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Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A Blast From Her Past (Part One)

Finally Friday night rolled around and it was time for our long awaited Ladies Night Out. We had not been out together socially in a very long time. Life and its strange and unexpected turn of events had kept us from our usual routine, so all three of us were a little more than excited to be putting on our glad rags and doing the town (in our own sedate way of course). It was going to feel kind of funny without Helena, but well...life does go on, and as much as we sympathized with her situations and all, we girls just wanted to have fun!

Bonnie and Claudette came by for me at precisely 8:30 pm. We had already decided to get a car for hire tonight because we all wanted to indulge a little (or a lot) and it was unthinkable that any one of us would drink and drive! So while being good and treating ourselves to safe transportation, we were doing the city a favor by not drinking and driving. Dressed to kill, I locked up and headed out to meet my girls when the car horn sounded and I got Bonnie's text on my phone at the same time.

Our spirits were high and we joked, laughed and sang along with The O'Jays "Living for the Weekend" and other greatest hits during the ride uptown. Thirty five minutes later we were getting out in front of the newest restaurant/lounge/nightclub to open up; one that would cater exclusively to the forty and over crowd. Security here was the best, the food was rumored to be absolutely fabulous, and single men were supposed to be "at large". Everything lined up promising that this night would turn out to be all we hoped it would be.

So, after we were seated and had ordered our first round of martinis, mai tais and appertizers, we settled into comfortable chit-chat. It was during the middle of  particularly funny story that Bonnie was telling when she suddenly stopped talking and her mouth and eyes widened at the same time. Claudette asked her if something was wrong, and we both were becoming alarmed at her expression; especially since she didn't answer us right away. When she didn't say anything, I finally turned and followed the direction she was looking in. Then my mouth dropped open and Claudette following suit was the only one of us who spoke. What she said was " Well, dang Bonnie! Is that who I think it is? Never mind...I can see it is...it's Mitch Chandler! "

Mitch was the man Bonnie had dated right after her first divorce (a very long time ago). But, what had stood out about him other than the fact that he was gorgeous then (and from what I could see nothing much had changed there) was that he had boldly courted her for about three months all the while being married to a woman who lived an hour away, and to keep up the pretense he had told Bonnie he moved here to take care of his elderly mother. She had later discovered the wife and twin daughters and most of all that the mother was anything but elderly when his real life became exposed. This was all a long time ago but the sheer hilarity of it all when the breakup went down kept us amused for weeks afterwards and now we had no problem remembering it.

Mitch had been AWOL for a week or two when he finally just showed up at Bonnie's door one night looking all pitiful and incredibly handsome, but she had already made up her mind to break up with him first chance she got. Well, she invited him in and listened patiently to his explanations as to why he had been out of touch. He had then told her in spite of it all he was feeling poorly; a cold or something and could he have some symphathy? Bonnie had for some odd reason become tickled and started to laugh at his audacity. He asked her what was so funny and all she could say was "Dead man walking" and she laughed  till her side hurt.

A very confused and now very put-out Mitch told her how upset he was at that remark. She finally managed to control her mirth and while wiping her eyes she apologized for the sudden attack of the giggles. He got up in a huff and simply left without another word. Later on when she called me to replay the events of the night to me, she realized she was truly sorry for what she said and for some days afterwards she was really regretting her behavior. He would not answer his phone or return her calls. It was two weeks later when she decided to simply let it go; I mean she was intending to break up anyway so what did it matter?

While I was recalling this in my mind Mitch had spotted us at our table and was making his way over. Here he was...tall, distinguished and good looking as ever. And the three of us sitting as still as could be...

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