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Emily Frankel. All rights reserved.

Rose – page3
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rose_quote3b"You're the one with boyfriends, not me." Bracing herself for a Ginger lecture on getting a life, Rose rearranged the coffee mugs, pretending she didn't know where the conversation was heading. "Who are you talking about?" "Edwin Winslow, that cool dude in the sound booth. You and he make beautiful music together Rose."

"'Cool dude.' You sound like my daughter."

"I've checked him out at the supermarket. He's single, divorced or separated." Twice married, twice divorced Ginger had just broken up with her latest sleep-over friend. "You can tell from the groceries."

"You can?" Rose caught a glimpse of the custodian talking with Edwin Winslow. Jeans, shirt with open collar, plaid sweater, an easy- going college professor outfit that somehow warred with his disciplined posture, his young-old, or was it an old-young face? From a distance he could be thirty-five, prematurely gray, or fifty, in very good shape.

"Definitely bacheloring it," Ginger murmured, watching Winslow fiddling with the dials on the audio machine. "Small-size everything in his shopping cart—small dish detergent, small bag of popcorn, and microwave dinners. You should have seen the females in the checkout line, giving him the eye!"

"Ginger, let's rearrange the desserts. You go over and introduce yourself to him later. Tonight's going to be a big night for desserts!"

Later, straightening the dollars in the donation bucket to make room for more, Rose watched Ginger approach Edwin Winslow and ask him for a dance. Saw them, man and woman nicely fitted together, Ginger’s arm on his shoulder, his arm on her waist, chest to breast, legs left to right, right to left synchronizing. And for a moment a longing came over Rose, visions of dancing, hugging, kissing, flashes of ordinary everyday frolicking, not sex but sexy doings so vivid that she laughed out loud, had to close her eyes to banish the images and get back in the present. Tell a customer, the couple who was asking for ice-cream, "Just pastries here but the booth over there has twenty-two flavors from Howard Johnson's."

Ginger returned to their booth fluffing her "Orphan Annie" red head of curls. "Winslow's neat, Rose! If my therapist doesn't stay over tonight, I'm going to phone him for a date."

"You're spending the night with your therapist?"

"Why not? My ex took all his things when he left. Dr. Romano and I have been sending signals to each other during therapy for weeks! We've had the condom conversation."

"Condom conversation?"

 "Who, when, what’d ya use—you gotta know." Ginger peeked at Rose's wrist watch. "If you've got things under control..."

"You're a dear for helping. I can manage just fine." Rose handed Ginger her beaded bolero jacket and amazing hat, all feathers, like part of a bird costume—Ginger worked hard at passing for twenty-something, not forty. "I just hope your hat won't get you attacked by any save the dwindling species ladies."

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