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    Valkyrie
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
Note: While authors are asked to place warnings on their stories for some moderated content, everyone has different thresholds, and it is your responsibility as a reader to avoid stories or stop reading if something bothers you. 

You've Been Selected! - 1. You've Been Selected!

Congratulations! You’ve been selected to attend the Ponies on the Beach Event in West Palm Beach, Florida!

I squealed when I saw the email and did a little dance in my car, not caring if any of my neighbors saw. I screenshot the email and sent it to Nadia with the following message: Pack your bags, beeyotch! We’re heading to Florida!

Seeing that email made my day. While I loved my job, I had a large workload and taking a few days off to head to the beach with one of my BFFs sounded amazing! Especially with late fall/early winter temps by the Great Lakes. Ponies on the Beach was an event being put on for fellow horsepeople like me and Nadia. Only 200 people were allowed to attend, so getting picked was a really big deal. I figured Florida must be my lucky state, since the last time I was picked for one of these was ten years ago in Orlando. My mom went with me that time, along with a hobby friend who has since passed away. My aunt and cousins drove a couple of hours to come have lunch with us on Sunday before we left. It’s a great memory.

I pulled up Google Maps on my computer to see where Palm Beach fell relative to where my aunt and cousins lived, and was sad to see it was too far for them to come visit. I grinned when I realized how close to Miami it was. Carlos would have suggestions as to places to visit, and maybe even want to come up for the afternoon before we left on Sunday and show us some sights himself. I’d missed the opportunity to meet him several years ago when I went to Long Island to visit some friends. I met up with Defiance, Lisa, and Comicfan for dinner, but Carlos wasn’t scheduled to arrive in NYC until the following day. Unfortunately, that was the day of the event I was on the Island for, and we were leaving right afterwards. So bad timing. Maybe this year would be different.

****

There was no mistaking the roar of the Harley or the identity of the gray-haired rider as he rolled to a stop in front of the hotel. He dismounted and approached, grinning. “Valkyrie?”

“Yup. You can call me Val,” I replied and opened my arms for a hug. He almost crushed me for a few seconds as we embraced, then parted. “This is Nadia, Patti, and Margot.” I pointed to each of my friends in turn.

He shook their hands. “Nice to meet you. So, anyone up for seafood? I know this great place right on the beach. You can’t come to Florida without stopping for some fresh seafood. They also have some great Cuban dishes.” He winked. “Besides, it’s right on the way for us to get that selfie we talked about.”

I laughed. “Perfect!”

I had the privilege of riding behind Carlos on the Harley, while my friends followed in their rental car. I asked him if it would ruin his reputation to have a woman behind him on the bike. He snort/laughed and stated, “Aw, hell no!” The fresh sea air felt great as we roared down the road. After about ten minutes, he slowed down and put his left indicator on. We pulled over to a wide shoulder/look-out point. Across from the waterfront was a large, gated compound – Mar a Lago. We took turns taking selfies and pictures with our phones as we flipped off the building in the distance.

We had about an hour wait before being seated upstairs in the beachfront restaurant. It was screened in, so the fresh ocean air mingled with the smell of Floridian and Cuban dishes. The view, company, and food was spectacular. I don’t remember everything we all ate, or even all of the conversation, but mingling with old and new friends in an atmosphere I rarely get to see is a memory I will cherish forever.

Carlos left after we stopped for ice cream at a place with only a couple of locations. The other one happened to be in Saratoga Springs, NY, and was a place I had frequented more than once. Carlos was as funny, nice, sarcastic, and direct as I expected him to be. The time flew by, and I wouldn’t have traded it for anything.

****

This is how I wish things had worked out. The trip to Florida was real; however, the meeting with Carlos is pure fantasy. I did message him about the trip, but unfortunately our schedules did not align for us to meet. We joked about visiting Mar a Lago and taking that selfie, which I actually did with my friends. I truly did think that we would meet someday, and am sad that both opportunities didn’t work out. Ride on, my friend! Whenever I see chrome glinting in the sunlight, I will think of you.

Copyright © 2023 Valkyrie; All Rights Reserved.
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
Note: While authors are asked to place warnings on their stories for some moderated content, everyone has different thresholds, and it is your responsibility as a reader to avoid stories or stop reading if something bothers you. 

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  • Site Administrator
1 minute ago, wenmale64 said:

An amazing tribute to an amazing man.  I wish I had a chance to know Carlos the man as well as the author. He will be missed.

Thank you!  Yes, me too.  He is definitely missed.  :( 

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  • Site Administrator
3 minutes ago, Slytherin said:

Perfect! :hug:

Thank you!  :hug: 

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