#8 Cheating

I Had To! My Audience Wanted More.

One of the two group members who has been writing and waiting for it to happen admits at our next meeting that what she wrote has already happened. I do not tell them that my next installment is something I wrote many years ago, which has also already happened to me. Or at least part of it has already happened.

Chapter 2: Initiation

The next morning she was uncertain how to dress. What exactly did one wear to a spiritual adventure? In fact, what the hell was a spiritual adventure? She studied herself in the mirror and was not displeased. Only a few strands of gray in her hair. True, she weighed a little more than she should, but part of that could be attributed to the muscle she had developed in her practice. After much consideration she decided to wear what was comfortable: T-shirt, yoga pants with matching jacket and her favorite sandals. She liked sandals because she could stretch out her toes. After years of yoga, her toes were not always comfortable in enclosed shoes.

Monty was an hour late, and Renee, who had strongly been questioning the advisement of this adventure anyway, immediately berated him about promises and punctuality.

Not at all troubled by her admonishments, he commanded, “Let’s go,” with a gesture in the direction of his vehicle.

“We can take my car. I don’t ride motorcycles.”

“You didn’t ride motorcycles,” he corrected. “But now you do.”

She reconsidered for a moment, and then remembering her recent boredom, she stepped resolutely in the direction of the bike. With a grin Monty handed her a helmet, gallantly offering his hand in mounting. And they were off, sailing down the driveway! Renee felt an unaccustomed rush of adrenalin as they careened down the streets of suburbia and then headed south toward downtown. Finally, Monty veered off on a street that brought them into a section of the city Renee did not recognize. It felt bohemian, yet tolerant. Monty wound through the curvy streets and into a back alley marked by a quaint, hand-painted sign as “Vine Street.”

He parked his vehicle. This backyard corridor housed an exotic clutter of garbage cans overflowing with sweetly decaying foods from China, India, Russia, Morocco and other places from around the world. The sporadic clatter of restaurant pots and pans blended with high-pitched shouts in a dozen languages from chefs and dishwashers. Flies buzzed and settled on garbage can lids.

Tucked away in an inconspicuous corner of the alley, almost covered by wisteria, which was perhaps the only vine on Vine Street, was a narrow green door. Beside the door, like a gangly spinster, one lonely, fading, pink hollyhock bravely held up its head. Monty knocked. A couple of minutes and there was the sound of someone clattering heavily down the stairs. The door opened a crack, revealing a pair of brown twinkling eyes peering out from behind wire-rimmed spectacles.

“Monty!” the hefty woman exclaimed as she threw the door open wide, wrapping him in her beefy arms. Renee wriggled with discomfort as she considered the possibility this demonstrative woman might feel an obligation to do the same to her. But Monty quickly pulled himself out of the embrace to make an introduction, “Renee, I’d like you to meet Madame Serena Pappionovitch.”


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