~Tuesday, October 04, 2011

The Love Boat

That night a party was being held on the lido deck of the boat. Our group had all managed to stay together (minus BB's wife, who I never really saw again after that night; minus Katie, who was back in bed). The party was hosted by the break dancers and a DJ played those songs that require choreographed dance moves (on a related note: The Mississippi Mudslide is really the biggest pile of shit I've ever had to dance.)

The girls were all out on the deck dancing while the boys ordered buckets of beer. The Boston Brother quickly pointed out Tallahassee standing on the deck above us, watching us dance. When the party had broken up, I wandered up the stairs to meet him and his roommate. I felt awkward purposely seeking him out; we've always just run into each other at the discotheque.

He didn't make me feel awkward though. We leaned against the railing and I pointed out the various friends he had heard about, but hadn't met. I shook my glass.

"You're out," he noticed.

"Yeah. Want to walk with me back to my room for a refill?"

That was the only thing about drinking the contraband liquor. Walking to a bar to get a Diet Coke and then walking back to the cabin to spike it with rum was a bit of a pain in the ass. However, it did keep me mobile and counteract at least some of the calories we consumed on vacation. And because of the central location of my room, it wasn't that terrible of a walk. I estimate it took the same amount of time as flagging down a waiter and having them go to the bar. And when I got my bill at the end of the trip, it was hundreds of dollars less than other people's.

I opened my room and tried to sneak in. Tallahassee courteously waited outside. Katie, as usual, was in bed asleep. As I began the Zombie Walk towards the dresser, she flicked on the light.

"Sorry, just refilling," I whispered. She was used to the disturbance by now.

"I heard you giggling. Is Tongue of Tongue and Groove outside?" she asked, using the nickname Harvey had dubbed us the first night.

"Yes, do you want to meet him?"

She nodded.

I swung the door open. "Here he is!"

Tallahassee waved awkwardly. "We're going to meet Harvey's Husband and the Boston Brother at the discotheque. You want to come?" I asked her.

She snuggled in her comforter. "No, I'm good here," she smiled.

We went to the discotheque and danced just like we had every other night. The Boston Brother danced with the curly-haired brunette again. The entire group went for pizza again.

It was 3 a.m. I pushed my pizza plate away from me. "Ugh, I'm wonky," I announced.

There was never a problem with sea sickness throughout the trip, but as the boat left Cozumel and headed back towards the States, something had changed. Either the boat was going faster as it returned home, or we were battling the ocean currents, or something. But it was harder to walk without stumbling. The rocking of the boat was felt at all times. We'd teeter through the hallways sober the same way we teetered through the hallways drunk. I wasn't sea sick, but I was noticeably off. I found that walking as high up on the boat as I could made me feel better.

I looked at Tallahassee, "I need to go for a walk."

"Let's go." This wasn't our first walk of the evening. It wasn't even our third.

We stood up from the table. Harvey's Husband and the Boston Brother barely looked up. "Have a good night, y'all," they said. Just like that. I was getting up and leaving them in the restaurant with a boy and they didn't notice. This was not part of the accountabilibuddy code.

We tried to climb to the top of the ship, but it was roped off due to high winds. That might have something to do with the rocking. The winds were so strong that they bit at my ankles with every step I took, trying to snatch them out from under me.

Tallahassee grabbed my hand as we casually crossed each deck, with me murmuring about feeling wonky. There was an ease between us. He was a good ol' boy from the South: soft-spoken and agreeable in nature. He was nurturing with his hand rubbing up and down my back any time I said I didn't feel well. He was 34, but he didn't act like any 34-year-old I knew. He was a little more seasoned. The wrinkles in the corners of his eyes demonstrated this.

Hand in hand, we returned to our floor. We were standing in the grand lobby. It was quite the view to see the atrium extend seven floors above us with elevators and a marble staircase and a grand piano and then realize you're standing in a freaking boat.

"Do you want to lay down in my room?" he asked casually.


Instead of turning right down my hallway, we turned left down his.

"I'm probably not going to sleep with you," I said matter-of-factly. But the answer was already in my statement: "probably" meant I could be talked into it.

"Not a problem," he responded easily.

His roommate was already asleep and casually snoring. We climbed in his twin bed and he spooned me. We cuddled for about three minutes before he made his move.

We began to make out. He rolled me under him and then he did the one thing that always changes my "no" to a "yes." The term "slump busting" had also come to mind. It's been awhile and he's a nice boy and this might end my dry spell.

"Your roommate's gotta go," I whispered. I'm not in college anymore. I'm too old to have sex with someone in the same room.

"He's asleep."

"He's gotta go."

Tallahassee woke him up and told him he had to go for a walk. To give the roommate credit, he woke up and grabbed his shirt and shoes and left the room without complaining.

It was sex. It was what it was.

His roommate had tried to come back once, but we weren't done. This time he muttered. "You have 10 more minutes!" he grumbled as he left again.

It turned out he walked outside and thought he'd curl up on one of the deck chairs, but it had rained and the cushions were wet. He went and sat in the computer room, laying his head on the desk.

He had given us more than 10 minutes before he returned to his room and fell back asleep. Sleeping in the same room as two boys was much different than with Katie. For one, both of these boys snored.

I sat up in the middle of the night in full panic mode. I woke up from a dead sleep not being able to breathe. My cough had returned. My body shuddered and tears squeezed from my eyes as I tried to inhale between racking coughs. Tallahassee got up and gave me a bottle of water and rubbed my back as I doubled over, trying to breathe. This continued. The cough went on and on and on.

"You done yet?" mumbled the roommate.

Tallahassee laid back down and put his arm around me. These boys didn't sign up for this. They didn't decide to share a room with a girl with a horrible cough that would wake them up in the middle of the night. I felt my hand across the floor until I could find every last of article of clothing I had.

I kissed Tallahassee. "I'm going back to my room," I whispered.

"Come and get me when you wake up," he said sleepily.


I snuck out the room and into the hallway. Jesus, it was light outside. Even on the water, I could tell it was early morning light. Most were still asleep and would not witness my dash of shame back to my cabin, thong in pocket.


Anonymous said...


j said...

Finally the part about the boy! Although I am still wanting to hear more...

J said...

Now this is the way to do a vacation...

Aritza Goddess said...

Woohooo! I wanna hear the rest :)

Anonymous said...

"when I got my bill at the end of the trip, it was hundreds of dollars less than other people's"

Wow, you are such a clever, money-savvy girl! I'm impressed.

Gretta James said...

was the sex good tho?

freckledk said...

You should have sent the roommate over to sleep with Katie!

Glad you had fun, Love!

Anonymous said...

Minus the coughing, it sounds like a wonderful time! Anxious to hear more.

Bathwater said...

The room mate did seem to spoil things a bit, I would have left him sleeping or sent him to sleep with Katie like freckledk suggested.

How could Katie have slept through the whole trip, sounds like something I would do.

Anonymous said...

"I'm probably not going to sleep with you"


Anonymous said...

Love your blog! How is dating on a cruise ship compare to dating in real life? Is it scary or comforting to know the guy can't really escape you/you can't escape him? :)

treacle said...


Scrumps said...

Go Sarah! :P

The question is if you had more and if you've been in touch since!

Also - look at you and your willpower! ;):P

CJ said...

Sarah, your writing is becoming really good. I've always enjoyed your stories, but you are coming into your own voice in a new way lately. It's time for a book proposal.


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