It's the end of the year. Today I'm meeting a blind date. I walk fast, though careful not to get my high heel boots caught in a pothole. No way do I want to fall. Not like my poor friend Dusty who fell, broke a hip, and bingo, she's dead.
Starbucks is bustling. It's a warm day for December -- hate the sunshine -- all the greasy sunscreens, and everyone worrying about melanomas. What happened to the beautiful cold weather and fog?
At Starbucks, I order my decaf cap, dry inside, two shots, two inches of nonfat foam on top. Then I find my seat by the window. I love to look out the window at the slanted narrow streets and hills, Victorian houses, old flats hanging from the edge of old grocery stores.
Just then on the dot four o'clock, the door opens. A man much older than Aunt Zoe's claims -- she told me he's in his late sixties! -- shuffles toward me. Aunt Zoe said he's still working as a doctor. He wears green scrubs, a stethoscope dangling from his thin neck and a heavy-duty spray tan. He stands in line and then carrying his cup, he approaches my table.
"Jeremy Blum. I like a woman on time."
His eyes behind huge out-of-style aviator glasses are dots.
"What kind of surgeon?" I ask after a long silence.
"Uh huh. How... interesting.''
He holds the cup of herbal tea close to his very thin mouth, his tiny tan eyes evaluating my face.
"Zoe said you were early sixties," he says peevishly.
"She lied about both of us then."
"Mildred, my wife, at 65 looked 30.''
He reaches into his pocket and opens a worn leather wallet. He shows me a photograph of a woman with pale blonde hair and one of those faces so done -- nose job, puffed up lips, all of it.
"She's lovely. How did she die?"
"Eating a tainted pea. She died from botulism."
He shrugs his narrow shoulders.
"Since Mildred died, every woman over 60 sends me tickets to musicals, leaves casseroles on my doorstep. They're boring, and old.''
"So why did you agree to meet me?"
He shrugs. "I googled you. You write books and columns. I've got a whooper of a story.''
"Oh -- I'm sorry. I have enough with my own career."
"Isn't it too late for a career?" he asks unpleasantly.
"No such thing as too late. Everything is possible at every age. Anyway, sorry, I can't help you.''
He sticks his face so close to mine I can see the tiny cluster of hairs sticking from his nose.
"You'd be a doll with botox -- Juvéderm on those chin lines -- some fat from your thigh on your cheekbones. You're sinking in. Also I can see you as a blonde.''
"I'm not interested.''
"Are you dominatrix?" he asks.
"This isn't Latin, honey. Top or bottom?"
"Hey, I have a deadline. I have to go.''
"What are you writing about?"
As I walk home, I admire the early twilight dropping shadows along the city, like gold foil.
Oh well, it's another year. Last year was a year of hopes, dreams, triumphs, hours on the phone with Comcast, India with my computer hotline before being disconnected, but I survived cancer, Hollywood's slowness, FedEx, UPS, losing keys, three telephones and six pairs of glasses. But everything is possible at any age.
I live my funny life.