The other day I was out shopping with a girlfriend. We decided to stop into some of the boutiques along the coast. This is not something I do often because most of the boutiques are very exclusive and far beyond my price range. It can be fun once in awhile to go check out the latest and greatest though, so that's what we were doing.
I have noticed over the years that these little boutiques are often owned by very wealthy women. I think they became bored with their leisurely lives. Having nannies and housecleaners and personal assistants leaves them with too much time on their hands. They ask rich hubby to buy them a little shop to keep busy. Instantly they have a small business as their hobby to prevent idleness.
We were the only patrons in one particular gift shop. I was admiring a few of the items wishing I could take them home with me. (Briefcase would instantly divorce me if I spent $2,000 on a knicknack no matter how cute it might be!) The shop was empty except for the owner. She was a nicely dressed woman in her mid-50's. She offered us coffee and we accepted because it was a cool, foggy, beach morning. The owner (I'll call her Mabel) was exceedingly friendly although I am sure she knew instantly that her store was far beyond our price limit. I got the feeling she just liked having us there and wanted to chat.
We had just started on our coffee and were wandering the shop when another woman (also mid-50's) stopped in to drop off a big box to Mabel. They were obviously close friends, and as the second woman left she leaned over and kissed Mabel good-bye … on the lips. My theory about the rich husband was immediately put into question.
Mabel's friend left and she flushed and looked a little embarassed at the public display of affection. Then Mabel proceeded to talk. Mabel did not just talk, Mabel had a story building up inside her, threatening to explode and she wanted (needed?) to share. And what a story it was ….
Mabel's friend (I'll call her Abigail) and Mabel are both married women. They are married to very wealthy men. Recently California passed a law allowing same sex marriage. Mabel and Abigail have decided they both will get divorced so they can get married to each other. Apparently, they have been in love for years but they've kept their feelings for each other a secret until recently. OK, maybe that isn't exactly the type of story you hear every day, but there's more.
Mabel and Abigail are grandparents to the same grandchildren. Are you confused? So was I. Mabel is the paternal grandmother and Abigail is the maternal grandmother of the same grandchildren. If you are married, imagine your mom running off with your spouse's mom. I think my jaw dropped to the floor as she told her story. I wanted to ask all sorts of questions, but I didn't. Like – how did you tell the grandpas/your husbands? And your kids? And your grandkids? And how did they all react? Instead I politely nodded and listened as if this is the type of story I hear every day.
My girlfriend and I spent, perhaps, a total of 45 minutes in Mabel's shop. When we left we thanked her for the coffee, commented on how beautiful some of the items in the shop are, and told her we'd stop back in again someday. Once we got back to the car my girlfriend turned to me and said, "Can you imagine Christmas this year in THAT family?"