Thursday, November 26, 2015

24c: Happy Thanksgiving!

"I'm famished," Christian declares decaratively.
     Me, too. Although you wouldn't think so, after my having just ingested a mouthful of dirt. Somehow, I had always thought dirt and grass and grubs would be more filling, but it's not. Like Chinese food, after a half hour I'm hungry again.
     "Would you like something international or something a bit more continental?" he says, giving me a choice.
     I look around. This close to the airport, I see nothing but hotels and an IHOP.
     An IHOP?
     "I'm in the mood for something continental," I tell him, remembering how, when he told me he was taking me to a world-famous restaurant, we ended up at McDonald's.
     He didn't lie, I guess.
     Immediately, he pulls off the road and into the driveway of one of those hotels.
     Did I mention we were in his car? Well, we are. For the sake of the story, just go with it.
     He finds a parking space close to the entrance, hangs his "handicap" placard on his rear-view mirror, and we exit the car and enter the hotel.
     We walk briskly through the lobby, holding hands. He's a step or two ahead of me and is anxiously pulling me along. My, but my naughty boyfriend seems to be in a hurry. A certain part of my body tingles at the thought of what he's in the mood to eat.
     "Just pretend we're staying here," he tells me.
     I'm not sure I understand what he means, until he leads me into a dining area, of sorts.
     "You're bringing me to the hotel's free continental breakfast?" I ask in surprise.
     "Hey," he says, "I didn't get rich by being wasteful. Besides, you're the one who said she was in the mood for something continental."
     I couldn't argue with his logic. It was irrefutable.
     His eyes were sparkling, like his skin in direct sunlight. I've never seen him this happy, this giddy, and it's a joy to behold, as opposed to beehive. My eyes are probably sparkling, too, as I see food from one end of the room to the other.
     "And it's all free," Christian agrees.
     In the middle of it all is a giant cornucopia laying on its side with fruits and vegetables and grains pouring out of it. I pick up a corn-on-the-cob and begin to eat.
     "That's plastic," Christian tells me, and he's right.
     Delicious plastic.
     "Here," he says, again taking my hand, "let me show you around. Oh, look, Ana. Eggs!"
     I've never seen anyone get so excited about eggs, unless you want to count Harry Fierstein. Christian continues.
     "What makes them continental is that they're hard-boiled. Any hack can scramble two eggs together, but to hard-boil them properly, it takes an artist. And look at how many different kinds of cereal they have. Wow! Frosted Flakes! Look, Ana, they even have high-fiber cereal, if you're into that kind of thing."
     I don't know what kind of thing he means, but I'm sure I'm not.
     "And if you're so inclined, you can make your own waffles over there, by the bagels and cream cheese. Excuse me, my dear, while I indulge help myself to some of this yogurt."
     As he starts to slurp, I look around. The dining area has a nice Pilgrim-like theme to it. A turkey here, some corn-stalks there, and pumpkins scattered all around. There's even a girl dressed as a Native American helping people at the waffle station. She looks Latina or Hispanic. It might sound racist, but I can't tell them apart.
     "She's an Indian," Christian says in his typical un-p.c.-like way.
     "No, she's not," I tell him.
     "Yes, she is."
     "No, she's not," I insist.
     "Yes, she is."
     "Indians are from India," I say, correcting him.
     "Be that as it may, she's still an Indian."
     Christian is such a control freak that I'm determined to prove him wrong. I go up to the girl.
     "Excuse me," I say, by way of introduction, "do you speak English?"
     "Si," she says.
     "And do you work here??
     "In the kitchen?"
     "Can I ask you a silly question?"
     "Are you supposed to be an Indian?"
     "Really? What kind?"
     "See?" Christian tells me, and he leads me to a table where he's already served the two of us.
     My, how thoughtful he can be when he wants to be. Thoughtful, that is.
     "You are so unpredictable, Mr. Grey," I tell him.
     "That's only because I am, Miss Steele" he tells me back.
     "This has been a wonderful day," I tell him.
     "I know it has," he tells me back.
     "Thank you," I tell him,
     He looks at me intently.
     "No, Ana," he tells me back, taking my hand in his, "thank you."
American Chimpanzee

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