Bryan likes to surprise me, so I had no idea where we were going when he picked me up in his Aston Martin on Sunday afternoon.
He was wearing a lavender pinstripe dress shirt, and I was still in my knee-length church dress, so I had visions of a 1950s soda shoppe experience when we pulled into the parking lot of an ice cream parlour. But Bryan told me that we were getting our ice cream to go, so we selected our flavors and got back into the car.
Bryan held both cones while I climbed in and fastened my seat belt. “Where are we headed?” I asked, eyeing my chocolate peppermint ice cream as he handed both cones back to me so that he could drive.
“I thought we’d go to a nearby park. Walk. Talk. Eat ice cream.” He turned to look at me and grinned from the driver’s seat.
I smiled back; then looked down as his sweet-cream-with-raspberries ice cream started to trickle its way down my right hand. I hesitated; then asked, “How do you feel about me licking your ice cream to keep it from dripping on your leather seats?”
He shrugged. “That’s okay by me. The park’s pretty close, so we should be there in just a few minutes.”
But we didn’t have a few minutes. At first, I made sure the ice cream dripped onto my bare legs rather than his leather seats. I was glad I was in a short dress (skin is easier to clean than fabric). But there was no helping it. Eventually ice cream started running down the sides of my legs onto his Aston Martin seats.
I apologized. He apologized. I felt badly about getting sticky ice cream on his fancy seats; he felt badly about getting sticky ice cream all over my bare legs. But after a minute or two, I stopped apologizing and started giggling as my James Bond hurtled his way down back roads, trying to get us to the park before there was no more ice cream left in either cone.
And as I started giggling, he started chuckling. Soon we were both laughing uproariously as ice cream melted all over the place. When we got to the park, Bryan grabbed a gym towel from the trunk, opened the door for me, and took both sticky, melting cones so I could escape the runny mess and towel off.
We stood together beside Bryan’s car – his Aston Martin – laughing as we leaned over the grass and tried to eat what remained of our ice cream without letting the droplets land on our feet. I’m sure we looked like a couple of school kids as we dipped our various appendages into a park fountain to wash off, and continued on the rest of our walk, sticky but happy.