Back to the Brown and Keller Building to see if I find that mysterious Cab 46. It took awhile but there it was tucked into a parking space that had been squeezed into what once was a dead-end alley. On one side, Betty's Beauty Parlor, the other, Bunky's Donuts. Finally, an easy choice.
Bunky's was an eight stool, four booth hole in the wall that had a reputation for decent donuts but had the best coffee in town. There had been rumors that the secret was that Bunky would soak his coffee beans overnight in Dewar's Scotch. Who knew. Not too many folks actually sat down in Bunky's, most would simply dash in and get a cup of java to go.
Bunky? A retired Navy Chief who had to do something after serving his twenty-five. Short, squat, gravelly voiced, rough but decent fellow, never married and never would be. Bunky had a bulldog that looked uncomfortably like him. The Commodore, the Bulldog, always sat dead center in the door that led to the backroom causing Bunky to always have to step over him a thousand times in the course of any given day.
"Coffee? Got some hot blueberry donuts?"
"Just coffee. Bunky, I'm looking for the driver of that Checker cab parked in your lot."
"Oh, Flanagan. He's probably still sleeping in room at the Y. He parks his car here, picks up any messages, the lady from Keller and Brown leaves here for him. Some nights, the old Mick gets a little overloaded and has to sleep it off."
"Bunk, what does he look like?"
"Old geezer. Big fella, full head of gray hair, has a tattoo on his neck you can see peeking out of his collar. Looks like some sort of chain. Everybody around here calls him ol' Mick. Not sure that his real name. Harmless old guy."
"Bunk, what's he do?"
"Not much. Picks people up at the train station, drives the lawyers town to the courthouse,delivers packages here and there, stuff like that."
"Thanks, Bunk. Good coffee."
As I began to leave, Bunky asked, "Should I tell him you're looking for him?"
"No need, Bunky, I'll find him."
I thought the slow, sure way the best so that cab and I spent some time together that day. It turned out to be far more than I wanted, a good hour at least. Thank God for Bunk's coffee. You know I think it does have just hint of Scotch in it. Eventually up walked old Mac. I wasn't sure about Bnk's coffee beans, but It was clear that the old cab driver had been soaking in Scotch for many a year.