High Stepping

When my mom passed away in 2009, my wife and I packed up our three kids and left the Washington area¬†where I worked downtown, and moved in with my eightysomething dad out in the country, on the Rappahannock River in Virginia. It’s what people around here call the homeplace, the family home.

When friends and family come visit, they’re sort of on vacation, so it’s like I’m on vacation too. This is not healthy. So I’m constantly adopting some new exercise regimen. Lately I’ve been taking a cardio class at the Y three times a week.

At the Y, as in most social situations, I’m 20-30 years younger than the people around me, mostly retirees. The class features exermusic hits of the ’80s, ’90s — and today.

“Say Paul,” the instructor said on her headset, “What is a funky cold medina, anyway? Paul’s probably the youngest one in here.”

“Cocktail?” I ventured, squatting.

“Cocktail!” the instructor said. “I hadn’t thought of that.”

In the back, two old ladies leaned into each other:

“What is it?!” one said. The other answered: “What did he say?”

I am mildly amused/disturbed by my situation. The older broads are nice enough though. Unless you touch their 12-pound weights. Don’t use their 12-pound weights.

They do not like that.

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