I knew a few people when I moved there and they introduced me to Gene. Gene was a furniture restorer. He actually lived above his shop. He was a nice guy and I learned a lot about furniture, wood, restoration and historical perspective. He dumped me. I think he actually ended up with a woman named Susan and now lives on a remote peninsula northwest of here.
I remember another guy I dated one Summer who had a sailboat and a massive ego. He had fun friends and, frankly, was pretty amazing in bed. But otherwise kind of boring.
Then there was the single father who had no teeth (he wore dentures). This guy was all kind of weird and must have been more interesting than my memory of him. He had a boy who was about 10-ish. The big lesson I learned from him was shopping economically. I was taught to be guided by price per pound - especially on stuff like meat. He, on the other hand, made his buying decisions on price per meal. We did a lot of 'see I'm right' shopping and, in the end, I realized that there are many situations where my way was the clear wrong way. Shocking.
But the one guy who is the reason for this entry is one I had not even remembered. My brother reminded me of him yesterday. He was a great guy. Really good looking. I mean really. He was black in a white town in the South and wore it like it was nothing. And he was one heck of a sharp dresser. His thing was creases in jeans. They had to be Watch Out You Will Cut Me sharp and jeans without creases were like dirty underwear to him.
I didn't buy it. I didn't care about creases. So before we went anywhere, he would iron creases into my jeans.
This parade of men was welcomed and celebrated by my rich circle of non boyfriend friends. Cindy and Keith both worked at a nearby prison and were sweet and fun and adventurous both socially and otherwise. They were comfortable. I still hear from Cindy once in awhile.
Janet was an artist. A serious artist who wanted to make art for a living and, the internet tells me, she did. She gave me two paintings. One is a small watercolor sketch that hangs in my bathroom, The other is a large wonderful watercolor abstract of the sea kind of. She and I matted and framed it and just this past January, my brother, at my request, moved it to a better spot where I can see it easily. She also gave me a contract for this painting. The contract, signed by both of us, outlines my responsibilities as an owner and hers as a creator. She was always thinking big.
Susan was my first friend who lived in a mobile home. Since I first saw one on TV when I was a kid, I was enamoured with mobile homes. Susan gave me my first cat - named Christmas. Susan was from Key West, FL and towards the end of my Southern Pines stay, she moved back home. I agreed to help her drive here stuff down there.
It was August in the South. In a U Haul truck with no air conditioning, towing a VW bug whose windows were down with tennis rackets tied on like window screens because it carried a cat and her kittens. We were quite the wagon train. We were nearly to the bottom of the mainland when we got the news that Elvis had died (August 16, 1977).
I stayed in Key West for a week and loved it. Such great food. Such great architecture. Such great people. So many bugs!!!
Before my Key West trip, an old friend in Charlotte, NC had introduced me to a new guy. An older guy who worked at the newspaper there. He would soon be my husband and my life as a seamstress/needleworker in Southern Pines would draw to an end.
To Be Continued