A Naked Alliances Christmas

We’re getting close to Christmas and I thought I would swing by and check on my two leading characters from Naked Alliances, Richard Noggin, P.I. and Brandi, an exotic dancer. When I left them around the end of October, they were dining at Harbor Lights restaurant admiring the yachts moored on Tampa Bay.

Richard’s gay neighbors, Dave and Steve, decorated the palm tree in their front yard. I’d like to point out why palm trees don’t make good Christmas trees down here in Florida.

palm tree-christmas
Are words needed?

~~~

Brandi knocked at the door of the coral pink cottage in Thornton Park, her military-green canvas messenger bag slung over her shoulder. She rested the fir tree against a post. Richard opened the door in his boxers with a beer in his hand. “Oh, it’s you.”

“Who were you expecting? The date who likely stormed out when you undressed?”

“What’s the tree for? I don’t do Christmas.”

“This year you are.” She hugged the tree, pushing her way through the door. “I could use some help with this thing.”

“I’m allergic,” he said.

“And I’m not backing down. You’ve spent a week, since our four week vacation at the Lagoon, shut up in this house feeling sorry for yourself and we’re going to have Christmas.” Propping the tree against the living room window, she pulled back the blinds, went out onto the porch, lifted a cardboard box, and returned to the living room. “This is Christmas stuff I borrowed from the Parliament House.”

“Oh great, bobbles made from boa feathers and glittered, butterfly eyelashes.”

“They’re shiny and sparkly.”

“So are Harley parts.”

“Don’t be such a spoil sport and grab yourself a few.” Standing the tree upright, she forced it into the stand she had brought with her.

Richard slugged back his last swallow of Miller Lite, set his can on the coffee table and reached into the box, pulling out a wrapped gift with his name on it. “Awww, you shouldn’t have done this.”

“You can open it now or put it under the tree.”

“I haven’t gotten a Christmas present in years.”

“It’s nothing, really, just a little something to lighten your mood.”

Richard tore into the paper, opened the box and grinned ear to ear. Snapping open the case, tears welled in his eyes. Trying not to blink, he reached into the case. “A golden Desert Eagle, 50 caliber, hand cannon, and she’s a pretty girl. This is too much.”

“I thought you might need a replacement for Desiree, since you had to feed her to the alligators. Do you really think that was necessary?”

“More than necessary.” Grabbing her around the neck, he pulled her close and kissed her cheek. “I did a bit of Christmas shopping for you, too.” He opened the coat closet door and pulled out a monstrous-sized bag from the Millennial Mall. “Haven’t had time to wrap it though.”

“You didn’t!”

“I did. I have to confess I didn’t know my way around the store, but I asked for the best.”

Brandi snatched the bag, looked inside and screamed. “It’s a leather, large-frame Prada tote. I’ve never owned a real purse before. It’s beautiful. For a guy who doesn’t do Christmas, you did it quite well.” She slung the bag onto her shoulder, pulled the purse close and sniffed it.

“It was the biggest they had and the lady tells me they’re quite fashionable. I know how you like to have all your necessaries with you, and they do come in handy.”

Brandi grabbed him around the neck and squeezed. He winced, but hugged her back as best he could.

“You’re the best boss ever!”

“Partner, the best partner.”

Celebrating Winter Solstice

The season officially changes today to wintertime with the Winter Solstice celebration. This marks the beginning winter_solstice_party_invitation-r33d79c2e5cb047998505147846a191f0_imtet_8byvr_512of our snowbird season. Tonight our friends meet at a home and gather around the fire pit. We draw a card from a deck. The host has a different deck and he draws out a card from his deck.  Whoever has the matching card picks a gift and then the next person can choose to take a gift from someone else or pick a new gift. The gifts are sometimes very nice ones, but most of the time they are gag gifts or something really unusual.  Sometimes you end up going home with what you brought. There is laughter and a whole year of stories to tell.

The party has all of the usual party favorites, food and drinks. There is soft music and dance music, but mostly it is a celebration of the season.  We have a mild seasonal change here in Florida at wintertime with cooler temperatures in the daytime and at night. It can get quite cold here in Central FL in January and February. It is often a wet and windy cold.

For us, the Winter Solstice is not so much about winter spirits, frost, snow, sleet, ice and frigid temperatures. It is more about the return of folk from up north. The snowbird friends are back for the season and there is a sense of joy and happiness in meeting these people again. The streets are busier and the community has a temporary growth. Reuniting and spiritually reconnecting with old friends and knowing that they are safe and healthy brings us a sense of peace and pleasure.  The return of the snowbirds, who stay from winter till spring, is the primary cause for our celebration.  We are glad to see them return, year after year.

However you celebrate the coming of the winter season in your community, I wish you joy!
Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Have a Happy Holiday season !

We will be celebrating Christmas with my daughter and her family and my stepson on Sunday.  Then, we are off to Naples to visit more family and play on the boat while a friend house sits for us and tends to the dogs, cat, and bird.

I will not be posting next week, but may be checking your posts and making some comments via the iPad.