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The Baker's Paradise

'The Baker's Paradise' was the only confectionery store in the small town of 'River Bank'. Mr. Goldy Daniels was the owner of this lively place. He was a tall, lanky man who loved baking and selling goodies in his shop. His wife, Isabella, Was a small stout woman with a happy face. She wore her hair in short tight curls and had a dimpled cheek. She wore bright dresses with a white apron on them. While she and her son Preston served customers, Goldy loved his job of supplying Milk, Bread, Butter, Cheese, Eggs and home made Jams and Jellies to the villagers every morning. He went round in his van and sold these items of daily use from door to door.

Goldy - The Baker at Baker's Paradise"Hi! Goldy," spoke Josephine from her window on seeing the Baker's van stop outside. "Hello Josephine, what do you want today?" asked Goldy. "Well, give me a dozen eggs. I have to bake a big cake for my Ladies Meet tomorrow. I would also like some of your Garlic Loaf too Goldy. My daughter Stephanie loves them." "Here you are dearie. See you tomorrow." spoke Goldy starting his van.

His next stop was at old Dainty's cottage. Dainty lived alone and she was very grateful for her freshly baked Bread, Butter and Cheese everyday. "You are such a gem Goldy. Each morning I wait for your van to eat my fresh breakfast". "Thanks Dainty dear. Here you are. Your half a loaf, packet of butter and cheese. Bye and take care," Goldy set back in his van whistling a cheerful tune.

Goldy went on his way to a house about a mile off while Isabella happily served her customers. Preston was busy arranging the shelves when a young boy about his own age, a teenager, walked into the shop. He wanted some Cookies, Mince Pies and a Plum Cake. "It is my mother's birthday today and I want to surprise her by arranging a small party for her and her two friends." "You are the son of the new family who has shifted to River Bank, aren't you?," smiled Isabella as she packed the items. "Yes maam. I am Mickey. We came only last month. I must say your shop sells heavenly things. I love your Cheese Cake and Marzi Pan very much." "Thanks Mickey. Here is your packet." "Bye Preston. Come over to our place sometime pal." "I will. Bye Mickey."

Preston used to help in the shop after school but that his exams were near, he would be studying at home most of the time and Isabella was worried about managing alone. The door jingled open and in walked Hyacinth, the dressmaker. She wanted a dozen Tea Cakes for her visitors for tea. He uncle, aunt and cousins were coming to her place.

The next morning Isabella was surprised to see a sweet little girl walk into her store. She looked new. "I haven't seen you before sweetie, where are you from?" "I have come looking for a job maam. Madam Hyacinth has sent me. I used to work for her aunt but they are going to Australia and I can't go with them. I helped in the house and can help you too. Will you hire me please maam? I can stay at Madam Hyacinth's place." "Well, let me talk to her," said Isabella picking up the phone. "Oh! Isabella, I was coming with Maggie but Mr. Justin has come for his wife's dress so I sent her alone. You were telling me you would love to get some help around your shop. Do keep Maggie. She is 12 years old, trustworthy, polite with good cleanliness habits. You can give her the leftovers at your shop in return for her help. She doesn't need any money. I will see to her board and lodging requirements. Till my aunt returns in about a year and a half, Maggie can help." "Thanks a million Hyacinth. You are a pet."

When Goldy returned after completing his round, he was introduced to Maggie and was happy to know that his wife had some help. Next morning Goldy went to the van to load it. With the dairy items and was surprised to see that Maggie was just finishing keeping the eggs in the basket to take for his rounds. "Thanks Maggie", smiled her employer and went on his way. Maggie stacked the shelves, cleaned the top counters and helped Isabella bake the rest of the Loaves, Cup Cakes, Mince Pies, Cream Tarts, Chicken & Mushroom Quiche and Cookies.

The coming Wednesday was Goldy and Isabella's wedding anniversary. Preston had planned a surprise party. He waited till closing time on Tuesday and after his parents had retired, came to his shop with Maggie. They opened the shop and waited for Hyacinth and Jolly to arrive. Jolly was Preston's friend Astor's mom. Together they baked a lovely Chocolate Cake for Goldy and Isabella. The cake was hidden and they left around 11:30 pm.

At about 4 in the evening, Georgina, one of Isabella's neighbours arrived at the shop and whisked both husband and wife to her home to show them her new furniture. She kept them busy for an hour and a half, while the others got things ready for the party outside the shop door where there was a small park. A table was set with a dazzling white table cloth and on that was laid the best of the Bakery items. In the middle sat Preston's Chocolate cake. Cold drinks were supplied by Astor's parents and Georgina's husband had arranged the crockery and cutlery. Hyacinth had done the flower arrangement while Maggie had made special Egg, Chicken, Ham and Cheese Sandwiches. Cookies, Tarts, Pies, Patties and Pastries adorned the table.

Georgina came back with Goldy and Isabella around 5:30 and everyone shouted 'Surprise' and Happy Anniversary'. Goldy and Isabella were thrilled. There were tears in their eyes as they thanked their friends. Maggie flitted about in her new pink dress which Hyacinth has specially made for her. The party went on till late with lots of music, laughter and dancing. 'The Baker's Paradies' opened a bit late next morning but everyone was waiting patiently for Goldy the Baker to come in his van with fresh and delicious smelling loaves and other items for his customers.

Contributing Story Teller:  Amita enjoys writing stories and poems. She has strong editing and translation skills. [email protected]

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