Facing a new year sometimes brings up memories related to your future. Okay, let me do some ‘splainin. Over the holidays we bought plane tickets for March to go to Texas where my brother, Tim, and his lovely wife, Elizabeth, live. Two of my sisters and one brother-in-law will be joining us from California. Hubby will be coming along, too. We all need this visit. Haven’t seen Tim since my mom died and we've only driven through Texas, never really explored the place. We'll be in McKinney. Look it up.
So this morning a memory of another time we were all together popped into my Monday morning noggin. It was a mystery dinner party. John and I had flown out to Cali and one of my sisters set up the event. It was to be at a relatively new restaurant in Irvine and not too pricey. Mom was still with us and she came along.
The actors buzzed all around us as we took our seats at the table and it was fun to guess what part they’d play in the upcoming mystery presentation. A “waitress” came to ask our names and made a list as she went around the table. Ooo, what was this? My sisters gave their names and then the waitress came to hubby, sitting there with a grin on his face. Did he give his own name? Ha! Mr. Prankster told the woman he was Martin Van Buren. Sparked by this bit of creativeness, we all began to imagine who we might rather be. I chose Scarlett O’Hara and my sister, Wendy, said Meg Ryan. Mom’s turn was next but before she could speak Tim blurted out, "Ma Barker!"
Oh, Tim. The look she gave him could have melted a glacier – a really big glacier. She’d wanted to be someone far more glamorous, Ava Gardner maybe. Tsk, tsk. Have another beer Tim. And he did. The last drop slid down his throat just as a buxom waitress leaned over to ask him what he’d like for dinner. Poor guy, recently divorced, he had a brief lusty moment and told us later about the “two things” he missed most about his ex.
After dinner there was the mystery to play out. Fun stuff. We watched and laughed and applauded as the acting troupe scurried around the room trying to solve the case. At the end of the performance there was a t-shirt contest. Wait. A drawing for a t-shirt – that’s what I meant. When Ms. Buxom got up to pull the winner’s name out of the hat, she hesitated. She let the guy who’d just played Lord Peter Whimsey look at the name and then she stammered, “Meg Ryan.”
Wendy’s hand shot up. “Yay!” (She’s the family Bingo player and has an uncanny knack for winning). We all grinned at her stroke of luck. She jumped up to claim her prize, but not before Buxom zipped over to the table to furiously whisper, “What’s your real name!” Guess she was onto us. Martin Van Buren enjoyed a quiet belly laugh.
We had a ball that night,just being our nutty selves, and I sure hope I can bring back from Texas another humdinger or two for your reading pleasure. I’ll bet you’re counting the days.
Image: Free Digital Photos