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Granny's Big Adventure

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I peek into the room next to mine and the sight that peaks back is not necessarily a pretty one. Granny has a date tonight. I guess its okay for a widow to have a date seven years after her husband’s passing but when the widow is eighty-three, it is a completely different story.


I don’t wonder how she got the date…she hasn’t stopped repeating it since she arrived home from the grocery store.


Stephen, an attractive, Greek cashier that works at the local Food Lion, had seen Granny drop her wallet and picked it up for her like “a perfect gentlemen,” in Granny’s words. From Granny’s perspective, he had been eyeing her the entire time she browsed through the store. But since Granny’s eyesight had been diminishing the past few years, anything was possible. In reality, Stephen had been eyeing the money Granny had dropped. Stephen told she was gorgeous and didn’t look a day over forty (which makes me wonder if his own eyesight is diminishing), and since Granny was, in fact, eighty-three, she took this as a compliment.


So replaying the scene in my mind, I watch as Granny gets ready for the first date she’s had in sixty-three years. Granny has on a less than flattering, pleated, tennis skirt and a low-cut, magenta blouse. Her hair, or what’s left of it, is curled into a million tiny springs. Her eyeliner is too thick and her lipstick is too dark. She’s in the process of putting on fake eyelashes. If you’d have seen her in town and didn’t know her, she’d look like a tired street-walker. The humorous part of all of this is not the overabundance of makeup or the lack of clothing…it is the white, orthopedic shoes she wears on her feet. Granny thinks she looks wonderful. I slip away from the doorway and back into my bedroom before she asks me how she looks.


I have a date tonight too, believe it or not. His name is William. We’ve been attending the same school since kindergarten and people think he’s a little different. He asked me out a few weeks ago and I decided to give him a chance. His completely polo wardrobe, complete with sweater vests and matching hats, make him one of the most preppy guys at our small town school. I appear much more conservative than Granny. I am wearing my favorite jeans and a new purple top from the mall. My date should be here soon…and so should Granny’s.


We both are ready for our nights on the town. William arrives first in a little red Volkswagen bug. I think to myself how very odd this seems butWe leave at the same time and Granny heads off with her new beau, Stephen in the opposite direction. I silently praise God. Granny is headed off to a cheap Mexican restaurant in the middle of town. It’s the one with the kiddie rides outside of it and gumball machines with plastic jewelry in them. William and I are off for miniature golf.


Halfway through our game, I hear screeching brakes in the parking lot and a lot of whooping and hollering. It sounds like someone I know but I turn away. I don’t turn back until a heavy hand flops onto my shoulder and says something slurred that I don’t understand. It sounds like “Ayyyyy, hawny.” Possibly “Hey Honey”? It is either the deep southern draw, the alchohol, or possibly both that is making me unsure of what they say still, I recognize the voice immediately. It is my highly drunk grandmother. She is still holding a fruity cocktail glass that I’m sure the restaurant will be missing later.


“Heyyy, sweetie,” Granny’s slurring makes me blush a deep hue of red. “Can me and Stephano join you two youngins’?” Granny’s pet name for Stephen instantly intensifies the blush on my face two shades darker than it already was. Stephen is staring at me. There is a slightly sinister grin on his tan face. It would be much more frightening if he hadn’t been so pleasing to the eye. I turn towards my date, who is not looking at me nor my exceedingly intoxicated grandmother. He, embarrassingly enough, is staring at Stephen. My blush turns blood red and it seems that there isn’t another shade of red I can turn without becoming purple. “Ehhllooooooo??” Granny inquires again about the doubled-up date. I open my mouth to speak but nothing comes out. William answers for me, “Sure! I would just love to get to know you guys more!” He eyeballs Stephen and I feel like I could die of embarrassment.


There is an awkward pause and then Drunken Granny and Creepy Stephen go to pick out clubs. William decides to tag along. I am left standing alone in the middle of the putting green with a club that I feel like using on someone. Could this night get any better?


I decide to go to the bathroom and splash my face with some water and see if it washes away any of my problems. When I get there, Stephen is hanging around and talking on the phone. I rush into the Ladie’s Room but not before he can flash me another disturbing smile. I splash my face and through the paper-thin walls I can hear Stephen talking to someone. He sounds affectionate. I peek around the door frame and Stephen is turned around. He is calling someone honey, pookie face, and love muffin. He has another girlfriend!!!! Then I hear, “Don’t worry, I’ll get us some money. This ole hag is loaded.” So he’s a con artist who is dating my grandmother, has a secret girlfriend, and is hitting on me. I ponder this for a moment and have a hard time keeping my laughter in. This is, undoubtedly, the strangest day of my life.


The date ends late and my embarrassment is over for the time being. I am already dying of humiliation because my date, William has a crush on my grandmother’s con artist boyfriend and my grandmother parades around town drunk. Could this night get any worse? Just then, my Granny bounds into the room to tell me that she has another date with Stephen in three days.


The three days pass very slowly for me as Granny tries to tell all about her wonderful date as if I had never been there. She tells me the story at least twelve times with a new embellishment each time it is told. When the date day arrives, Granny tells me where they are going to eat. It is a highly expensive, French restaurant that neither Granny or me can pronounce. It’s one of those places with the heavy, mahogany furniture where the waiters whip the napkin onto the ladies lap and all the men wear suits. I try and picture Granny here but I can’t see her dressed as she was the other night in such a sophisticated and high-end place. I involuntarily shake my head at this silliness.



Stephen and Granny arrive at the restaurant just after eight o’ clock and immediately begin ordering the most delicious and expensive food. Forty dollar lobster, ninety dollar wines are just some of the fantastic courses that grace the table this evening. When the meal is done, both parties are bursting with costly dishes and Granny is slightly tipsy. The check comes and the bill comes to one-hundred and ninety-three dollars and thirty-two cents. Stephen half-heartedly digs around in his pockets for his wallet. He has, ironically, forgotten it. Granny gets her’s out to pay and gives the waiter an American Express credit card. The waiter chuckles a bit and politely tells Granny that she has handed him a Senior Citizens Discount Card from Goodwill. She laughs and quickly hands him the real American Express. Stephen and Granny make awkward small talk until the waiter returns with a vague expression on his face. “I’m sorry ma’am but your card has been declined.” “Well try it again!” Granny has an uncomfortable way of getting belligerent quickly. “I did ma’am, several times.” This same routine happens six more times with six different cards. Then Granny decides to use cash. Two crisp one-hundred dollar bills are handed to the waiter. Moments later, the waiter returns with a considerably altered disposition. He is no longer the cheerful, cordial host he should be. Four very large, very intimidating police officer’s are standing behind him. “Ma’am…sir,” the head police officer gestures towards Stephen and Granny, “You are both under arrest for the manufacturing and spending of counterfeit money. You have the right to remain…” As the officers continue advising them of their Miranda rights, Granny and Stephen struggle to be freed but it is no use. They know what’s coming. Neither Granny nor Stephen will going on any dates any time soon. Twenty years to be exact.





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