They celebrate their last night sans kids
on the deck.
It is a humidity-free night, a breeze whispers past their shoulders and through their hair, a full moon hangs low and pregnant in a clear sky. The heady, earthy scent of newly laid mulch is subtle and lovely.
Inexplicably, but also because it makes complete sense, chicken stock simmers on the stove, liquid amber redolent of leeks and celery and a happy bird. The bones leave each other, the skin slips, the broth is golden; never having boiled, it is not cloudy.
A pizza sizzles on the grill, another round of cocktails boogie with icy cubes in a silver shaker. They show their age by dancing madly, wildly, happily, freely to the Summer of '69 and You Shook Me All Night Long stations on Pandora.
Fat Bottomed Girls, Jessie's Girl, Nothing's Gonna Stop Us Now, Right Now, Dream On, Paradise City, Your Love, House of the Rising Sun scream from the speakers; anthems for two who came of age in the 80s, that time of awful hair, leg-warmers and great music.
Their cat watches with gimlet eyes. What does he think? He flicks his tail imperiously, knowing he is beloved.
They dance and twist and spin and breathe heavily; they are not in their twenties anymore. They are glad.
Their boys are coming home tomorrow, and they can't wait to wrap their arms around their tan little bodies but they will also miss this sort of time.
The Mamas and the Papas sing about the leaves turning brown and winter's days. The Stones paint it black, the cocktails are drunk, the stock starts to cool, tired bodies take to the couch, the cat joins, purring.