A New Year

The weather here for New Year’s Eve in SoFLA was close to perfect, with clear skies and a waxing crescent moon. Sue Ten decided it was a good time to show another movie on the side of The Swing Barn and advertised Casino Royale accordingly.

A lot of us were happy to see that since we wanted to be prepared for the new James Bond flick Quantum of Solace which picks up exactly where the previous Daniel-Craig-as-James-Bond movie left off, but Sue surprised us by showing the Peter Sellers / Woody Allen version of Casino Royale, and that one ends in a wild night of cowboys on horseback, Indians with flaming arrows, Navy seals in scuba gear, and US Marines, not unlike many regular nights at The Swing Barn.

The festivities at the Slice of Heaven 24-Hour Pie Shop and Driving Range were a little more restrained, and aimed at the non-drinking crowd. Prentiss, my pie-shop apprentice, did come up with a fabulous new corn-dog pie with an onion-ring crust, and she also served one of the possibilities in our search for “The Best Key Lime Pie Ever”. Sadly, she garnished it with a slice of lime that was definitely not of the key-lime variety, but more on that later.

Out on the driving range, we offered free balls from nine to midnight, and that always brings in a crowd. One new player was a guy with long gray hair and a handlebar moustache, who told me, “I was a caddy 50 years ago, and just now I am starting to play myself.”I told him that it’s a game for optimists, since you can always believe that the next hit will be better. He said, “I was an optimist when I got here tonight, but I think I am a pessimist now.”  I hope he cames back. His accent smacked of New England, and I’m always a sucker for that.

As the evening progressed, I noticed several people from my physical therapist’s office, but I think they were just trolling for business. Also, there were any number of fem-bots in short black dresses and high-high heels, trolling for business of another sort entirely. Granted, there aren’t too many night spots out on the edge of the ‘Glades where we live, and with the economy slumping as it is, we aren’t in a position to turn anyone away.

Your second-cousin Darnell, by the way, did a great job of keeping the kids busy by having them create an “art car” which they covered with spray paint.  I’m fairly sure my ex-husband Pretty Boy Boyd will like the new look of his formerly orange Toyota Celica. He’ll let us know when he gets back from New Orleans, if that is, in fact, where he really is. I hope so. He used to tell me that he had been a river boat gambler in a former life, and died in Louisiana. Perhaps history will repeat itself, not that I wish him ill. Of course not.

Nurse Crotchett brought along a truck load of fireworks, which she set about firing from the driving range, setting them off wherever she found an open slot.  I tell you, it made for a great visual impact: golf balls flying into the air, fireworks lighting up the sky, the movie on the side of the Swing Barn, and the waxing crescent moon overhead.

I worried a little about some of the folks stumbling out of The Swing Barn into harm’s way, but your second-cousin Darnell had the good sense to tether his goat Jonathan on a long line near the edge of the driving range, and for once, Jonathan earned his keep, and we resisted the urge to turn him into goat pie for yet another day.

I headed down to my turquoise conch cottage around 3:00 a.m., which was a nice change from my usual insomniac stroll TO the pie shop at about that time, and fell into a few hours of troubling dreams.

One of the dreams, that I can still see pretty clearly, involved a wild car ride down a mountain road with Nurse Crotchett at my side and distressingly ineffective brakes.  I probably don’t need much help analyzing that one. I also dreamt that I had found an Asian baby, and gotten quite attached to it. The child grew to toddler size and was able to speak quite eloquently in no time, which is when she said, “I think I’m ready to go home now.”

The final dream was that my orange hair color had gone strangely spotty, and was showing peculiar patches of mousy brown and gray. I can’t understand that one at all. Tonight, the girls & I are dressing up to go to the ballet, leaving Darnell; Joe Sparkle, Junior; and The Morning Guy in charge. I’m sure they will do just fine, don’t you agree?