Last night, on the spur of the moment, my date and I drove downtown to the community theater to see the play, “Dirty Rotten Scoundrels.”
What an experience.
The production was dreadful. Not only did the leading lady sing off-key, but the actors’ performance was also appalling. It was high school talent at best, and I overheard fellow patrons express their disappointment at the performance and the hot stuffiness of the theater. It seemed that the air conditioning was turned on only for the adjoining café. Perhaps this was a cunning move on the theater’s part: Leave the air off in the theater so that patrons can buy cold drinks in the café during intermission. It makes good business sense, upon which I am sure they capitalized, because the line in the café at intermission was long, and it snaked out the door.
So we left the theater at intermission, as did many others.
We walked the sidewalks around the playhouse. We discovered tiny frogs that climbed the walls of the Cultural Center. We walked the side streets and main streets, enjoying the old historic neighborhood and its long-standing houses. We even walked up the stairs of an old historic house, which is now a museum. We peeked in every window until we saw a mass of brown fluffiness by a door. Was it a dog? Was it a raccoon? Was it a pile of towels? We didn’t get close enough to find out.
We continued walking the streets. There was a wedding celebration at a restaurant We listened to an Elvis impersonator from the sidewalk. There was an early 1950s Packard automobile parked on the parkway teasing me with its still mysterious story.
We found ourselves in an ice cream parlor and had icy lime coconut gelatos. The parlor still had the shadows of the old house it once was: tall baseboards, wide trim, and plaster walls. Barely visible were the ghosts of walls where once were bedrooms and the like.
As we continued down deserted sidewalks, we marveled at the clear night and the quarter moon. It was late – practically midnight – and we returned home, ready to face another adventure as it would present itself, knowing that a dirty rotten play could turn into an evening of silver and gold.
©2022, excerpt from “Tales from Yodel-O Land”