When Miss H invited me to her birthday function, I was a little trepidatious, Gentle Reader. Her brother and his girlfriend, Emilly – though once very dear friends of mine – are no longer on speaking terms with me; we haven’t seen one another for roughly two years. Further, Emilly’s mother Jem was due to attend; I thought that these people were out of my life, forever, and that my life was better for it.
So I deigned to attend; Miss H is rather dear to me, and so it was I found myself with Miss A, hurtling down the length of Highway 302, looking for a place known simply as “The Pasture”, apparently. It was sure to be a somewhat casual event, so we were dressed fairly simply – Miss A in a striped sundress with darling handkerchief pleats, myself in jeans and t-shirt with a summerweight blazer. We followed the vague directions, and were sure we were close, when we saw a field containing cows and a couple of those Reeves boys.
Now, the Reeves are a large family and I haven’t seen any of them in at least a decade, but I’ll be blessed if I didn’t recognize Michael right away. Miss A parked her car up the hill on the verge, and we were given a lift in the bed of a truck to where the party actually was, some miles back amongst the trees. Typical K. P. shenanigans – but what we didn’t know was that the whole party, a weekend-spanning-event, was dirtbike and muddin’ themed.
Miss A and I were appallingly overdressed – and I’d already dressed down! Alackaday.
We pull up; Miss A and I dismounted adroitly from the truckbed – naturally, I’d been riding side-saddle. We find our hostess, bearing gifts, which were warmly accepted; not wanting to monopolize her attentions, we took up station near the bar. We stayed there for the bulk of the evening, having the most marvelous conversation – and avoiding those who were avoiding us, who were directly across the field, on their own side. People wandered by, and mingled with us, anyhow. That’s the advantage of staying near the bar, you see. Further, the bartender, Tia, was utterly charming and one of my favorite new acquaintances.
Another new acquaintance, Julia, murmured in my shell-like ear “It’s time.” Miss H and I had been discussing the mysterious surprise her beau, Paul, had in store for her; Paul had been planning this for at least six months – and he’s not much given to grand gestures. Thus it was that he and Heidi took off on their dirtbikes for a lap in around something called “the pit” and all the other guests started piling into two pickup trucks. I assumed we were going to follow them or something for the dénouement. I was wrong; instead, this happened:
Heidi and Paul came racing back around the bend –
And Heidi cunningly did NOT crash her bike on seeing the sign. Paul, who’d gotten back first, dropped to one knee –
And then there was crying and hugging and cheering and a surfeit of love.
Congratulations, you guys. I know you’ll be exceptionally happy together.