What a Trip Ch. 01byVacationWriter©
I hadn't seen Aunt Linda in close to 10 years. Looking back that seems such a short time, actually, but it was a world of difference to me. I mean, a decade one way or the other isn't much when you're over 30, but at 18 it's a lifetime. It's a world of difference in emotional and biological shifts. So, while I always had a soft spot for Linda, she was just meeting the 'adult' me. She hadn't changed a jot in my mind, but I was a world of growth spurts gone.
I'd come to her place as a bit of a graduation present. She'd always looked out for me and after high school graduation she wanted to show me around my new stomping grounds. The college I had gotten into was a short 20 minute drive from my Aunt's place. Honestly, I'd lost touch with where she was living years ago. She tended to move around and was certainly the family wanderer. But when she asked where I was headed after graduation on a recent phone call, we were all pleasantly surprised to find that she was in the neighborhood.
Mom agreed that I should take a week off of my summer job to visit with Linda and learn the lay of the land before moving into my town. I'd be living on campus, but I would definitely need a part time job while going to school, so this seemed like a good time to make my way on a trial run.
Linda met me at the airport. I spotted her right away. She hadn't changed a jot. Not in 10 years. What a lovely lady. She was just the other side of 40, but the right side of gorgeous. She was barely 5 feet tall, but curvy in the way of my mother's side of the family. She was a bit on the busty side, though certainly nothing cinematic, pixie-ish dark hair, a bit too much makeup for my taste (though perhaps not for everyone) and a lovely set of hips that got my attention right away in jeans that were, perhaps, painted on. Wow. What a lovely sight. And yet, she didn't even look at me twice.
"Aunt Linda?" I asked as a form of introduction.
Slightly taken aback she blurted, "Bobby? No way. Little Bobby?"
"Well, it has been 10 years Aunt Ell."
"Huh... well, then you are way overdue for a welcome to town hug. C'mere, not-so-kiddo." And she crushed me in a bear hug far disproportionate to her size. I mean, I'm no goliath at 5'11", but I must admit that I was aware of how she fit against me. Her hug was a long way from the careful, polite arm-wrapping of the ladies at Mom's Bunko night. Linda was affectionate, demonstrative, and smelled ... great. I felt welcome, comfortable, and then just a bit awkward. A bit too close. This hug went a little longer than I could justify, before we began the customary backslapping end to an overlong soon to be awkward hug.
"Honey, you are ... well, you are something. I knew you were grown... well, I mean, I knew it on the calendar, but for me you're still that kid who did cannonballs into my pool for 3 hours straight."
"Well, I definitely learned my lesson then, Aunt Ell. I mean, wow. The only thing worse than the bruises from that day was the sunburn. I reeked of Old Spice cologne -- Dad's special trick for taking out the sting of a sunburn and, I'd guess, for driving off any hope of dating for a decade- and couldn't walk normally for a week. It made an impression."
"Sounds like. But, mostly I just remember the joy. You were running, screaming, diving -- and I use that term loosely, dear- and having the time of your life. I always loved that memory."
"Well, that's nice to hear. I've always had a soft spot for you, too."
"Well, let's see about that," she said with what might have been a smirk.
"Oh, nothing... Let's just see about getting you home. I think you'll like the new place. We'll get you set up, rested, fed, and plan out your vacation. It'll be a blast. I took off time from work, for at least a couple of days, and so you'll get my undivided."
"Sounds great, Aunt Linda. I could definitely use that snack. Airplane peanuts were just not getting it for me."
The ride home was chatty and warm. Aunt Linda was instantly comfortable with me, a virtual stranger, in a way that made me comfortable with her. And, honestly, it's rare that a beautiful woman is that talkative with me. I'm not a hermit, certainly. But, it's also true that I'm no ladies' man. The teen years are not kind to men as they develop social skills. But with Linda everything was easy. She had read books that I had just discovered, seen bands in concert that I'd only ever heard on Pandora, and gone places I had only dreamed of. I'm close to my Mom, but her older sister was fascinating. While Mom was raising my sister and I, heading to PTO meetings, and packing school lunches, Aunt Ell was backpacking through Italy. What a different life.
We arrived at my aunt's place in short order. It was a nice middle class ranch on a quiet street. Lots of trees and landscaping surrounded the house and she pulled her Toyota into the two-car garage.
Piling out, I shouldered my bags and headed into the kitchen behind my aunt. She dropped her keys on the counter and turned to grab one of my bags, "Here, kiddo, hand it over and I'll show you your room."
Sloughing off my backpack I hobbled along behind her under a bit less weight. As we went from kitchen to dining room, we passed a glass patio door that looked out on a beautiful backyard deck and pool.
"I didn't know you had a pool, Aunt Ell."
"You didn't?" she said rather archly, I thought.
"No, but it's lovely. I guess the California climate makes it easy to find a pool in a lot of backyards."
"It's practically a state law, Bob. Feel free to cannonball in when you've unpacked."
"Well, I didn't exactly bring a suit, Aunt Ell," I chuckled. "Didn't plan ahead, I suppose."
"Don't let that stop you, bud. You're on vacation," She smirked teasingly.
"Uh" I blushed in a way that was unmistakable and mortifying. Did my aunt just suggest that I...
"I mean, of course, that you can pick up a suit any ole time you like while you're here." Her soft laugh was intoxicating. And a breath of relief rushed out of me. I didn't quite know where all that tension had come from, but, of course, Linda was just being gracious. What a perv I am.
She turned on one heel and sauntered through the dining room swinging my backpack onto one shoulder, "... though, I hardly ever wear one myself."
I picked up the bag I'd dropped along with my jaw. Californians sure are different.
"In here, dude."
I followed Aunt Linda into a modest, though comfortable bedroom. She'd tossed my pack down on the full sized bed and was opening the curtains to a window facing out into the yard.
