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English Short Stories - Cuentos en inglés
A Municipal Report - Part 2
Written by O. Henry. Transcript of radio broadcast. Source: VOA

I left the hotel at nine o'clock the next morning to find Miss Adair. It was still raining. As soon as I stepped outside I met Uncle Caesar. He was a big, old black man with fuzzy gray hair.

Uncle Caesar was wearing the strangest coat I had ever seen. It must have been a military officer's coat. It was very long and when it was new it had been gray. But now rain, sun and age had made it a rainbow of colors. Only one of the buttons was left. It was yellow and as big as a fifty cent coin.

Uncle Caesar stood near a horse and carriage. He opened the carriage door and said softly, "Step right in, sir. I'll take you anywhere in the city."

"I want to go to eight-sixty-one Jasmine Street," I said, and I started to climb into the carriage. But the old man stopped me. "Why do you want to go there, sir?"

"What business is it of yours?" I said angrily. Uncle Caesar relaxed and smiled. "Nothing, sir. But it's a lonely part of town. Just step in and I'll take you there right away."

Eight-sixty-one Jasmine Street had been a fine house once, but now it was old and dying. I got out of the carriage.

"That will be two dollars, sir," Uncle Caesar said. I gave him two one-dollar bills. As I handed them to him, I noticed that one had been torn in half and fixed with a piece of blue paper. Also, the upper right hand corner was missing.

Azalea Adair herself opened the door when I knocked. She was about fifty years old. Her white hair was pulled back from her small, tired face. She wore a pale yellow dress. It was old, but very clean.

Azalea Adair led me into her living room. A damaged table, three chairs and an old red sofa were in the center of the floor.

Vocabulary
step outside salir
fuzzy rizado, enmarañado
wear llevar puesto
age paso del tiempo
rainbow arco iris
softly suavemente
angrily con ira, con enfado
lonely solitario
dying agonizante
knock golpear
pale pálido, claro
lead somebody llevar a alguien

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