(A word of caution: this fiction series may occasionally stray from a PG-13 rating to an R rating. Proceed at your own risk.)
Like a glutton for punishment, the following Friday Sandy found herself headed back to Country Connections for singles night. Ginger was away on vacation, so this time her neighbor Elizabeth decided to join her. Elizabeth preferred to drive her own car, so she picked Sandy up at her apartment, they hopped into her black Chevy Lumina, and hit the road--bound for that hangout for fast-talking men and freewheeling women, Country Connections!
A non-drinker, Elizabeth had brought Diet Coke, and Sandy brought a vodka gimlet. That is, she took a pint of vodka, poured about a shot and a half into a glass, threw in a slice of lime and a squirt of lime juice. She had pretty much finished it before Elizabeth arrived. Then she added lime juice to the pint of vodka until the liquid was back to the level it had been before it was opened, put the cap back on, shook it up a little, and she was ready to go. Ice and paper cups were available at the bottle club, so she just tossed the bottle into her oversized purse.
As they drove up the highway, Elizabeth (Liz) asked, “So is the band any good at this place? And how about the men? Are there any decent ones, or are they all hound dogs?”
“I’m sure there are some of both varieties,” Sandy laughed. “You just have to have your BS deflector activated.” She was feeling much more confident this time; she had been there before and survived. And of course, the vodka gimlet helped! They laughed as they admitted they were both suffering from that state of unrequited lust known as horniness. The parking lot was filled with cars, and once they found a parking place and left the vehicle, the girls could hear the thump, thump, thump of the base. Sandy’s step quickened a little; she was anxious to get dancing.
As they approached the entrance, a couple in their 20’s came stumbling and giggling out into the evening air. The twosome totally ignored Liz and Sandy, as the girl leaned against the wall beside the door, and her companion began nuzzling her neck. Her giggles could still be heard as Liz and Sandy paid their $5.00 admission and stopped at the welcome desk to get ice and cups.
Jeans and tank tops or Tees were pretty much the standard attire, and Liz and Sandy blended in with the rest of the crowd. The table they chose was had chairs on both sides and sat perpendicular to the dance floor. As soon as they were seated, Mark strode over, a big smile on his face.
“Hello, ladies,” he opened. “Is anyone up for a dance?” Sandy introduced him to Liz and promptly excused herself to the ‘use the facilities.’ No sense beating a dead horse was her way of thinking. Liz was widowed five years earlier, and had dated some since Sandy met her. The two were nice people. Maybe they would hit it off.
The ladies room was nearly deserted right now, except for the girl who’d been having a neck nuzzling outside earlier. She was reapplying her lipstick, which Sandy suspected had been totally kissed off.. Looking at herself in the mirror, Sandy decided she looked pretty good for a 35-year-old divorced single mom. Her curly strawberry blonde hair was just long enough to touch her shoulders, and the stress of the last two years had slimmed her down to a size 6. Her brown eyes took in her naturally tawny skin, the raspberry tank top and blue jeans with satisfaction. She ran a brush through her hair, and after a sufficient amount of time had passed to convince Liz and Mark that she did indeed have to go, Sandy returned to their table.
Sipping her second gimlet of the evening, Sandy saw Rick approach their table He was blue eyed, bearded, and brimming with sex appeal. Bedroom eyes looked her way with a slow-to-appear smile that seemed to light up his whole face.
“I’m going to drag him home with me tonight,” Sandy whispered to Liz, which set them both to giggling. Here was a cure for “unrequited lust,” indeed! Sandy’s eyes kept returning to his; he sat across the table from her, about three chairs to her left. It was embarrassing. Sandy just kept sneaking glances at him whenever she could. Finally, he spoke.
“I caught you staring,” he said, with one of those heart-stopping smiles. Her face felt like it was turning redder than her shirt.
“It’s a ladies’ choice. Would you like to dance?” Sandy asked, in an effort to conceal her embarrassment. As he took her in his arms once they were on the dance floor, she felt a need to make some explanation.
“I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to stare,” she lied. “I was just trying to remember where I’ve seen you before. Could it have been at Dunfy’s after DH a couple of weeks ago?”
It was a lie, because she’d remembered that bit of information when she first saw him. Divorce Horizons (DH) was a support group which met bi-weekly at the Parkerville Congregational Church. Her fib did serve to stimulate conversation though, because they began to talk about Divorce Horizons and their respective marital statuses.
Rick had been divorced for a year and seemed genuinely concerned about the welfare of his two pre-school-aged daughters, who were living with his ex-wife in Florida. He hoped to go get them for a two- week visit next month.
As the dance ended, Sandy tried to put things back on a lighter level by saying, “Maybe it was the beard; I really have a thing for beards. I’ll try not to stare anymore.”
“Look all you want to, woman,” he laughed. “I love it.”
(to be continued)