If the ukulele is really for sale at your shop, you’ll have the registration number on you computer, right?” I said.
He looked on his computer. He couldn’t find the number, and apologized. He felt bad, and to make up for it he showed me rare instruments in the shop. He took a square, colorful ukulele from the shelf and played me a song on it. I fumbled along on my ukulele even though it wasn’t tuned properly.
When I went back outside, I saw that it had rained.
The ukulele box was wet.

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