I Should Know Better But…

I threw on a silver mini dress with silver shoes for a holiday party at one of our local sailing clubs. I have known many of the folks at this club for several years and thought that this would be a pretty sedate group of older folks who would enjoy conversation, cocktails and the beautiful clear cool night on the bay. The service and food was lovely as the evening started; enjoyed greeting some folks that I hadn’t seen in a couple of years.

As the alcohol flowed, the party became more rowdy but still sedate by sailing standards. I stepped outside in the early evening night air to catch a bit of the breeze off the bay. This sailing club is pretty small compared to our usual club which is multi-level this it gets stuffy pretty quickly once the main social area filled. The music became louder, the fire hotter; the cool breeze felt wonderful and refreshing. I sipped my Sam Adams as the moon reflected in the choppy water of the bay. Everything punctuated by the lights of Christmas everywhere in the downtown area where this club is located.

As I enjoyed my beer and the scenery, a tall gentleman approached. He looked somewhat familiar; I greeted him with my usually cheery greetings and smile. “Is that you?”, he asked. Well, as I looked at him carefully, I said who I was. He didn’t seem to recognize me. I have to admit that I did look a bit different; hair pulled back into a gray ponytail and being much thinner from my long-distance running. He kept saying that he knew me from somewhere other than the club. I kept mentioning my work with the sailing community; largely doing physical exams and checks. He still searched for where I might have come into his life.

Trust me, this man was not someone I had sailed with or worked with as I spoke with him more and more. Finally, I needed another beer and was getting a bit chilly in the evening air. He followed me inside and sat opposite me as I claimed a large leather chair next to the fire to listen to the music and enjoy the decorations. He asked me if I would like to dance which is something that I do not do very well. I am ok with fast music but the slow stuff doesn’t work for me.

He grabbed my arm as pulled me close to his body. I felt myself stiffen up in a bit of a shock but thought I might be able to follow his lead. The next thing I knew, he was staring down the front of my dress and held me in something of a death grip. I asked him to relax a bit and tried to back out of his embrace. Just as I was about to protest, one of my mates stepped up and “cut in”, saving me from this man. I was mortified but grateful; soothing my nerves with a shot of bourbon this time. My friend said that this man was a “creep” and that he didn’t like the way that he was trying to hold me. I should have known.

Well, a couple more holiday parties to attend  with one luncheon but I am sticking to the medical ones this time. My former burn unit has one tomorrow night with dinner and dancing. I think I am partied out even for me. Besides, I miss a friend very much. Hope I see him in the new year as he makes me laugh.


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