Spontoon Island
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Posted 18 January 2011
"Happy New Year!"
By Lila Firefly

(Spontoon Islands: 1937-1938)

“Happy New Year!”

by Lila Firefly

As she started down the gangplank, a soft tropical breeze caught her skirt and lifted it just enough to look flirtatious. She didn’t mind that at all, everything was perfect because she was in love .The slender collie stepped confidently, even though she was wearing those skinny high heels that left other furs teetering precariously. Near the bottom, she paused ever so slightly and turned her head to the left just enough to speak to her companion, a tall, handsome German shepherd.

“If we can’t be at Don’s place for New Year’s Eve,” she said, smiling playfully, “Casino Island is perfect.”

He grinned broadly, “Of course it is, the perfect ending for this magical year, my dear.”

Suddenly the year’s passing filled him with the tiniest bit of sadness. Not for the Mainland, really. Maybe it was just so many changes, everything happening so fast. Then he shook it off and realized that from here on, it would only get better.

Their chance meeting at Don’s Beachcomber Café in Hollywood had been the start of it all. Now they were finishing their honeymoon cruise, disembarking on New Year’s Eve at Casino Island. Don had told them he explored several of the Spontoon Islands in his youth, and they thought he must have left his mark, or maybe even be known somewhere in the Archipelago. And now surely he was on his way to fame and fortune on the Mainland. He was a great host, made cute little pineapple and rum drinks that they couldn’t resist; his place everyone’s dream of the South Seas. And it rekindled dreams they had almost forgotten they had.

Soon they had quit their jobs in Hollywood, minor clerical and management positions, nothing exciting. After all, they were both finished with the whole growing-up-and-leaving-home thing. They realized that jobs might not be that different anywhere they were; they would rather be in a tropical island paradise.

They left the ship and walked up the street until they found a nightclub where the music floated out on the night air and enticed them in. Not just any music, it was jazz, the kind that made it impossible not to dance. They went in and sat down at a teensy round table. Ordered Mai Tais which arrived speedily with little umbrellas. The band began to play and suddenly they were transported back to Hollywood and their meeting at Don’s Beachcomber Café. She took a sip and looked at him slyly. He took a sip and started to laugh. Then they were both laughing and holding paws across the table. It was just too perfect. They both started to talk at the same time.

“Remember when you came in the door and almost tripped over a table? How everyone in the whole place turned and looked? I’m so glad I did.” She giggled and took another sip.

“Yeah, I couldn’t help noticing you looking, either. Maybe it’s all your fault that I tripped, I had already seen you at the bar in that backless dress and I couldn’t take my eyes off you.” He grinned, remembering. “I didn’t even notice that Ginger Rogers was also at the bar and Errol Flynn was at a table in the corner. None of that made no nevermind to me, doll. Eyes only for you.”

“I couldn’t believe you were so handsome, I had to turn around to compose myself.”

“Good thing there was a seat beside you, I got there as quick as I could,” he winked.

“I noticed, and you’re still here,” her eyes melted to pools of deepest chocolate.

Then, the band struck up one of their favorite songs, Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen”. And suddenly they were both up and moving to the music, doing the Shag. They couldn’t resist. They laughed and wiggled and kicked and went crazy with the beat. And after that it was “Deep Purple”. They swung right into the Flea Hop, her right arm, his left arm straight up, holding paws, touching all the way to elbows, looking at each other intently, as if they could not bear to look away. Their feet moved automatically.

After a while, the countdown was shouted out. And then it was 1938, the beginning of the rest of their new life together. They turned toward the door and walked out, down the street to the dock and caught the ferry to Main Island, home.