Victoria’s Settlement

Victoria’s Settlement    
     When I check my mail in the lobby there is a note from a woman with whom I spent nights at the skating rink in my fairy tale past. We tied the knot until she felt I was more like a boyfriend than a husband due to my leisurely manner in breadwinner matters and my maxing the plastic to mail order from a lingerie catalog which both affected our credit and made her feel like a burlesque dancer when I asked her to parade around in them. I knew she was here in Denver but had tried to hide from her to protect my newfound monasticism. But the slip of paper says, “You bastard, Love Tracy.”  
     That evening Tracy knocks on my door and my heart pounds like a prodigal son waiting to see if he is welcome at home again.
     “How did you dig me up out of the graveyard of our past?”
     “Your grandmother informed me of your presence here like you were in need of maternal care.”
     “Well, I’m ready, and could use a foot rub.”
     “You always were crazy. These are Natchez rules. We’ll take in a movie together but no hanky panky.”
     I say, “Do you ever get homesick for Natchez?”
     She smiles, “Yea, they have beautiful antebellum homes. But underneath the Southern hospitality is some major bigotry.”
     “Yes some of those Christians are too hardcore; Too much hate and not enough love; Jesus is about love. But there is history there. Here it feels like a cultural wasteland.”
     She says, “Denver isn’t about culture but rather the Rocky Mountains and the spirit of the west.”
     I reply, “Let’s go watch a western movie. Those cowboy flicks are a kind of history around this neck of the woods.”
     Tracy says, “Well I don’t own a car. But we could meet at the theater by bus.”
     I reply, “My head is a mass transit system.”
     “Are you good at finding detours around traffic jams? If so I’ll take the ride with you. But getting stuck in gridlock isn’t my kind of commute.”
     “Rush hour can’t hold a candle to my driving expertise. I’ll get you where you want to go.”
     “Listen, I want you to be on your toes, but not get us into a wreck.”
     “Come on now. You know you’re in the hands of a professional with me. I went to the elite school of driving. I can make recoveries from just about any near accident.”
     “Your biggest reckless maneuver was not telling me you’d come here.”
     “Well, I was just getting settled in. Of course, I’d have let you know.”
     “Said by a true evasive driver.”
     “Just trying to get a job first so I can give you a smooth ride instead of a fender bender.”
     “Waiting for you to get employment is like standing in line for the Black Friday sales and hoping your TV isn’t sold out.”
     “But hey it is worth it. My TV can pick up more channels than the leading competitors.”
     “You’ve got lots of channel surfing going on for sure. Now tell me, how did you arrive at this fair city?”
     I say, “I took the train just like in the old west. It was worth it to see those Iowa windmills twirling like washing machines on spin cycle as though to  
clean the air.”
     “Why didn’t get a new car to road trip with like that Corvette whose upholstery was so soft on my seat when Disco was king?”
     “You took the driver’s seat of the Corvette. My seat sits in your lingerie which was my consolation prize in our divorce settlement. Our assets were scarce. With the economy in Natchez in the dirt, there were no jobs to replenish my cash and acquire a new roadster.”
     “I always wondered to what purpose my lingerie would be put.”
     “It is my way of honoring what we had.”
     “The undies I bestowed upon thee are of the modest briefs variety. But with my love handles they don’t fit me anymore. So enjoy them as you will.”
     “Your form is as alluring as on our first date.”
     “I’ll remarry you. Tell me what other lovely sights I missed out on while being served chocolate ice cream in flight by pretty stewardesses.”
     “I took the elevator up to the top of the Sears Tower. My ears popped on the rise. The view from the Skydeck took in Lake Michigan and the city. There were women in saris hovering near the windows. Yet I had the most peculiar feeling that the tower was swaying in the wind. I didn’t stay there very long.”
     She replies, “Scaredy-cat! You were hypnotized by the exotic dress of those Indian women and that made you dizzy.”
     “Maybe it was the thinner air.”
     She replies, “Maybe you should have rested on each floor before you got to the top to adjust to the altitude. You railroad people are for the birds. I took the plane as most people do.”  
     I say, “Ours was a fly-by-night romance.”
     Tracy says, “Your nuttiness while charming is a bit much for my virgin sanity.”
     I reply, “Feel free to drop by anytime for outtakes from the reality movie.”
     She says, “Of course, but I want popcorn and soda. I am not a cheap date even while dropping off the consumerist bandwagon.”
     “Spending on you isn’t consumerism. It is the soul train on an LP track to R&B heaven.”
     “Take me for a spin on your turntable DJ.”
     I reply “You’re the only album on my playlist.”
    “The jukebox is playing our song. We can’t help but dance.”
    “Let me take you to the boutique to get re-accessorized with lingerie.”
     “First off, when we shack up again your stash of my intimate apparel gets recycled. They are the sad reminders of my once upon figure.”
     “There is a silk chemise in your future.”
     “Secondly, if I spy the matching bra and panties of my dream and there is any doubt about fitting me you must not stare when the salesgirl offers her hands-on evaluation which is part of her job not meant for your ogling.”
    “Sounds like an equable marriage.”
     She answers, “I never did trust those pop psychology books on marital equality. Courtship need not be so complicated. Often what a girl needs most is a door opened for her which, in spite of those feminist objections to gender role constructs, makes the home a happy village.”
     “Do you want to be the less equal animal?”
     “Well, I am the more primal on our conjugal ladder. As the feral cat of the family, no one vies for my spot on the couch. If the bra fits wear it.”
Written by goldenmyst
Published | Edited 23rd Jul 2021
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