Albert was proud of his new umbrella. Of 1970’s construction, the last to exist before modernization turned them to flimsy wire constructs which flip inside out in the slightest spring wind. He carried it as a cane, for which it served the purpose well. When the strong rains came over the westward mountains, black and swollen, he walked to the open parking lot with a smile on his face, and opened it with pride. But no matter how hard he swung, he could not ward off all the drops.

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