Sunday, June 12, 2011

Around the State in Eighty Days

Winston pulled into the hanger around 9:45 pm.
After the purr of the engine ceased and the luggage was all brought in, Mr. Hall slumped into his leather armchair and remained motionless for a solid five minutes. When he at last roused himself to speech, it was to order up a very dry martini and his bedroom slippers.
"We are finally done with the official visits- huzzah!" They clinked glasses. "Thirty-four different state meetings, several district ones and all of our own chapter meetings- all in the span of three months. Our weekends (barring any of our usual work, of course) are our own again!" Mrs. Hall had nothing but praise for the fortitude of her fellow traveler. "We've certainly covered the state, that's for sure."
"Did you see you made the front page of 'the word'* newspaper this month?" asked Mr. Hall. Mrs. Hall glanced at the sight of her weary self in navy blue chiffon and sequins and shuddered. "What an endurance contest. And I'm lucky I can still fit into those dresses. Eating on the road is not exactly the safest diet in the world. How about the footlong hotdogs at the Chuck Wagon? The smoked salmon from the Roscoe Diner? And do you remember those wonderful pies we had at the Blue Dolphin?"
Mr. Hall's eyes took on a faraway gaze and he could feel himself salivating unconsciously. "Mmmm.... banana creme..." he murmured. "Yes- banana creme pie and strawberry cheesecake. Both pieces as big as our heads"
"And us in formal wear, to boot." Mrs. Hall continued. "You know, we had to grab a bite where ever we could get it. And thank heavens for the GPS- if if wasn't for that we would never have been able to find the meeting halls, much less somewhere to eat. At least I got to march off some of those calories bringing in the flag. You had to sit through all those sessions; it's a wonder you didn't fall asleep during any of them." She unfolded her skirt from the garment bag and turned to hand him the television remote. Mr. Hall was nodding off dreamily, lost in a happy reverie of banana cream and crust.
"I'll hang up our clothes," she smiled, and covering him with a blanket, left him to his dreams.

*the word is a monthly publication put out by the Masonic Service Bureau of Central New York.

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