Ingredients compliments of Ben Naga:
Ben: OK then. A bottle of champagne, a fez, a massage parlour and two chimpanzees. That shouldn’ t make you sound crazy.
Me: Here I go again, wish me luck with this one, that’s quite the crazy recipe, lol. I don’t think it makes me sound crazy at all but I worry about you now, Ben, LMBO :) As promised, here you go, hope you like!
_____________Fictional Story #4_______________
Lindy had just opened the doors of her new Thai massage parlour when a delivery arrived. A man stood at the door with a cage in one hand and a bottle of champagne in the other.
“Oh, those baby chimps are something else, aren’t they just darling?” she said, as she signed for receipt of the champagne basket, excited to read the gift card she knew was from Richard. The only other time she’d had champagne in her life, this brand of real champagne, was when he asked her to marry him.
The courier took back his clip board and started to leave.
“Wait! You forgot your cage, Warren!” Lindy said, reading the name embroidered on his shirt.
“No, that’s your cage now,” Warren said, shifting his long hair out of his eyes and resettling the baseball style cap on his head.
“I can’t have animals here, this is a place of business. You have to take them back,” she said.
“The problem is, ma’am, I wouldn’t know where to take them to. You just signed for them. They’re yours.”
Lindy didn’t know what to say and while she was occupied by the confusion of the whole situation, Warren made a swift escape. Lindy ran her slender hands through her short shorn locks. This wasn’t the great beginning she’d hoped for.
Her grand opening didn’t look so grand now. Saddled with two baby chimps in a cage and a phone that wasn’t ringing at all on her shiny, teak reception desk, Lindy flunked down on one of the blue upholstered waiting area chairs next to the chimps with the banana she’d brought in her lunch. She knew they had already eaten banana by the way they grew so excited watching her peel it so she halved the banana and poked it, a half each through the cage slots to the chimps. They chowed down like they hadn’t eaten in months. She was trying to figure out a way to give them a drink of water but realized she was hungry herself.
“My little Banana Boys, aren’t you cute?” she said, while eating the salad she’d prepared of greens, nuts and dried fruit.
Spending three years in Thailand for her specialized massage training, she had seen some sights. But none had prepared her for a situation like this.
By the time she finished her lunch, she decided the only thing to do was call the local animal protection authorities. They would know what to do. Happy with that, Lindy hung her “back in 5 min” sign on the outside doorknob. Not that it mattered, the only visitor she’d had so far today was the paralegal from the law firm across the hall who seemed more bent on being nosy than in the services Lindy offered. There were a couple of phone calls, one from a person wanting to book an appointment so that was her first “real” client and the other was from Richard who said he would see her for the “christening” of her new space at four on the dot and take her out for a celebration dinner.
The washroom was small but adequate for clients. Before leaving, Lindy glanced over everything to make sure it was all in place. She’d painted the walls with an aged plaster texture reminiscent of weathered walls she’d seen in a hotel room on vacation in France, walls aged naturally from the patina of life. The oval Chippendale mirror hanging over the sink was from her grandmother who was always in Lindy’s corner, cheering her on all of her life, even now, from above. Serendipitous messages showed up in Lindy’s life constantly and the signature was always her grandmothers. Lindy couldn’t remember much about her grandfather, except that he liked to wear a red fez, even on hot days inside the house. Her grandmother chastised him for this but he never took it off. He said it was because he never traveled further than downtown so he would wear Israel on his crown. The truth is he’d found the Fez in a second-hand shop when he started losing his hair, the label said made in Israel. Many said it was really his vanity, that he’d hated going bald, that the Fez was some kind of outer protest against it. To Lindy, it wasn’t unusual, it was just part of him, part of who he was.
A ringing telephone that, at first, Lindy did not realize was hers had reached the sixth ring before she answered it.
“Hello!” Lindy completely forgot to say Riverside Thai Massage, may I help you?
“Do you still have those two chimps?” the man on the phone asked.
“Yes I do. Is this Warren?”
“Yeah, but I can’t come back for them, I don’t have time. There was a screw-up in the paperwork here. The guy who owns the chimps is going to come by to pick them up and give you back your tree.”
“My tree? Oh, nevermind. What about this paperwork here? How do I undo this? You said I signed for those chimps before you left?” she asked.
“Don’t worry about it, the guy who is coming to pick up his chimps has all the new paperwork and he’s bringing a set for you.”
“Good to know. Does he know I close at four?”
“I’ll let him know right now,” Warren said
“Well, give me his num-” Lindy was cut off, Warren already gone. Again.
“You Banana Boys are really cute,” she told the chimps, “but you are stinking up the place and I can’t have that. You know what I mean? I love animals and I’ve even been an animal rescue volunteer. But I’m trying to run a business here, fellas.”
The sun moved fully from the east and was slanting down in from a western sky when Lindy’s wind chime from Tibet sounded, the breeze from the opening door set it singing. Into her office stepped a man wearing a handlebar moustache and a red fez just like the one her grandfather once had glued to his head. Lindy felt thrust back into an earlier era and thought what a good subject this man would be for photography, one of her favorite leisure pursuits. The problem was, she was trying to stifle giggles born of being so sober around her staid grandfather that the contrast to this overly stuffed fez wearing man collecting chimps was gnawing at her funny bones.
“I’m from the Winston Travelling Carnival,” he announced, setting down a healthy, six-foot palm tree in her waiting area as he spoke.
“Ah, I see. Okay, well, thank you for the tree delivery. Now, you have some papers for me?” Lindy asked.
They exchanged the papers, he picked up the cage and opened the door.
“Wait,” Lindy said.
“What do baby chimps do in a travelling carnival?”
The man’s handlebar moustache seemed to be twitching now.
“Oh, they’re just on display for people who’ve never seen one before. They don’t really do anything, they just grow up,” he said.
“Are they safe?” Lindy asked.
“Absolutely. They are behind glass in their own natural habitat so people can’t even touch them,” he said.
“Well, thanks again for taking care of them. You should come by and see the carnival before we move on.”
“I will, ” Lindy said.
Her hand was already on the telephone when the door clicked shut. It was a good thing she had the animal protection number out on her desk. Richard and the champagne would just have to wait. She never expected her first clients to be so hairy and, though she’d never held a grand opening before, she was going to take full advantage of the one just presented to her by the Banana Boys.
November 24 2011 (c) JAuroraMorealist
~(PS I know I “told” instead of “showed” but hey, I can always flesh things out later in a more meaningful way. Just going for the finish line right now, here’s the poem)
champagne, massage parlour, chimpanzee in a fez
another hatless, wool business suited, seeking lustful pleasure
November 24 2011 (c) JAuroraMorealist