Wasington County Fair 2021

Love story in Barton: Part 2 – A Valentine’s surprise for Essie

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Feb. 14, 2017 – Barton, WI – It was past 5 p.m. and Essie was feeling glum … and she knew it was her own fault.

“Valentine’s Day and you’re still here,” said Jeff and he walked into Over the Moon to whisk his Valentine off her feet and take her out to dinner.

“Leave her alone Jeff,” said Deb as she hustled to wrap up the day.

“Can you lock up Essie?   ….and don’t worry,” she said patting her back. “Hank may be unpredictable but I’m sure he’ll be here soon.”

Essie twirled her single red rose; it was a prop she held while sitting in the window today.

The streetlights had come on and after-work traffic was picking up on Barton Avenue.

A couple walked hand in hand as they passed in front of the store.  Essie sighed and walked to the back of the store to turn off the lights and close up shop.


Across the street, Hank was lying in a chair. He was sweating and hoped no one would see he’d spent the past hour with another woman.

“Relax big guy,” said Amanda Baker as she steadied her hand on Hank’s chest. “I think she’s absolutely going to love it.”

Hank stared straight ahead. He didn’t think this was going to take that long and he knew was going to be late.

The buzzing and pressure on his chest didn’t break Hank’s gaze. He knew he wanted to do something for Essie and make a commitment to show her his dedication and love.

As the big hand swept past 6 o’clock Hank heard the bell toll from St. Mary’s Parish. He saw shadows on the wall at the store and he entered the front door.

Standing quietly on the hardwood floor Hank watched Essie meticulously dust under the Valentine’s cards and return them with care.

“Ess….” said Hank.

Her head popped up and she put her hand to her chest. “You scared the daylights out of me,” she said in a high-pitched voice. “What are you doing sneaking around there.”

Hank took a step into the light and began apologizing profusely. “I’m sorry I’m late – I should have planned this better, I just wanted to get you something for Valentine’s that would should you how much I care,” he said.

With that Hank took a step back and Essie put her hands to her mouth …..

“I hope you like it,” said Hank unbuttoning his shirt to reveal a red heart pierced by an arrow. Essie’s name filled a banner across the heart.

“Are YOU kidding me!” said Essie.

Hank was bewildered…

“You did that for me….” her voice rose an octave.

“I absolutely love it!”

And with that the lights dimmed at Over the Moon.


Tattoo courtesy Maverick Tattoo, 1727 Barton Avenue.

Build. Boost & Buy in Barton  – – Shop these local businesses

          Wisconsin House Woodworks

          Albiero Plumbing 

          Master Electric
           Lake Lenwood Beach and Campground

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