Saturday, October 30, 2010

Overstuffed Suitcases and Dominoes

The good thing about being a poor suitcase packer is that you have plenty of experience to draw from when the airline checking attendant informs you that your suitcase weighs too much..."Three pounds? That's it?" Once, when ending an 8-week stay in PA, I was 12-lbs over and was forced to carry around multiple pairs of shoes in a laundry bag in the Philly airport before I boarded. Not my finest hour I'll admit, but I didn't have to pay the required $50 for overweight baggage. So three pounds is nothing. I knew exactly what to go for: shoes and books.

Yesterday afternoon I met up with my good friend Barbara, who befriended my parents through the Officers Christian Fellowship when we were living in Connecticut in the early 80's. Real early 80's. Like, before I was born 80's. Barbara is an independent, well-traveled, 70-something-yr-old mother and grandmother, who has never met a stranger. We took an hour+ long hike through the woods where I saw the Pennsylvania forests in their last minutes of changing. The trees were looking forward to being dormant for awhile. They told me.

We had dinner at her condo: Barbara, myself, and Andre, her downstairs neighbor. Barbara and Andre are quite a pair. When Barbara first told me she had invited her downstairs neighbor for dinner I imagined an older man, probably in his 50s or 60s, who was quiet, a bit of a homebody, and a diligent worker who was looking forward to retiring in Florida. Couldn't have been more wrong.
Andre is a 36-yr-old single, college-educated, African-American, former male model who appears to be anything but a homebody. Barbara treated him like a long-lost-son, listening diligently to him share his frustrations regarding his parents and dating, and offering sage advice when appropriate. In return, Andre teased her about: being a "cougar", her hearing, and him being able to hear her get up to use the bathroom in the middle of the night. The three of us played Mexican Train dominoes until about 1am. It was a strange juxtaposition of backgrounds, finding fellowship over a game of dominoes. I loved it.

I'm now awaiting my flight back to Austin, with a layover in Tampa, carrying my bag full of books, and of course, a pair of shoes.


Steve and Pam said...

ONLY 3#'s??? THAT IS amazing! So happy you and Barb got to visit! 30 days!!! Love Mom

p27tfs said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
sowlee said...

Sounds like a good vaycay to me. Did you find your electronics? Because.... how did you blog from the airport without them?

Emily said...

I'm a girl of the 2010s, I travel with multiple electronics...probably a poor idea. :) I blogged on my computer at the airport. Definitely a good vacay.
And yes MOm, 3#s is amazing!