Monday, April 18, 2011

The Harem

I peer in the large window next to the front door as I wait for someone to answer the door bell. It looks like a harem scene from some Technicolor movie set in ancient Bagdad not a girls’ sleep-over party. Young females in brightly colored loose pajama pants and tight little tee shirts lounging around on couches and rugs while one girl plays the guitar. Their eyes highly painted, their toenails vibrant with nail polish…I see The Beast skipping in with her mane of black curly hair and ancient Egyptian eye makeup—all smiles with an armful of board games.

These early teenage years are full of odd contrasts. There is something so utterly gorgeous about these girls that it just takes your breath away and at the same time they seem to totally lack awareness of this beauty. This is what I find both comforting and scary.

I am standing outside the house because although normally I am cautious, sometimes I forget. An hour ago I dropped The Beast off at this sleep-over party house and drove away. Although not an old friend of the Beast, the girl host seems like a smart, confident child and The Man and I had gone to high school with her mother.

BUT…I heard the girl had a slightly older brother…and what exactly did the parents do? The last time I saw the parents they were at a Halloween Party… dressed a little oddly and I assumed they were in custom for the holiday. Yet, in this artsy-fartsy town, you should really never assume that type of thing. It was actually the older brother factor that was nagging at me…that and the fact that I had not seen parents at the drop off. I did, however, see a dog.

“The dog is my friend.” I thought---he is a means to get back into the house. I call The Beast on her cellphone—“You forgot allergy medicine and they have dog. I am going to drop some off.” I said nonchalantly so as not to tip her off to my real purpose for returning to the house—to spy.

Waiting for the door to open I take in everything like a film noir detective—nice house—older house and not too big, Toyotas in the driveway not BMWs or Audis, bookshelves full of books in the living room and then the best thing I see—the mother coming to answer the door.

What can I say—I am not perfect, but I am persistent.

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