I was having a bit of the January doldrums. All the excitement of an over-the-top exciting December had faded and passed, and now there just wasn’t much to look forward to except the promise of summer and warm weather, which seems so far off. Going to work in the dark and returning in the dark was wearing me down. Come on, daylight savings time! I had no plans for the weekend (as usual), and the only thing on my agenda was to relax and try to gather my thoughts and maybe come up with a plan for a new direction for my future. Pretty heady stuff, huh? After all, I don’t want to lose perspective on who I am or what’s important to me…not that I have a whole lot of control over that right now. So all I wanted to do this Friday after a rough week was retreat to my warm, cozy bed, which is exactly what I did.

leprechaunThen came Saturday – I’ll just hang out and get some things done around the house…or so I thought.  The day dawned with a surprise visit from a friend and his friend.  I hadn’t had a Bloody Mary for quite some time, but we indulged.  A suggestion was made to go to Atlantic  City.  And suddenly the winter doldrums turned into spring – at least it put a spring in my step. ROAD TRIP…why not?  Off we went to sin city to have some fun. The guys headed for the blackjack tables while I wandered around the slot machines.  “Top of the Mornin’ ” beckoned me because if you know anything about me and my favorite Irishman, Mr. Murphy, you would know that would be my only choice.  Plus, free drinks?  Wow and yum…life is good. So I play this fun (penny) machine with bells and whistles and Irish music and a leprechaun dancing and talking.  I started talking to Mr. Murphy (in my mind, of course, since he has passed, although he’s still with me in spirit…) and I’m saying stuff like, come on, Mr. Murphy – let’s win one for the Irish!  Suddenly three shamrocks appear and the machine goes wild…cha ching.  Then it did it again…cha ching and cha ching and boy, was I smiling. I played and I played, and it was all good stuff. Now, big gamblers would laugh at me when I say that winning 50 bucks was a big deal, but after a while I walked away and cashed it out.  And you know what? Everyone else lost their shirts!

On the way home we stopped for a bite at a cute restaurant called “The Hacienda.” We walked in and the music was playing and people were dancing, and if you know me, you know how I LOVE to dance.  And so I started dancing and handsome young Steve joined me and taught this old dog a few new tricks.  Then wild and wonderful Bruce whirled me around the dance floor to a charming “Lovers’ Waltz” by Jay Ungar and Molly Mason, and Kentakit Ken and I boogied to a disco song.  I felt like the belle of the ball…so much FUN!

Sometimes life brings you unexpected surprises, odd and different and not what you would expect or even dream up on a dull January day.  Not necessarily big surprises but just plain old fun surprises and that’s what this weekend brought me.  I was sorry to see our friends leave on Sunday but am happy that they brought some enjoyment and some much-needed entertainment that was desperately needed.  It certainly was fun to let my hair down for a change.

The next time you’re feeling down get together with friends, have a Blood Mary, take a road trip, take a chance and then dance! Try a charming “Lovers’ Waltz.” You’ll be glad you did!

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