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Day 86: Protect Ya Tings.


The vacation has come to an end, my tan is golden, quality time has been spent and now it is time to head back up to New York.

In the cab, on the way to the airport, I saw the best billboard for safe sex. It read: "Protect Ya Tings! Use a Rubber Everytime!" which caught my grandfather's eye as he announced it as we passed. "Protect Ya Tings!" he declared with his thick Italian accent and hands waving above his head. "Ella, what does 'Protect Ya Tings' mean?" he asked as he strenuously turned around from the front seat. "Dolly, its obviously Bahamian slang that we're not yet accustomed to!" my grandmother impatiently intervened. Not having enough sleep after tossing and turning all night and it being 7 am, I didn't sugar coat it. "It means where a condom, Grandpa, wear a condom." I said dryly. There was a slight gasp before my grandparents realized who their audience was, me, their spinster granddaughter. "That's good advice! Goooooood advice." he said nodding in agreement with the public announcement. Indeed it is. 

Arriving at Nassau International Airport, going through customs and immigration was breeze, mostly because we arrived at the airport at quarter to eight for a 1:30 pm flight. My grandpa and I stopped at a Dunkin' Donuts in the terminal to get a cup of coffee to kill the five hours ahead of us. Standing in line, we planted ourselves in front of a mother holding her screaming child which was in direct ear shot of my grandfather. His good ear. We ordered two coffees which took about 15 minutes longer than necessary while the baby continued to scream at the top of his lungs. The mother was completely oblivious and looked on as if nothing was going on. "I hope she isn't on our flight" my grandfather tried to whisper in my ear but ended up announcing it to the entire Dunkin' Donuts clientele, including said oblivious mother. 

We got back to the gate with coffee for my grandmother to sip on and we recounted the lack of efficiency and screaming baby to her. Hey, we had nothing else to do. "I wanted to talk to you about that." my grandmother said with a mix of concern and disgust on her face. "Talk to me about what? My coffee intake?" I asked, ready to agree with the fact that I drink too much of it. "Well, you are getting up there in age and it will become more and more difficult to have children," she said as if she is filling me on the 8th mystery of the world. I don't even know if I want children. I'm just trying to get through this week without committing suicide and/or homicide. Upon telling her this, her throat tightened up and with pursed lips said "Well that is a personal choice every woman makes and it doesn't mean you are a freak." She then took a long exaggerated breath and flipped a page in her magazine, "How does this young gentleman, Aurélien feel about your movement against children?" The movement against children? I just never fantasized about having something the size of my skull pushing out of my 'itty-bitty' and then fighting with the man who had no problem in contributing over finances because let's face it; kids are expensive and I don't attract men with money...I never had, so financial burdens will certainly come with the package. But in regards to Aurélien, let me get passed the first month of dating and try not scare the guy too soon with his plans for children. 

We boarded the plane where I sat in between an overweight child and a father who refused to give his son the window seat because his son got it on the way down to The Bahamas. I offered to switch seats so he could be closer to his son who responded with "I've been with him all week, you can have him now." Having children sounds awesome. 

I nestled into my seat with my headphones watching the amazing Kathy Griffin show and sipping on a Bloody Mary when I heard in my right ear "Poppy!" and again.."Poppy!". Naturally, it was the miscreant sitting next to me. "Poppy!" he screamed louder and closer to my ear. "Poppppppppy!" I exhaled and turned to him where we were face to face. "Get my poppy!!" he demanded me while he slammed his hand down on the armrest. Ok, I will get your poppy, just please, shut up. I tapped Poppy who looked at me like I was insane for touching him and I gestured to his son where their communication sorted itself out without any further assistance from me. I ordered another vodka. 

Throughout the flight, there were several more requests for Poppy while he sprayed cookies and chips out of his mouth and on to my face as well as the objects that were being passed over me, between Poppy and child. 

We landed and I met up with my grandparents who looked just winded from the flight. It has been a long week for everyone. It's good to be back in New York and focusing on getting my things together before returning to France, which is looking like sooner than later. A relaxing month with the family has been anything but and felt more like the Salem Witch Trials but you can't change others, you can only change your perspective. Today is about focusing on your own happiness regardless if others think you are shrewd and a hopeless spinster; and if you're not ready for kids or diseases, 'Protect Ya Tings'.

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