Friday, May 31, 2013

Ma chérie

Kennia rented a room at Miss Lily’s Respectable Ladies Boarding House. While she often was away from Charleston, she definitely liked her comforts during her time-off. Her room included a favorite over-stuffed armchair covered with a plethora of embroidered pillows as well as an elaborate vanity table with an unusually large mirror. She wished that there was some way she could have her comforts with her everywhere she travelled.

After arriving at the Boarding House she had a long sleep and a change of clothing. When she awoke she considered visiting the Public Bathes for a soak but decided that soap, water and a soft wash-cloth were sufficient for the moment. She’d slept through the rest of the day and now the evening breeze was cooling the sweltering city. Time to go out on the town!

As she headed down the stairs she chanced upon her friend Callie just returning home for the evening.
“Hey gal!. Good to see ya back home safe and sound.” Callie hugged her friend. “What are ya up to now? Ready for a night out?”
“You have got entirely too many questions, gal! I haven’t even unpacked properly!” laughed Kennia while hugging her in return. “I certainly want some decent food and I want it fixed by someone else while I just sit tight and give myself airs.”
“Sweetie, just let me get myself all put together and I’ll join you.”
The two friends went into Callie’s room so that she could change into her best hat and dress bodice with fringe around the hem. The room was a bit larger than Kennia’s but more sparsely furnished. Callie’s job in a factory didn’t pay as well as Kennia’s but it also didn’t involved being chased by (and sometimes shot at by) bad guys!

At 10 pm the evening was young and there still weren’t so many folks out on the town. Nightlife in Charleston didn’t truly come into its own until well after sunset when the ocean breezes cooled the cooking heat of the Charleston day. The city’s nightlife would not be in full-swing until midnight. The women ambled amiably through Tavern Row and onwards to the French Theatre. The French Theatre was quite lavish with an abundance of crystal chandeliers, bevelled mirrors and gilding.  However if one looked more closely, one could see just a touch of distress to the gilding as well as a missing crystal or two from some of the chandeliers. The French Theatre was a proud old lady who wore her years comfortably.

As regulars both women were greeted with cries and waves as they crossed the floor over to the bar.
“Your usual, mon ma chérie?” asked the bartender.
“Oui, Jean-Pierre” smiled Kennia. “il est bon d'être à ma maison!”***

***Author’s note. It has been a loooong time since I studied French in school and I have no one here to practice with so I apologize in advice for being very “rusty” with my language skills even though I am a person of French descent (on my grandmother’s side).

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