“Mom,” my son Jason said over the phone a few days ago from Atlanta, “I’ve got to be in Savannah on Tuesday, and Blair is going to be in California. She won’t be home until late Friday night, and I won’t be back home until Sunday – BUT I will be at the lake playing in a golf tournament this weekend. Do you think you and Ted might babysit Bayla for us while we’re both out of town? I can pick her up when the tournament is over on Sunday.”
Well, yeah – I said – that’s what retired moms do – help out their overworked kids. Of course, I’d much rather be babysitting their CHILDREN, but that hasn’t happened yet (sigh).
Since Jason was heading for Savannah, I offered to meet him in Macon so he could just jump on Interstate 16 and have a straight shot to the coast. Then I called Dawn.
“Wanna go on a road trip?” I asked.
“Yes,” Dawn said.
“Don’t you want to know where to?” I said.
“Don’t care.” she said.
And so it was that this morning I picked Dawn up at her house at 9:15, and we rode to the new Macon Mall. The plan was to get in three hours of good shopping and eat lunch before Jason arrived with the dog at 1:30. My shopping list included some summer tops, a pair of walking shoes, a couple pair of summer jammydukes, and a skirt I could wear with different tops to church on the island. Dawn’s list included summer tops also and a new pair of sandals.
I’ve known Dawn for several years, but it is only during this winter (after she stopped working) that she and I have really gotten to spend a lot of time together. Going to Winter Festival together in February and starting to walk together this spring, we’ve really had the time to get to know each other well, and it’s amazing how alike we are in many ways. Neither of us are party animals, we both love flannel pj’s and will stay in them all day if given that option, neither of us feels the need to talk constantly when we’re together, we both love watching movies, and we are both constantly fighting the battle of eating too much (well, dang, everything just tastes so good!). We have laughingly commented that we must really be twins separated at birth (although that would be a little difficult since I’m at least 12 years older than she is). We even discovered a few years ago that we were both from the small town of Sylvester – but when she was in the first grade, I was graduating from high school. Long story short, we think alike on a lot of things, and our senses of humor are almost identical – which is great, because when I say something I think is hilarious, Dawn will crack up laughing – and vice versa.
At the mall we went our separate ways in each store, spent 10 minutes looking, then circled back to report that everything we found that we liked cost $79 – and we were NOT going to pay $79 for a plain white t-shirt, or a green sleeve-less top, or a hot pink short-sleeved shirt. On to another store – shoes this time. Every pair I picked up and turned over had a $72 or $79 price sticker on the bottom! Pajamas were the same. A two-piece cotton capri pajama set was almost $80. I mean good grief – we weren’t in Nordstrom’s or Sak’s – this was Dillard’s, Belk’s, Coldwater Creek, and Chico’s. And yes – there were items in each of these categories on sale for less. But I’m too old to wear tie-dyed shirts, tops made out of scarfs, and blouses you can see through – which was all that seemed to be on sale. And speaking of see-through (you are NOT going to believe this) – I actually saw a bra that cost $84 (which I kinda understood when I looked at the size). It was a 38″K” – seriously there was enough material in that thing to cover the whole back seat of my car!
By 12:30 we were starving and ducked into a “wings” place for lunch. It was one of those restaurants where the menu is eight pages long. I HATE those things because I think I have to read every item so I don’t miss something really good. We studied it while the waiter came by three times to see if we were ready. I finally looked at Dawn and said, “I want the Supreme Nacho Platter, but it is too big for one person.” Dawn just grinned, “I was just about to ask if you wanted to split the Supreme Nacho Platter.” See – separated at birth.
Jason was there right on time with Bayla, who jumped in the backseat and promptly went to sleep for the trip to the lake. Dawn and I spent a grand total of $13.00 on our road trip – that was lunch and a tip, and we split it. As we were riding back to the lake, I was thinking back on our shopping day. It occurred to me that almost everything I pulled off a rack was something I held out to Dawn and said, “This would really look great on you.” Conversely, she would pull out a sweater or a jacket and say, “You could layer this over that black dress of yours to wear to the Grand one night for dinner.” I smiled.
Friendship is such a wonderful gift. Thanks, Dawn. Love you, girlfriend.
Header: Dawn and husband Stevie on the island last summer.