|Angie, Kat in middle, Alaine|
|Angie, Kat middle, Alaine|
I’m beginning this Fairhope Trip at the end of our 10-day trip–the night before we left to go home: me to my cove, A&A to Louisiana.
When Angie, Alaine, and I headed out for a “girl’s night out” in Fairhope, Alabama—which is a beautiful, clean, and friendly city. Where we went and where we ended up wasn’t exactly as we first thought, because we just went on with the wind, and sometimes the best or at least more interesting stories come from that.
There’s something to be said from sitting outside of a bar when you are not inebriated but have all your clear-headed faculties. My few drinks I consumed at an earlier establishment were long gone by time we ended up at a Fairhope Karaoke Bar, and how we arrived there was by chance meeting of two women around our age (actually, I may have been the oldest) who lived in Fairhope and were at the 2nd place we went to. But before I go into all that beginning of the night story in another post, I wanted to start near the end of the night while I had escaped the noise and smoke and sat outside the bar. The things you see and hear and have spoken to you are, well – I’ll just put them here:
Guy: “Hey, there’s the bloody man! Oh oh, he’s getting into that car.”
I see a shadowy figure getting into a car.
Other Guy: “Shouldna outta done that.”
Guy Three: “Umm mmm – shouldn’tda oughta.”
First Guy. “Oh well. Guess that’s that.” And they head back into the bar.
Me thinking: “That’s what? What’s going to happen to the bloody man and how’d he get bloody. ungh.”
Few minutes later:
Different guys walk out of bar. One is very upset.
Upset Guy: “OH! Oh! Oh! OH! where is he? where is he?” Turns a panicked face this way and that.
Other Guy: “Now now. Don’t get all upset.”
Upset guy runs up to me where I’m perched by the door. “You seen a bloody guy?”
Me: “Um, well, I saw a shadowy figure over there,” I point. “I think he got into someone’s car. Some guys said he did anyway and I couldn’t really tell too much.”
Upset guy: “He got into a car?”
Me shrugging, “Um, Yeah.”
Upset guy looks at other guy and shrugs. “Oh well. That’s that.”
Other guy. “Yup.” And they go back into the bar.
Me thinking, “What? what’s what? what’s up with the bloody guy and why are they calling him Bloody Guy even though at least one of them seems to know who he is? ungh.”
Bit later, guy strolls up to me from where he’s come from somewhere. “Hey you! Hey! I saw you and your friends on the dance floor! You all dancing like Bee-Awnce-Say! Whooo.” (Um, I will later tell about us girls, including this grammaw of Lil Boop, who did quite a bit of booty-shakin’ and other such shenanigans to “Brick House” – aw lawd.)
Me: “huhn. Well. You know. Fun and all that.”
Him: “Come on. Come dance with me.”
Him: “aw come on … come dance.”
Me: “Nuh huh. Don’t feel like it. I have a long drive back to NC tomorrow.”
“Hey! Say – -you a cowgirl?”
“A what? Cowgirl?”
“A cowgirl.” He points to my belt buckle, which looks like a bottle opener (see above).
I laugh, then, “Nope. not a cowgirl.”
“Gimme a hug!”
“Look – Do you know I’m a 54 year old Grandmother?”
Looks me up and down. “Huh – you wearin’ it weeee-eell. Huh. Just how old you think I am?”
Me: “Dunno.” Shrug.
Takes out his driver’s license and points to it.
Me: “I just told you I’m a grandmother- you think I can see that itty bitty writing. Huhn.” I look out over the parking lot, wondering about Bloody Man.
Him: “Come dance with me.”
“I told you no. Leave me be.”
“Gimme a hug then. Come on.” He reaches and hugs.
I pat his back motherly, as if I’m burping him. “There there now.”
He grins at me, goes inside, sticks his head back out the door and says, “I ain’t drinking you know. I don’t drink.” As if that explains everything.
Later a couple comes out and argues. She wants to stay. He wants to go home. He looks tired, fed up, as if he’d love to leave her there, as if this is a long-standing argument. He has gray threaded through his beard, she looks younger. Reaping what he sowed. Poor bastard. She wins. They go back inside.
Another guy comes out. “Wonder where the bloody guy went off to?”
“Bloody guy.” Shakes his head.
I shake my head, shrug as if to say, “whaddya gonna to do?”
The moon is almost full and it shines down through the trees. The music inside becomes louder, the smoke heavier as it pours out the door each time it’s opened. I long for my quiet cove. One of the women we met earlier comes out and is leaving. I say “I long for my quiet cove.” She says, “Someone in there said you are a novelist – a writer – writers need experiences, don’t they? Don’t they need to see and do different things so they can write about them?” I smile, say, “True.” But still. I long for the quiet. Or even to walk the pretty little downtown street of Fairhope. I take in some air and let it out slow. A young man walks out the door, smiles at me and says, “You okay?” I say, “Yeah. Just having a bit of quiet. Got a long ride tomorrow.” He nods, “Yeah. Need that quiet sometimes.” I smile, say, “Yup. For True. Nice City you have here.” He smiles again, nods at me, look out into the night, then goes back inside.
And I still wonder about Bloody Man.
The article I said I’d put here on “Writing a Life” by Darrelyn Saloom on Jane Friedman’s Writer’s Digest “There are no Rules” blog. R&T has a great mention and I’m called a “betty book look-a-like” *haw*