Sunday, September 23, 2012

When is Singles Happy Hour?

Once aboard the Allure of the Seas last June, my little 86-year-old mother, The Meems, asked me to check the activities schedule to find out when they had "anything special" for singles.

"OK, Little Mother, I'll get right to it as soon as I _________________."
(Fill in the blank with ANYTHING - "Unpack my suitcase."  "Powder my nose."  "Swim a mile alongside the ship."  "Have open heart surgery."  Anything to buy enough time for her to forget that the question was on the table.)

She can't remember where she put her Clinique "Have a Nice Day" moisturizer.  Yesterday, I straightened her bathroom drawers and cabinets.  I unearthed 4 bottles of Clinique "Have a Nice Day" moisturizer.  Three were still in the box.  "Well.  I guess I forgot I had those."  But Singles Happy Hour?  Crystal clear in her memory.

After the 5th time she asked me about the activities for singles, I gave in and scanned the schedule.

"Looks like they have Single & Solo Travelers Get-Together every evening from 5:45-6:00PM at the Rising Tide Bar."

For all of you visual learners:
Go back to yesterday's post and imagine little Meems in her wheelchair riding high tide.

"Did I already miss it today?"

"Dang.  It's already 6:14!"  [give or take 10 minutes]

"Well."  [pause]  "Will you tell me when it's time tomorrow?"

Yikes.  How do I explain to Meems that there won't be many octogenarian males at the Rising Tide?  And, if there are any, they will be hittin' up on the hot 50-year-olds  Which prompted me to ask.

"Exactly how do you plan to get there?"  

I was hoping that her macular degeneration coupled with her non-motorized wheelchair would save the day.  Not so much.

"You could push me there."

"Mom, I don't think that Alan would like for me to go to a swinging singles bar."

"Well."  [pause]  "You could push me there, and then come back and get me."

What?!  I felt like my 11-year-old legally blind daughter was asking me to drop her off at the big bad mall.

"Hmm."  [thinking.  thinking.  thinking.  then, snap!]  "You know, Mom.  A lot of times those things are nothing but meat markets.  Singles looking for someone to sleep with.  It's a different world out there.  You never know what a man might be thinking."

"Ohhhhhh.  I didn't think about that!  Well."  [thinking.  thinking.  thinking.  then double snap.  Meems turns to her 18-year-old granddaughter.]  "Kelly, would you go with me?  It would be nice for you to meet some people your age."

[Kill.  Me.  Now.]

"Uhhhhh, Mom.  I think that Kelly just wants to hang out with us.  Besides, I don't think that her daddy would like for her to be at happy hour with a bunch of 50 year old men."

"Oh, yeah.  Well."  [thinking.  thinking.  thinking.  searching for a thought long lost in her frontal temporal lobe.  comin' up blank.]

"Mom, you sound really anxious ["hellbent" was my first choice] to meet some 'new friends.' Are you lonely?"

"I'm not lonely.  I'm with you and Kelly.  I just thought it might be nice...."  [voice trails away.  thinking.  thinking.  thinking.]  "I know of a lady who met her 3rd husband on a cruise.  They met at a singles activity.  Wasn't that nice!"

"Oh!  You think you might find someone to marry?!  Is that what this is all about?!"

"Noooo!"  [light, unconvincing chuckles]  "I don't want to get married again at my age!  I just thought it was neat that my friend met her 3rd husband on a cruise.  He had LOTS of money." 

[Time to call her bluff.  Smoke her out.  See what she was really made of.]  "I will roll you to the singles mingle, then, I'll just come back and get you!  You might just meet someone!  And, if you do and want to go to dinner with him, Kelly and I will totally understand!  But, you'll totally have to go back to HIS cabin.  IF, of course, he's strong enough to roll you by himself."  [the wheelchair, silly.  i was talking about the wheelchair.]

"Oh, nooooo.  Not if you think that there will be men who are just looking for someone to sleep with!"


"Oh, yeah.  I almost forgot about that.  You sure don't want to set a bad example for Miss Kelly!"

There.  That's settled.  Let's move on.  No.  With Meems - there is NO move on.  Know this.  There is NO move on.

Later that night at one of the shows, Mom bent the ear of the 60-something lady sitting next to her.  The lady kept slipping "help me" glances and insincere smiles my way.  I simply sweetly smiled back as if to say, "You asked for it, Lady.  When you asked Meems where she was from.  You.  Asked.  For.  It."

"The lady next to me went to that singles mingle last night.  She said that all the people there were waaaay younger than 'we' are.  I'm so glad I didn't go!"

Who knew that it would be a total stranger who would put me out of my misery?  

Here, Lady.  Have a breath mint.  And, for good measure, I'll make sure Meems has one as well.  You're welcome.

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