"The view isn't much, but everything is pretty green this time of year so at least there is that."
As she turned around, Linda was framed in lovely summer sun with a background of bright green shrubbery. The house wasn't totally isolated, but the hedges and plantings gave the whole place a sort of Secret Garden feel.
I dropped my bags and breathed in a deep breath. Strangely, I just felt right. Comfortable. Content.
Aunt Linda brushed past me -- what is that scent... well, besides intoxicating- and stepped through the door behind me.
"So, the house is yours. No formal guest bullshit, okay? Bathroom is here on your left and I'm down at the end of the hall." She pointed toward the open door at the end of the hall and I could just make out the rich red comforter on a wood framed bed.
"We came through the kitchen with what passes for a dining room around here. The TV is in the living room over there, and that's about it. You saw the pool so feel free to hop in whenever you like."
"Once I've gotten a suit, of course." I teased eversoslightly.
"Whatever." With a grin, she spun around and marched down the hall to her bedroom.
What a mind, I must have. Was that teasing? Was she seriously suggesting that I go skinny dipping? Or that she was skinny dipping? Hey, whatever. She's a grown up. It's her place. She can swim any old way she wants. Hell, I would if it were me. She's just a lot more comfortable with herself, than I am. And besides, to her I'm just her sister's kid. So, the last thing on her mind was that her nephew would be hormone addled enough to take her innocent comments as ... well, as not exactly innocent.
I started unpacking my bags for the week. I don't generally empty out the suitcase for less than a week, but I had some clothes that I wanted to hang up. I slid open the closet doors and found some spare hangers. Hanging up a pair of pants and a couple of shirts I saw that the floor of the closet was filled with paperback books. Most were well-worn, and all were clearly reading rather than display copies. Potboilers, bodice rippers, and the like.
I admit, I'm nosy. I know, it wasn't really my business but I thought it might be nice to have a book to read by the pool. So, I squatted down and started thumbing through the titles. Nothing surprising really. Best sellers and legal thrillers. A few horror novels. And, huh... that's interesting... even some classic scifi paperbacks from the late sixties. How interesting. I pulled out a stack to get a look at the few behind the front stack, and was surprised to find that the books stacked against the back wall were of a different type. A very different type. There were probably 30 small novels with similar spines and identical typeface for the titles. And the top ones featured scantily clad and naked women. Smut... wow. Aunt Linda has a collection of old dirty novels. I had only seen a few of these before. My buddy Rick found some in his dad's dresser back when we were just tweens. We poured over those books in a way that made us equally aroused and uncomfortable. I guess even with the net, Aunt Linda had a fond rememberance for porn of a bygone time. Blushing I put the novels back as I'd found them. I knew I was beet red, but thank goodness I was alone. Subconsciously, I glanced toward Linda's bedroom hoping that she hadn't seen me snooping. And fell on my ass.
At the end of the hallway, I saw Linda facing away from me towards her bed. She had kicked off her shoes. In those too tight jeans, she was just pulling her top over her head and tossing it onto the bed.
My heart skipped a beat.
Reaching behind her back, Linda unhooked the black lace band of her bra and let it swing loose from her shoulders. I was frozen, and fascinated. She leaned forward and let her black lace bra drop from her chest to the bed ... With a slight sway I could make out just the smallest hint of the side of her breast. Her gorgeous back was slightly marred by the indentations of a recently removed foundation. My breathing seemed to have stopped, but I couldn't move.
Linda slipped something over her ducked head, and then I saw that she was putting on a bikini top. She turned to her left and I panicked. She was going to see me. See me being a total creep. Damn it. I really had to move. But if I moved she would see me. But I can't just sit here. Then Linda walked further into her bedroom reaching back and tying her top behind her as she disappeared from view.
I rolled out of the view of the doorway, and felt my heart triphammering in my chest. Calm down, Bob. Calm down. What did you see, really? I mean, just a bathing suit. That's all. A bathing suit. But, just for a second... just for a second... topless. The curve of the breast. The smooth expanse of a naked back. The length of neck to shoulder to hip... uncovered and warm.
My breathing was coming back under control but I couldn't stop running the image through my head. The books. The back. The bra. The breast. The b's were going to cause me trouble this trip, I could tell.
Close your eyes and think of calculus, Bob. You are proving that you're just a ridiculous kid. Be an adult. Bodies are just bodies. You'll be sharing this place with Linda for a week. Don't make a proposition out of a maternal comfort with you. And that stiffness in my jeans... well, that's just being stupid and 18. Nothing happened here. Nothing will happen here. Aunt Linda is just going for a swim. Simple as that.
Something dropped onto my head. I opened my eyes and couldn't see a thing. Reaching up I removed a pair of bright red nylon swimming trunks.
"I remembered that Jim left a suit here the last time he stayed over. He was a little guy, so those might not fit very well, but try 'em out."
I turned and saw Linda standing in the doorway wearing the rest of that bikini. A blue string bikini top, as I'd seen, and a white pair of bottoms that seemed to ride up on her hip fairly high. She wasn't tall so, of course, she didn't have super long legs, but they were delightfully strong with hips that made the cut of this bikini really work for her.
"'Course Jim didn't come back and that's been a few months so let's just call it the spoils of a breakup. I think you'll look better in it anyway. You'll certainly be a better conversationalist."
I nodded dumbly.
"Eventually," she smirked.
"See you in the pool, Bob. Don't make me swim alone." She turned around and hips swinging walked toward the glass patio doors. The bikini bottoms were, of course, a thong.
I love California, Aunt Linda, and this trip.
That, or I really hate California, Aunt Linda, and this trip.
Either way, I'm sure I left my jaw around here somewhere. Maybe it rolled under the bed.