Rich and Tom went to bed. Tom had a nice single bed with a mahogany head and footboard. A steel framed cot was set up in the room for Rich.
They talked for a while. Rich sensed something was on Tom’s mind. He hesitated to respond to anything Rich said.
“You were rude and snotty with my parents,” Tom said uncomfortably.
Rich thought, “His parents told him I should be informed they did not approve of my conduct.”
“It’s better than treating old ladies like crap.” Rich paused. He was certain that he would be asked to leave or his invitation to the picnic might be revoked. “You should be ashamed,” Rich added.
Rich laid in bed for a while thinking about the day’s activities and that poor old lady. “I’m convinced they were trying to hasten her inevitable and imminent death. The insensitive treatment of the grandmother is unconscionable. I know little about myself and how I fit. I don’t understand my parents or who they are any better than before. One thing I know for certain – for all my dad’s failures and ruthlessness, he would not treat a parent that way. I know we are better than the Miles’.”
Rich and Tom had a good time at the picnic and amusement park. They rode rides, played games, and talked to girls. There was a certain unutterable communication between them. Their looks were vacant and their laughter was shallow. Their friendship from that point onward would be superficial at best.
Rich did not call him the rest of the summer and Tom did not call Rich.