OK. Do NOT hand me that "TLTR" junk about this post being too long because it's a good post (for this blog) with a real story in it, and so you should read it. (I'm trying the old "best defense is a good offense" strategy. I came on strong to bully you into reading this. I think it's working.)
Last Saturday, the best birthday of my life, three of the 7 couples in our small group went to Brown County, Nashville, Indiana, to see the foliage and shop, which we all know is every guy's preferred way to pass a Saturday. You could almost see our husbands' giddiness as we made our way through shop after shop after shop after shop after shop after shop of fall wreaths and candles. Pretty soon, the excitement was so overwhelming, the guys nearly collapsed on a bench for three more short hours, proving the old maxim: "Shopping = Exhilaration!"
So these are two of my best friends, "Marilyn" and Diane. I've told you about Diane before; she's courageously making her way through a fight with cancer of an unknown primary source. (Have I mentioned lately how much I hate cancer to death and that someday, in heaven, we're going to lock arms and dance on cancer's grave?! Oh, yes we are!)
I've told you about Diane, but I've never told you about "Marilyn." What comes to mind right now as far as describing her to you is that she routinely mixes up the gender of her two dogs, calling "Petey" a male Yorkie, "she," and "Cookie," a female mixed breed, "he." I just cannot wrap my mind around this anomaly which rolls of her tongue, and believe me, I have spent hours asking her to please explain to me how this occurs in her head. She says it's because they're really more like "its" to her instead of actual gender-beings or people, so it's not a big deal to her. In fact, when I grill her about it, she just shrugs her shoulders as if there are bigger questions in life, but Internets, at this moment, there are no bigger questions for me, for this quirk to beat all quirks astounds me and eats away at my curiosity. So that's what you need to know about Marilyn, who is completely oblivious to and flatly disinterested in pet genders. Here she is with Petey the Androgynous Wonder Dog.
Here are the three of us girls at Abe Martin's Lodge, not to be confused with Abe Lincoln's Lodge. I don't know who Abe Martin is, perhaps he's Dean Martin's ancestor (probably a bootlegger, in that case). You can see that we are too cute for anything as we mug away for the camera, feigning tiredness. Because we all know that "Shopping = Exhilaration!"
I hesitate, slightly, to show the next picture due to it being of questionable taste and therefore implicating my moral impropriety and baseness (Wow. It's like that last sentence was possessed by Charles Dickens), but the possibility of your not believing the next part of the story outweighs my nickel bag of decency.
We went into the upstairs landing of the Lodge to have a look-see, and there was an elderly woman stretched out, looking for all the world as if she had departed in spirit and remained bodily because she liked the cozy fireplace and good conversation in the lounge area.
Lest you think I'm overreacting, you could literally hear other tourists talking about "the dead woman" in the lounge. I'm not making this up, as Dave Barry would say.
So of course I had to go check it out because I love a mystery.
And indeed, there she was, oblivious to everyone walking/talking around her. In person, it looked way more bizarre than it does here. Trust me.
We then went back into camp and went on a 2 mi. horse trail. My horse was cleverly named "Mr. Ed." Mr Ed. had an attitude, which he mainly communicated by slowing down the entire line, drawing the attention of the guide to the "blonde lady in the sunglasses" to give him a few kicks to keep him up to speed.
Uh, no thanks. I didn't want speed; Ed didn't want speed ... translated: "We don't want no stinkin' speed!" But we had to stay up with the crowd. Mr. Ed also constantly sighed and snorted at me, as if to say, "Lady! What did you eat this morning? A truckload of oats and gravy?!" (Pretty much, I did.) I just sensed that he was not a happy camper.
Jorge was on "Little Frances" right behind me, and Frances was like a 5th grade boy who had just downed a case of Red Bull "energy" drink. He could not stay in line or stop bugging Ed, who was in no mood for that "crap." So Ed dropped a "load" right in front of Frances, which by default was right in front of Jorge.
After the ride, I asked the ranch hand how old Mr. Ed is, and he said "eight or ten," which doesn't mean a thing to me, except I wonder if Ed is maybe having a mid-life crisis, which would mean that his attitude wasn't about me personally, but about the meaning of life and how we just go around in circles most of the time until we make our final trip into the barn. Mr. Ed is a deep horse, and that is another sentence I never thought I'd say.
The thing is, Mr. Ed needs to know that age is a state of mind, that "10" is the new "8," just as "46" is the new "29!"
Question: What's your favorite birthday memory?