Two big openings....
"A brother shares childhood memories and grown-up dreams".......Author Unknown
Two very large events are occurring between Mombasa and the Masai Mara.
Lewis Lyon completed his sprawling mall in the Mara and Wally Warthog is
having the grand opening of his Wally’s Beach Pub in Mombasa.
Invitations are in the mail for both events. President Ralph Lyon and
First Lioness, Mildred are to attend the grand opening of the mall and
cut the ribbon. Lewis is Ralph’s son. The two are to be on different
dates so there won’t be a conflict.
Shane Simba stood in his brother, Sefu's chambers. He had a great deal on his mind. He stood for so long in deep thought that Sefu was perplexed.
"What’s on your mind, Bro? The cases went well today. I hope you aren’t worried about them," said Sefu.
"Sef, what do you think Mom would do if one of her sons ever brought a human home?" asked Shane.
"Oh come on, Sef, Sam brought Betty Chimpo who looks more human than not and is basically a cosmetically enhanced ape."
"Betty is not human though. That makes the difference. Why do you think I didn’t bring my English girlfriend home? I knew Mom would stroke out."
"We’re both married to cheetahs; Chris married a leopardess first, so what’s the big damn deal?" roared Shane.
"Humans, Shane. They made a practice of killing our kind for generations. We are at peace with them now but, Bro, there’s something called memory."
"I don’t get it," muttered Shane.
"Bro, you are not in a position to fall in love with your lady friend. For starters, you’ve got a crazy, pregnant wife and unborn litter you need to address. You are letting yourself in for a pack of trouble if you go falling for this chick."
"I’ve already done that, Sef."
"I am sorry to hear this, Shane. I will be behind you one hundred percent but you are still heading for a bad fall, Bro."
"You are just speaking from the vantage point of an exceptionally good marriage, Sef."
"Excuse me, Shane, but I think you probably knew a great deal about Catherine before you made the mistake of marrying her. She busted your windshield and perpetrated several other horrors on you before you said the ‘I do’s’. You didn’t have to marry her. You could have kept your lust at bay for awhile and thought on the matter."
"Yeah, I know."
Shane went to the Watering Hole Pub after work and found his litter mate, Sam. He was there drinking his usual Scotch neat.
"I’ve got to get my act together," said Sam, ordering another drink.
"What are you riled about?" asked Shane, throwing down money for his own.
"Betty, after marrying me and having my cub, doesn’t want to go back with me. I’m a bit torn up. I love that little son of mine."
"You think you’ve got troubles? I am married to a pregnant and very lunatic cheetah who is in the nut house for an indefinite period. Now I am in love with a human female I met in Mombasa."
"You’re right. You do have a bigger load. Want to go home to the river with me and we can spend the evening pouring out our troubles to each other. After all, what are litter mates for?" laughed Sam.
He and Shane left for Sam’s home on the Mara River and an evening of brotherly bonding.
Betty walked to my house for a sundowner. She had tiny Joshua in a sling. Bertram Baboon was there and we sat drinking and enjoying the sunset. I had gone for two sessions with Lachlan and he was helping me work past the sadness that this house produced without the presence of Lawrence. He had suggested having many friends in and creating an alternate memory bank.
"You seem to have led a rather solitary existence with Lawrence. I gather from your past with Bertram, you were at one time a more social animal. You seem to have enjoyed being one," Lachlan had said.
I sat back and enjoyed the sunset with my two dearest friends from the past. Bertram had never found anyone after me and Betty seems unable to manage a lasting relationship, although she seems on the road to one with her new baby.
In the next two days, Gerald Giraffe asked me to his barn for dinner and drinks. He had noticed Lawrence was part of Montecore's life again. He was quite fretful of that fact but after a few drinks, we sat and gabbed about old friendships and good times. I also went to Sylvia and Bernard Cougar’s for dinner. My dearest friends were not going to allow me to mope. What surprised them was that this time I had sought help. I also had the air of one who was finished with a relationship and didn’t expect more from it. I went to my mail box one afternoon after work to find a check from Lawrence. It had a short note enclosed saying that he wanted to lend me some monetary support since we were legally wed. I tore the check in two pieces and wrote him a note telling him that I had a very good job, art career and that I loved him......not his money. I enclosed the torn check with the note. I thanked him for the thought and mailed it.
