“Where’s my 3 PM appointment?” Dr. Johnson asked.
“He must’ve slipped out again,” the receptionist said.
“Who’s in charge here? You can’t just let patients leave.”
“That would be Gloria from upstairs, but it would be a whole lot easier to walk to the corner pub to meet Andrew. He’s having a drink and telling stories. It seems good for him and it’s only a block away.”
“I know what’s good for him,” Dr. Johnson said. “This cuts into my schedule.”
“Well, I can’t help you sir.”
Dr. Johnson walked out of the nursing home and down the graffitied street. The pub was covered with bars and neon signs. Johnson walked in. An old man was surrounded by bald bikers. He was telling stories and drinking from a pitcher of black beer.
“Oh, the leprechauns are devilishly tricky creatures. They’ll pretend to be your friend, but the forces of darkness are no ally.”
“Uh, hum…” Johnson coughed.
Andrew looked up from his story. “I’d like to introduce you to my psychiatrist.” The gang looked at the doctor dressed in a suit and tie. “We didn’t know he was crazy doc. He’s really a good story teller.”
“The best story tellers are crazy,” Johnson said. “Or should I say, chemically imbalanced. And he shouldn’t be drinking alcohol with his drugs.”
“I don’t take them,” Andrew said.
“You don’t take them?” Johnson asked.
“It makes my brain foggy and the stories don’t come out.”
“You’re late. We have a therapy session.”
“Can I buy you a drink?”
Johnson checked his watch. “What the hell. This day can’t get any worse.”
Andrew looked at the doctor. He was in his mid-forties and tired.
“You should take a break; too much stress isn’t good for you.”
“I’m the psychiatrist; I’m supposed to be giving you advice and say, you know your son’s ex-wife is trying to steal your estate?”
“I know that, but when she gets it, she won’t want it.”
“Because the leprechauns live there. They won’t share their land with anybody. She’ll be mad in two weeks.”
“But you lived there most of your life.”
“I know, and I have a psychiatrist.”
Andrew Johnson, author of The Psychiatrist and the Storyteller, is a psychologist and holds a Doctorate Degree in Educational Leadership from Seattle University.
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