Monday, May 14, 2012

Who doesn't want to play, Hide-and-seek?

Hide-and-seek.  Remember that game?  I've always been terrible at it - even as an adult - because I get too excited.  I'm one of those geeky people who when someone gets close to my hiding spot, I start squirming and giggling to the point of giving myself away.  I've actually been known to get so incredibly nervous that I, umm, oh...personal confession time - wet myself a little.  How embarrassing, right? 
So what does this have to do with this morning's blog?  I'm getting there.

Over the weekend, a friend and former lover celebrated his birthday.  When this happens, I tend to remember fondly some of our goofier moments.  Happy Birthday, Tinsley.  This one's for you...

Before Eric and I married, I made it a habit to find, date, and latch on to men who were the extreme polar opposite of myself.  One of these guys happened to be a Marine.

Most people know me today as "their liberal friend from California".  Back then, at 19 years of age, I was the most conservative, stuck up, pain-in-the-ass who no man in his right mind would ever want to date.  The very idea of going out on a blind date with a Marine appalled me (Military folk, please take no offense.  I was young and naive).  Since I was doing someone a favor, my thought was I'd go with a mutual friend, take this fellow to lunch at a mall, and that would suffice.  If he smoke, drank, or spoke stupid I was going to leave his sorry ass at the restaurant.

When I arrived at the meeting spot, this was my first impression; a tall, goofy guy with a cigarette dangling out of his mouth, wearing a Jack Daniel's t-shirt, yelling in a thick, southern drawl, "Hey, y'all must be Bri.  I'm Tony!  How the Hell are ya?!"

"Holy Shit!"

Needless to say, our first encounter was a disaster.  I didn't leave his ass at the restaurant only because my friend had the good grace to talk me out of it.  After dropping him off, I literally forgot his name and tried to put the entire experience behind me.  Apparently, Tony didn't.  Soon afterwards, he started calling my house from Camp Pendleton almost on a daily basis.  I didn't remember who he was.  He begged me for a ride in from the local airport.  Anything to stop the calls; however, something strange happened.  We hung out.  He was sweet.  He was sincere.  He asked for a kiss.  That was the beginning of a romance and now a friendship which has continued to this day.

Long opening to get to the Hide-and-seek story...here it is.

Whenever Tony came up from base, he stayed at our mutual friend's house.  Our friend still lived with her Mother and Grandmother who were Portuguese.  Her mother was wonderful and treated Tony and myself like her own children.  In fact, I practically grew up with her daughter so her mother had known me for years.  My friend's grandmother (Granny), was extremely old - close to 100 years of age.  She could barely see (wore very thick lenses), couldn't hear, and moved extremely slow with a walker.

One particular evening, Tony, myself, and Granny were alone in the house.  Tony and I were watching TV in the den.  I don't believe we were misbehaving; yet, knowing Tony and myself we most likely were.  Granny was very old fashioned.  She didn't like girls unsupervised with boys in the house and she let me know this very clearly.  She waved her walker at me and told me in broken English, "GO HOME!  BAD GIRL!"

I was ready to do so but Tony just laughed and said it was ok. Granny was heading to bed.  I should wait it out in our friend's room until this sweet lady settled down for the night.  Fine.  I stood waiting in the dark waiting to hear Granny's door close.  It didn't happen.  Instead, I heard the shuffling of her walker slowly coming down the hallway.

"Tony!  What's Granny doing?"

"Maybe she's going to use the restroom?"

I waited in Marie's room a little longer.  The shuffling steps down the hall got louder.  "Tony, is she going into the bathroom?"

"Uh, Maaayybe not.  I think she knows you're in Marie's room."

"What?!"

"Just hide in the closet!"

Marie's bedroom door swung slowly open.  There was no sound for a moment.  I knew Granny was standing in the doorway trying to figure out where I was.  Now I started getting nervous.  The old woman moved towards the closet. "Oh my God, Oh my God!"  The door slid opened...I screamed and pee'd simultaneously.

"YOU BAD GIRL!!  BAD GIRL!!  GO HOME!"  She whacked me with her walker.

"TONY, YOU BASTARD!"

For a deaf, nearly blind and crippled centurion, she scared the Hell out of me!  And what was Tony doing?  Laughing downstairs in the den.