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[ Read more about author Matt R. Anderson ]

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A beach walking man falls in love with a local bartender from a local beach bar. But does she know him?

Gulf Shores

by Matt R. Anderson

I occasionally find myself wandering aimlessly, watching the sand as it passes through my toes, and finds a temporary resting spot on the tops of my feet. I always found it calming to listen to the waves as they crash against the beach and slowly climb as far up the sandy shore as momentum will let them. I watched as the bright orange colors mixed with the blues of the cloudless sky as the sun fell closer to the horizon. Wishing the sun would stay at the exact spot it was, more or less wishing time would stand still. Ignoring my wishes, the sun disappeared beneath the horizon.

After watching the beach as it grew dark, and quiet. I sat there looking up at the sky, wondering what I was going to do with the rest of the night. Having very little money until payday, I reached in my wallet to count exactly how much I had, forty-five dollars. I turned to see an empty beachside bar and suddenly craved a cocktail. It seemed perfect considering I was not a big fan of being in crowded places.

After ordering my drink, I sat looking at what some would say was nothing, I would say was everything, but whichever you wanted to believe, it was out of the window I was looking through. I stared, sipping on my well-made bourbon and soda. I noticed a reflection of what looked to be long hair move across the window. I quickly turned to see who this person might be. Sitting at the end of the bar, laughing at the dull and tasteless jokes the bartender was telling her, sat a beautiful brunette woman. She stood about five foot six, well figured woman, to me, she was absolutely beautiful. I figured she was the bartender's girlfriend, or wife coming to pick him up for work.

I couldn't help but stare as she watched the television on the other side of the bar, waiting for her man to finish counting the money in his cash register so he could close himself out for the night, and someone else could take over until last call. Whoever it was, hopefully they made the drinks the same way, I would hate to switch to a different bartender and not have the same tasting drinks.

The current bartender slammed the money drawer shut as he put the money in the gray zip up bank bag and walked out from behind the bar. The woman then stood, grabbed her purse and walked behind the bar. I instantly felt excitement, knowing that she would have to talk to me being the next bartender on shift. Especially being the only patron at the moment.

I sat for what seemed to be hours. In reality I spent only minutes, before she came over to ask if my drink needed to be refilled. I nodded yes. I didn't want to seem like I thought she was as beautiful as I actually thought she was. So I said nothing, in return I received nothing.

It took about three more pretty strong bourbon and sodas for me to drink up enough courage to say, "Hello, my name is Chad, and I really just wanted you to know you are the most beautiful woman I have ever seen in my life." She replied with a smirk and a slight blush on her face, "Thank you Chad, you are not too bad yourself." We talked for the remainder of her shift.

On our first date we went to a little place on the outskirts of the city limits. A place I have never been, or heard of for that matter. The place had a woman's name. I believe it was Martha's. It seemed to be a little run down shack. I counted five plastic tables for guests on a sand floor. The foundation seemed to be wooden planks driven into the sand deep enough to be sturdy. For a roof, a blue tarp draped over wooden trusses that connected the planks to make a sturdy structure.

I looked around for a few moments as she waved for me to join her at the table. I walked over and sat down with her. She was so beautiful, honestly, I forgot about everything when I was with her. My mind was hers. Maybe that's why I was so addicted to her company.

I made it a priority to see her whenever I had free time. She made it a point to tell me that she did not want to interfere with my life I was already living. She didn't care that I wanted her to.

After three months of seeing each other every day, and realizing we both had very strong feelings for one another, we decided to consider ourselves a couple. I was dating again, it sounded really weird to me to say I had a girlfriend. I never had thought I was going to have a significant other.

We did everything a couple would do, watch movies, go out to eat, get aroused by random things, such as a shirt that said, "Life is short, use condoms." After she read it she looked at me and asked if I had one, I said yes of course, and away we went, to the shopping mall restrooms.

As I was waking up one morning, I realized I wasn't at home. I rolled over to see the back of her head. I still couldn't believe that someone like her would ever fall for someone like me. I shook her gently to ask what she wanted for breakfast, she replied, "Waffles and eggs." I smiled, kissed her on her cheek, and told her I would bring it up to her.

We would walk for what seemed to be days, and say nothing, both being completely content with being in each other's company. I would randomly pull her hand up and kiss the top of it while she would make us sway back and forth as we walked a snake like line across the white sand of Florida's Gulf Coast.

It seemed as if she had to explain what every crab shell, dead fish, jellyfish, or whatever else had washed ashore was to me, and I did my best to pretend that I was interested in what she was saying. I could honestly say I loved the way her face lit up every time I said, "Really?" or "Wow, I did not know that." She could make the biggest, meanest, and the most upset of men smile with a little smirk on the left side of her lip.

I was running a little late for our afternoon walk on the beach to take her to work, I decided I would call her and tell her I would meet her at the bar where she worked, I wanted to have a few drinks anyways. When I walked through the door, she was watching the news, "Woman's body found floating two miles into the Gulf of Mexico, with ten stab wounds and all ten toes completely cut off with..." I reached up and changed the channel, "Hey, I was watching that you dick" she said.

"Why watch stuff like that, the news is always negative, let's watch something else."

"Like what, no sports are on, and we can't have the sound on to listen to any television shows."

"Well, let's just shut it off then, no need for the T.V. anyways."

"Whatever weirdo, I think it's about time for you to show me your place tonight after work, we keep sleeping at mine I want to see how messy my man is."

"We can't, my apartment complex is being bombed for bugs, and I have to stay at your house if that's okay?"

"Of course it's okay, we can stay at your place tomorrow."

"Tomorrow won't work either. A friend needs to rent it from me for the rest of the month. I usually get a hotel room while he is here."

"Why doesn't he just get a hotel room?"

"I don't know, he just doesn't, and he pays me more than enough for a hotel room so it all works out."

"Okay weirdo, you can just stay with me."

We smiled at each other as she leaned over the counter for a kiss. I had to think of something fast. There was no way I could take her to my home. I don't think she would appreciate the toes in my refrigerator.


Copyright © by Matt R. Anderson . All rights reserved unless specified otherwise above.

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