My regular readers know that I often write about my sister-in -law, Nely and her fiancée Sam. For those of you who are new here, I’ll backtrack a bit. Sam is very Italian and has a huge heart which is his greatest asset and his worst failing. Sam also has a misguided sense of obligation to his grown son who takes unfair advantage of him which occasionally puts a strain on Nely’s and Sam’s relationship. Now readers you’ll recall that Sam’s son was busted on marijuana charge last year, and his five foot alligator was confiscated by animal welfare, though they said it was the best kept reptile they had ever seen. What I didn’t tell you is that Sam’s son has managed to total the Mercedes Sam bought him and the BMW that replaced it.
When Sam and Nely can afford to they like to vacation and a couple of years ago, they took a trip to Cancun, where playfully they made up new identities for themselves. Nely was Natasha and Sam was Alexei her bald ex-KGB lover. All in all, they managed to fool quite a few people around the pool before confessing to the deception.
Last winter, Nely and I were both at low points, and one night as we were talking I asked Nely what her perfect man would be like. I can’t recall the whole conversation but it went something like this:
N: His name would be Raphael.
L: And he’s young.
N: Not too young.
L: About forty-four.
N: But he would love women in their fifties.
L: Naturally. He would have green eyes.
N: And be six foot three and well proportioned.
L: He’ll be blond
N. No, light brown and curly.
L: ( disappointed) Okay.
N: He’ll be a great kisser.
L: Yah, his name is Raphael, isn’t it?
N: He lives in Paris?
L: He owns an island in the Caribbean.
N: And he’s just waiting for us to turn up.
L: He’ll ask us to stay with him on his beautiful hacienda.
N: Where he has an art studio.
L: Big enough for all three of us to paint in. But not only that, he’ll be certified in seventeen forms of massage therapy.
N. And he loves giving pedicures.
L: He’s very generous with his money.
N: His father was Ferragamo, and he taught Raphael to cobble shoes, which is his hobby.
L: He’ll have to be Mormon so he can marry us both.
N: Do we have to be married?
L: Yes, because we need to inherit the island when he goes.
N: How ill we drink wine if he is a Mormon?
L: He’s lapsed.
N: What else?
L: He loves cats. Hundreds of them.
N: And he’s a yoga instructor.
L: And a great listener.
N: And affectionate, romantic and faithful to us both.
L: Have we covered everything?
N: And he’s mute!
Now I’ve told you before that Nely does have the powers, but usually she is too tired from taking care of her senile mother to even think about the universe or the law of attraction, much less use them. Last week, to celebrate the publication of my short stories I had a couple of glasses of wine and realizing I was lonely, I called Nely who was doing a little therapeutic drinking of her own.
‘Guess who walked into the office looking for a Realtor?’ Nely asks.
‘Someone I know?’
‘Man or woman?’
‘Bald Alexei. Bald, six foot four Russian Alexei. He wants me to call him Alyosha for short, ‘ she says in Russian accent.
‘Oh, that Alexei.( Reader, I’m not even surprised by her mystical and synchronistic experiences any more) Is he attractive?’ I ask.
‘Yes. He looks like former special forces.’
‘There something in the air. I can tell he’s attracted to me. And we have all the same interests.’
‘Well you haven’t been too happy.’
‘No but still, I am engaged to Sam.’
‘Let’s be logical. Does he have a job?’
‘He has his own business.’
‘Does he have a crazy son?’
‘They are selling their house, so they can buy a condo closer to to the train station so that Alyosha can drive Lev to work, ‘ she explains.
‘He can’t drive himself?’
‘Lev totaled three cars already.’
‘He doesn’t have a crocodile in the bathtub does he?’
‘No. He has a two foot long chameleon that turns colors. Green, he is upset.’ she says, assuming that Russian accent again.
‘You’re lying!’ By now both of us are howling with laughter.
‘Boga mi,’ she says, swearing to God.
‘I can’t come to my senses,’ I am gasping for breath.
‘There’s more, Lily. I got another call.’
Readers, my gasping has now turned into a full blown asthma attack, and I am developing a migraine from laughing so hard.
‘Raphael is buying an apartment for his twenty-eight year old son, because if he doesn’t, he is afraid the son will stay with him forever.’
‘This could only happen to you!’ I scream, frantically searching for my inhaler.
‘I know, right?’ she says. ‘I’ll be meeting him next week.’
Reader, I can hardly wait to see what she conjured up this time.