Photo taken near Monument Valley, Utah

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

In the Company of Friends on a Cold Day

At Llano Grande RV Resort, Mercedes, Texas…

As advertised by the weather forecasters, today was windy, cool and rainy here in the RGV.  A cold front blew through during the night, and the outside temperature plunged to 47 degrees, which is unusually cold for this area.  

A quick check of other cities, like at our home near Fort Worth (34 degrees) and Chicago (7 degrees) reminds us why this area is so attractive to folks from up north.  (There is a large contingent of Canadians here in the park.)  It is usually quite rare that wearing shorts would not be desirable here year around. Fortunately, cool spells like this are short lived; within a day or two, we will have 80-degree days again.

Since any plans that may be made by us retired folks are usually said to be in 'Jello,' a day like this that keeps us inside is no big deal.  We just get caught up on household chores or another activity like writing this post.  Almost everything that may have been scheduled outdoors can either be moved indoors at the many venues available here or merely postponed, for there is always, always tomorrow.

Ed called this morning and invited us to join them for breakfast or
lunch at Beto's, one of our favorite local restaurants.  We decided to take a break from doing nothing and chose the lunch option, as it is usually late morning when we start thinking seriously about food.  Ron and Verna joined us at Beto's, and we had great fellowship laughing our way through the excellent and plentiful home-cooked fare.  You would think we would eventually run out of funny material, but none of us takes life very seriously, and we all have enough foibles and eccentricities to provide ample fodder for hilarious anecdotes and putdowns.  All of the folks we have met here can take in stride the good natured harassment and dish it out just as deftly, so no one has to tiptoe around anyone's delicate feelings.

After lunch, Sandy made some phone calls, and I had time to add to this post, reflecting on yesterday's activities, which included a mini get-together at one of the park's activity rooms.  Several of the regulars showed up to swap stories and eat some snacks, and we even had an impromptu recitation performed by an elderly gentlemen who happened upon our little gathering.  He had entered our room, uninvited but not discouraged (we are nothing if not polite), and sat silently against the wall for some time listening to our spirited banter before arising and walking over to where we were seated in a semicircle.  Then he began a lively recitation of "The Cremation of Sam McGee," a lengthy classic poem by Robert W. Service, published in 1907.  It was a remarkable feat of memorization, and his expressive performance caused us to speculate that he may have had some experience as a thespian.  Upon completing the recitation, he departed quickly, and we marveled at this bit of serendipitous entertainment by a complete stranger.  Adding to the eccentricity of his performance, the old man appeared to be wearing a woman's blouse, but that simply heightened the intrigue.  We all agreed this was something we didn't see every day and voiced our hope that his man-blouse was not a harbinger of future men's fashion.  This was one of those times that I wish I had had enough presence of mind to take a photo.  No one in our group did, probably because of our utter surprise at the actions of our anonymous visitor.  

Now, back to today:  After lunch at Beto's, Ed suggested that we go down to the rec hall and play games.  We were joined by Heinz and Irene, as well as Ron and Verna.  

At the Farkle Table:  Heinz, Irene, Marilyn, Ed, Verna, Ron and Sandy
Ed taught us a game called Farkle, played with six dice.  It turned out that he had made up some of his own rules in addition to the official ones, supposedly in the name of making the game more interesting. We suspected fraud, of course, but played according to Ed's rules anyway.  As it turned out, he was exonerated by virtue of his miserable final score, which was only slightly less miserable than mine.  Sandy, on the other hand, was the winner and demonstrated her good sportsmanship by declaring herself "Farkle Queen for Life" and demanding that I call her a limo, which I promptly did, to her face.  That's the last thing I remember.

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