Short Story: Florida Exposure ~ A “Senior Experience”

Coconut Irish Cream in Black Coffee

by LJ Frank

Restless and retired. My body felt every muscle twitch and minor soreness. My eyes glanced up at the ceiling fan blades. Motionless. I closed my eyes as I laid my head on the stiff pillow and fell into a deep slumber in my cozy, spartan place. The night seemed to pass by in a twinkling. Sleep. I tossed and turned. I saw a flash of light beyond my closed eyelids and heard some people shouting. Morning already? Yawning I got up thinking that in fact it was morning. I looked at the clock. I had slept only two hours! Fuck.

I stumbled around my closet and got dressed. I had a small but steady Social Security check and a distaste for a nursing home unless we’re talking about a woman’s mammary glands. I once belonged to a local lactation society. The breast scene in Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath haunted me. Otherwise, I wanted a better offer. I wanted to live on the surface while dipping into the marrow at my leisure. 

Depth and substance are when you were getting to the bottom of things. I had my own meaningful relationship with the gods and getting to the so-called bottom of things. And I wasn’t necessarily into bottoms at least not now. I was more interested in the opposite side. I was going to die shortly anyways or so my doctor told me last year. I was reverting to the mindset of an inmate at a faclesse residential facility. And the hour hand on the clock meant less to me each day. A minute is a minute. Escape. Run as far and as fast as you can or sit in a lotus position and meditate on your belly button. Breathe. Inhale, exhale.

I would argue with my other collegial seniors who would question the meaning of being smart. It turns out being smart to them was when you agreed with them regardless of topic.  Smart meant self-affirmation. Theirs. Fuck it.

My dilemma is I’m an intellectual libertine. I also pursue sensual pleasure. My intellect is essential to a thoughtful orgasm. My thinking didn’t have to make sense to anyone but me. 

I live in a tiny apartment with the landlord living several states away with his wife, kids and a dominant lover on the side that instructs him how to better serve his wife. She operates a male maid service for the married rich in the Hamptons outside New York City. He vacations in Palm Beach. I live on the Gulf side. I’m not rich by any stretch of one’s imagination. I don’t play golf and prefer liberating attitudes. I walk the beach and collect seashells for amusement, talk to myself and occasionally share a drink or two with the boat people who have a culture of their own.

I got up and decided to make some coffee when I realized the empty bag of free trade organic coffee was in the cylindrical metal garbage container. Damn.

I got in my compact car and headed for a little coffeeshop hoping it’d still be open. No. No drive throughs either were open along the coastal strip. It was then I realized another car pulled up next to me. The driver roller down the window as I did mine.

“Hey neighbor.”

“Hi neighbor. Good evening or should I say early morning.”

Coffee?”

“Yeah.”

“I know where to get some. Follow me.” 

Twenty minutes later we pulled into a marina. The Gulf of Mexico waters shimmered under a full moon.

I joined her as we climbed aboard a handsome looking ketch. “Your sailboat?” I asked.

“You could say that.”

She made some decaf coffee and added a couple table spoons of Irish Cream. We chatted for a spell. I found myself finally getting some needed shut eye and we fell asleep in each other’s arms. During the middle of the night, I felt her hand between my thighs, her lips on mine and her tongue in my mouth. I never opened my eyes. I just felt things, some of them new.  

I heard a seagull and took a deep breath. The fragrance of a fresh sea breeze infused the air. 

I slowly got up from the cabin’s bed and wandered into the galley. My long-legged neighbor stood pouring some fresh coffee into two mugs. I looked at her and wondered who she really was…long hair spilled down over her shoulders and deep twisted front tank top and down to her blue jean cut offs. She wore a sterling silver necklace with a small key attached.  She grinned. “I know where to get some really fresh beans for a coffee connoisseur such as yourself.”

“Oh?”

“We’re on our way?”

My eyebrows rose. I must have looked a bit surprised.

“There’s a small exotic port on the east coast…of Central America!” She stated.

I nodded. “I’m adaptable.”

“I know,” She smiled, holding up the key attached to her necklace.