Standing in the lavatory of the Boeing 737-800 bound for Toronto, the funky perfumed water smell barely registered. What did cause a severe impact to my psyche was the extreme lighting in said loo. Dear gawd! After washing my hands I'd looked up and was literally entranced by my wrinkles. I stood staring into the mirror and counted the creases in my forehead. I needed to get out of there. Back in my seat a quick call button to the flight attendant and I was holding a chardonnay. Three times over.
I breezed through Canadian Customs and headed toward the blue bus that would take me to Terminal 1 of Toronto's Pearson International Airport. I was hustling to make my third flight of the day for my conversion in Prince Edward Island and my last trip to this client site from the island. Sitting next to a woman humming and rocking her head, I balanced my backpack and roller bag and thought about the past few days in St. Maarten.
Would I miss the island? Sure. The crystalline water and white sandy beaches were beyond measure. I'd also made some friends I would genuinely be sad not to see on a regular basis. Would I miss the traffic? Negative, Ghostrider. The unexpected flair like receiving free condoms, complete with diagram, while filling up at the local petrol station? <Crickets>
My sister-in-law, Ashley, was staying with us on the island until the end of June when we'd leave, sans Jameson, to head State side. Out on an epic errand run, we'd stopped at the gas station just before Sandy Ground. I paid and tipped the attendant while Ash and I waited in the car venting about island traffic and how a simple grocery run was going to take 2 hours instead of 15 minutes.
"Fill it up," said the attendant. I leaned out the window smiling and thanked him.
"I have something I want to give," he continued, "but I'm not sure you'll like." He grinned. Really big.
I paused, looked at Ash, and looked back at the attendant. "A high five?" I asked.
He laughed, told me no, then turned around. I looked back at Ash, worried.
"Here," he said while pushing a basket full of blue squares at me, "take one and fill it up." He laughed. Okaaaayyyy... weirdness.
"I'm going to take two, okay? One for each of us," I told the attendant and grabbed a couple of the blue squares emblazoned with a gold gas pump and the words 'Fill It Up'. I turned and handed one to Ash.
Before I had a chance to open the packet she said, "Oh. My. Word." I looked over and I saw a condom inside the package that she'd opened. And just in case we weren't sure what the condom was for, there was a handy dandy diagram on the inside of the packet.