The opening of the Lyon Mall was a major event. I went with Bertram Baboon. It was milling with animals and people going to the shops that had already opened and gotten an early start on sales. Christine Cheetah’s Gucci boutique was one of them. Bertram and I were welcomed by Christine, Cynthia and Dorian. There were marvelous canapes and Champagne for refreshments. Betty was there with tiny Joshua in a sling. She had just purchased a very spiffy new type of carrier for Joshua. There is a new restaurant in the Mall. It is owned by Farah Fennec’s father, Fred. It has delicious food and drink and goes by the simple name of Fennec’s Fresh Foods. Bertram, Betty and I grabbed a bite there. The premiere shop is Gina Genet Lyon’s Chanel Boutique. Gina is Lewis’s wife and the mother of a new cub, herself. I asked the prosperous couple if they intended to build something fancy in the bush. Their reply was ‘no way would they leave the nurturing ambience of the Lyon Pride Compound’. We saw Ashley and Leah Lyon, as well as Dodi Dik Dik Lyon who will be opening a boutique of her own soon. It was a fun evening and Bertram and I ended up at Betty’s home for a night cap.
Three evenings later, on a Saturday night in Mombassa, Wally Warthog’s Beach Pub opened its doors for the first time. Betty invited Bertram and me to join her at her beach home there. We did. She had tiny Joshua with her but had fortunately hired a sitter for the night so that we could attend the shindig at Wally’s. She added Sam Simba to the party later. They seemed very compatible as we walked our way down the beach to the celebratory gathering. Lights were strung about and the evening had already taken off when we arrived. The place was jam packed. The evening had shed very benevolent weather over the occasion. The sun was dipping low over the ocean when we arrived. It seemed that every animal that owned or leased a home in Mombasa, graced the party. We edged our way into the crowd. It was a frenetic bunch, proffering glasses to be filled at the bar. We saw Ashley, Leah and Anissa Lyon but didn’t get a chance to speak with them. Sam Simba got to the bar first and filled our drink orders. He handed them merrily back to us. We stood there drinking happily, Sam and Betty blowing cigarette smoke about. Sam spotted his brother, Shane in the crowd.
"Oh my god, he’s here with her," he said, probably without thinking.
We all looked and saw Shane Samba with a gorgeous human female in tow. You would have never known they were in a crowded room, so absorbed were they in each other.
"Shane’s got a human with him," piped Betty.
Lachlan Lion came to the bar and greeted me with warmth. He included Betty, a former patient and Sam in his pleasantness. He already knew Bertram from Montecore's disco and shook his hand.
"I couldn’t pass up this occasion although I detest his place in the Mara," laughed Lachlan. "Maybe this one will be less the meat market and more the eating and drinking establishment."
"Where are you staying?" asked Sam.
"I have to confess that I bought a small hovel on the beach. Nothing to brag about, mind you. Something that might be tolerated by a beach bum," he grinned.
He eventually went his way, giving me a big hug. Bertram raised his eyebrows.
"The jury is still out on his sexual preferences," whispered Bertram.
Later we saw him with Anissa Lyon. Sam tried to find Shane again but failed. It was a very fun filled evening....many friends and much excitement. Later, we walked back to Betty’s. Bertram, Betty, Sam and I had night caps while Betty happily nursed Joshua. We noticed that Sam accompanied Betty to her bedroom with Joshua. The door clicked behind them.
Betty, Sam, me and Bertram at Wally's Beach Pub opening in Mombasa....
Shane Simba had made his first public appearance with Johanna. Heads had swirled as the married district attorney appeared with the beautiful human. After they left Wally’s Beach Pub, they returned to Johanna’s house in the old section. She had a state of the art sound system in the old house. They drank cognac and danced to mellow ballads in French. She was a fan of Edith Piaf and Charles Asnavour. Shane took home copies on CD’s to play during the week and keep the memory of Johanna ever close. Shane’s routine was set for the time being. He would work diligently during the week, kicking ass in court as the Mara’s prosecutor. He would visit Catherine on Friday afternoon and then head for Mombasa and the solace of Johanna. He would keep his cell phone hot on week nights talking with her. He pushed the problems of being so deeply in love with Johanna to the edge of his consciousness. For the moment, he would keep it at bay to be taken out only when necessary. Meanwhile, he satiated himself in her love and beautiful body. He was content in the moment. He knew it was a mirage that could disappear at any thrust of fate.
Shane and Johanna at Wally's Beach Pub opening.....