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Day in and day out, for the better part of a year, I’m on a 50 foot cabin cruiser with the Captain. I love him dearly, always. I even like him, most of the time.

Known for hugging strangers (I try for at least one a day, or a few in the same day to make up for the lean periods), I befriend strangers in marinas,  fleeting “boats” that pass on the Intracoastal, “boat” friendships. One of those ladies phrased it well,

“Sometimes I need my own kind.”

Exactly.  I get to the point where I want to spend time with a woman.

Explanation required? He goes with me to the Farmers’ Market and is already at the other end while I’m still greeting the dog and his owner at the entrance.

I want to meander and look at “stuff” and talk to the artisans and browse and enjoy. He’s bought the tomatoes and sticky buns and focaccia bread, paid and is ready to return to the boat.

So I follow. There’s really nothing I want to buy and if I start talking to myself I may raise a few eyebrows.

And it was in this frame of mind that I went off, alone. Maybe I’d buy something, maybe not. I’d been looking for thin anklets in leather forever.

Calypso Cottage in Beaufort NC caught my eye. It touts itself as a Luxury Resort Lifestyle Shop and that it is. Plus anklets were on sale at $3.00 apiece. There were four left and I grabbed them all.

The shop has lots of little rooms leading off each other, crammed with all manner of merchandise. And about six ladies in their late thirties/early forties were in there and in serious “retail shopping” mode. I’d have to wait my turn to pay.

Not a problem. Their chit-chat was grey noise that didn’t register until one said –

“I complimented her on her earrings as that was the only nice thing I could say about her.”

My writer’s brain cartwheeled in delight and I told her I’d be using that phrase. Ice broken, I felt free to ask questions, after apologizing for being nosey!  Were they together, where were they from, what were they doing in Beaufort NC?

Well, they were a group of friends from New York visiting another friend. And the purpose of the visit?


How cool is that! Not a class reunion, just a group of women who decided to go off and have a fun. But, she added, a weekend was enough. They were catching a 7.00 am flight home the next morning.

I walked back slowly to the boat, thinking. And yes, it’s cool to have time away with your girlfriends. But it’s really cool to get back to “same old, same old.”

Morning chit-chat over a cup of coffee on the aft deck;  a quick hug in passing; kisses freely given; the hand that reaches out and takes mine while walking; a close cuddle at night; a shared moment of something funny that only requires eye contact (perfected over years) and let’s not forget wet noses and sloppy doggy kisses.

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