Sol, my impressions of our recent night out…here is how I recall it beginning:
“I am sorry, sir, your reservations are not ready just yet. May I get you a table on the veranda while you wait?”
I was not impressed. I had prepared this evening as a reward for Sol’s stellar behavior of late, and I didn’t want anything to ruin it.
“I assume we can smoke on the terrace…?” And with that, the maître d’ led us to a table overlooking the water. The night air was heavy and still, but not too warm. I decided this could be nice. Sol dutifully allowed herself to be seated, and I slowly allowed my impression of our host to improve. It was easy to see that he had been doing this a long time. He had a distinguished presence, with a hint of snob.
“May I have your waiter bring you something from the bar?”
As I looked at him, Sol’s hand intruded into our view, open and asking. The bright white tips of her nails made one very aware of what her hands were doing, her fingers curved slightly, as if they were already holding the cigars she was ‘asking’ for. As I produced two cigars from my vest pocket, I saw the maître d’ focus intently on them, his eyes traveled with them from my hands to hers, then abruptly returned to looking directly at me. I felt certain I was being judged. ‘Night life’ is goofy; people place so much effort into the impressions they make, or try to make. I guessed that he recognized the brands, both slightly expensive; a Romeo & Julietta Toro, with its dark Habano wrapper, and a milder Ashton Corona. I secretly wished he would be there long enough for me to see his expression upon discovering he was wrong about which one was mine.
As the elegant distraction of Sol’s hands was now gone, the maître d’ renewed his query by lifting an eyebrow, remaining motionless, waiting for my bidding.
The declaration sounded like someone stating their name rather than selecting from a menu, and it contained one quality I don’t think the maître d’ expected: it was feminine.
“Any Speyside single malt will do. Neat.”
The end of Sol’s sentence was punctuated with the guillotine snap of my cigar being cut. I was impressed with the control this man had, his eyes never moved from mine. He had not even blinked. Sol broke the wordless tête-à-tête once more, placing my Corona on the table before me. Crossing her legs and slightly reclining, she clasped her teeth around her Toro and lifted the lighter to the task at hand, leaving a black stiletto dangling in the middle of the conversation the maître d’ and I were supposedly having.
After a long moment of trying not to look at Sol’s legs, I broke the silence, lifting my eyebrows as if to say, “anything else?”
He blinked, and turned his glance very intentionally to Sol. His eyes walked up her body from the slit of her dress to intense glow of her cigar as she drew on it. Sensing what was not being hidden, she withdrew the cigar, tilted her head and exhaled her cigar into the night sky, then lowered her gaze onto the maître d’ and smiled, brightly.
He turned to me and respectfully offered, “Yes, Sir.”
Not being able to resist the moment, I winked at him as I lit my cigar.
Thank you for a wonderful life, Sol.
Daddy Loves You.