Old-Fashioned Love

cafe, latte, Starbucks, coffee, Pixabay, loveYou must be kidding. It’s really rather nauseating, Ben the barista decided, watching the man and woman hold hands as they walked toward the back of the café.

This exact same scenario had occurred every day over the past three weeks. What’s she see in him? Ben wondered.

The man appeared to be a shy scarecrow, similar to the character in that old movie Ben’s girlfriend, Liz, made him watch. What was it called? Oh yeah, Wizard of Oz. Liz called the movie a classic. He called it booorrriing. But Liz cuddled with him on Ben’s soft brown couch as they watched the old (old) movie, so who was he to complain?

elderly love, mature love, Wizard of Oz, Ray Bolger, Scarecrow

Ray Bolger, 1939.

As the couple approached a table, the scarecrow man pulled out a chair for the woman, like guys used to do in old movies. She sat, primly, knees together. Ben’s co-worker brought the order to the table, and the woman sipped her hot chocolate as if it was bourbon on ice.

Ben shook his head. Oh no, did that really just happen? The scarecrow placed his hand on the table, and the lady placed her hand on top of his. Yuck! Who did they think they were? Teenagers?

Ben went back to his work, filling orders for three cappuccinos, two coffees, a Masala chai, a caffe mocha, and two Frappuccinos. But then he looked up at just the wrong time.

WHAT! He was so disgusted that he wondered if he should kick the couple out. But these days, with everything so P.C., he’d probably get in trouble. But what would the customers think? Ben swiveled his head from side to side. No one else seemed to notice, but how could anyone not see this. . . . this . . . abomination?

kiss, kissing, old love, love, public display of affectionThe kiss lasted a long time, at least Ben thought so. But the lady leaned back in her chair afterwards with a crooked smile. The man leaned toward her and placed his hand on her face, which had more wrinkles than Ben could count. Both of them had to be at least 70. They were as old as his grandparents, for cripe’s sake.

Ben returned to the iced white chocolate mocha he was making. What was this world coming to, he wondered. Old people, in love.

He whipped out his phone quickly, hoping his boss didn’t see him.  “Hey Liz, any other old movie you want to watch tonight?” he texted.

117 thoughts on “Old-Fashioned Love

  1. You got that scene right out of reality! Recently had dinner out with my 96 year old two day a week golf playing friend. Since I’m only 83, we must look quite the couple out on a date in public. COVID took dating off the to do list until last week when restaurants opened. I felt like a relic when a middle aged woman came up to us and said: you guys are so cute, and wow, look, he even is wearing a jacket to dinner.

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    • What a WONDERFUL scene, Jeanette. You should have shocked the “younger set” some more and planted a big kiss on your friend. I dislike it when younger people say to those more mature: “don’t you look cute” as if being elderly turns you into children or something unable to show and express true love (and friendship). Sigh. Here’s to swiping away the patronizing looks and showing what true affection and intimacy look like. 🙂 ❤

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  2. It’s so sad when elderly people have lost the love of their life and spend the rest of their years alone, so reading about older people being in love is really sweet. Love only becomes more precious as we age. I think a lot of young people mistake lust for love and it takes a long time for them to figure out the difference.

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    • Sue, I think those of us over 50 and up should be more open about showing affectionate, intimate love. In other words, let’s show a bit of PDA (public displays of affection) and show how LOVE makes the world go round (in the most wonderful ways…)

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    • Youngsters fail to appreciate people/couples who are older than they are by decades. And perhaps it’s time for those of us who have “been around the block” a time or two to show some of our true love moves. 🙂

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  3. I remember hearing people say when I was growing up, “What’s she see in him?” I’m glad Mom didn’t say that about my husband, then boyfriend.

    As to your story, it’s all about how the couple make each other feel, I believe. Looks & age probably have very little to do with it. My walking partner, now in her eighties, admits to intimacy with a man her age. (Insert giggle)

    Well, now. . .
    A noble nod to such a timely story, Pam!

    Liked by 1 person

    • This is what I love about walking with a friend – no matter the age. We share such intimate details, feeling safe as our feet hit the pavement or trail. 🙂 Good for your friend. Funny how young people think that sex ends at middle age. HA. What little they know. Here’s to intimacy and mature love – nothing to do with looks, everything to do with the “inside” of each. ❤

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  4. Yeah, Pam, we like doing things like that in front of our young granddaughters just to gross them out. One day, long after we’re gone, they’ll reflect back on their time with us and realize the treasure that was ours.

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    • Ohhh, I can just see you two canoodling in front of your grandkiddies, letting them squirm. Good for you! And yes, at some point in their life your lesson of how love ages, like fine wine, will return to them and they’ll smile and nod. ❤

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  5. Such a sweet story ~ of course love is good at any age. We were sure you were about to mention that she was the “foam to the cappuccino of their lives together”… Hahaha.

    Wven in our sixties when we go to yoga together now that I have silver hair like Ben, we often get the “aw aren’t you guys so cute?” 🙂

    Really like the way you highlighted the shock and awe that older people might have displays of public affection! Good story!

    Peta & Ben

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    • Haha. I would have added the “borrowed” foam to my cappuccino comment but had to watch my word count (and worry about copyright protection?) 🙂 Would have been perfect here though, for sure. Don’t you dislike the rather patronizing “you guys are so cute?” comments, as if deep love is only for the young. Sigh. I hope you give each other a big kisseroo at the end of Shavasana!

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  6. Perfect timing with the age reveals, Pam! One of my favorite lines was, “the woman sipped the hot chocolate as if it was bourbon on ice.” If I saw any couple doing this, regardless of age, I’d think it was sweet. That’s a lot more romantic than two young people engrossed in their phones, having conversations with people who aren’t in front of them.

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    • Perfect comment, Pete. My guy and I just returned from a long walk all around Boston this morning (gorgeous spring day) and we watched the young couples sitting on park benches, each strolling through their phones, not touching or talking to each other. What a waste! Here’s to PDA for those of us who know how to pay attention to each other – in love. ❤

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  7. Beautiful writing (as always)!
    Last year, our son’s girlfriend casually mentioned that she had been curious so Googled if people could still have sex when they were REALLY OLD — like 70, she said by way of example. True story – and she wasn’t a kidder! 😦

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    • OH. My. Goodness Gracious. I guess you had to laugh at your son’s girlfriend’s comment? Not act shocked or dismayed? I’d have been tempted to grab my guy and give him a looooonnnnnnnnnnggggg smooch right in front of the “young people.” Haha. Perhaps that’s your plan soon, huh? GO FOR IT! 🙂 ❤

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    • Ohhh, Marlene. Yes, how I’d like to know the history behind this older couple, smooching in the back of the café. Is their love old, or new? Does it matter? Love is love is love. And those mature lovers are not only lucky, I think they know it. ❤

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    • If Ben doesn’t learn quickly, he’s not gonna have a romantic life, that’s for sure! 😆 Probably one of the worst phrases that humans use about themselves is, “well at my age I can’t…” Ohhh yes you can! 😍👍💕

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  8. Yeah! Pam, I’m loving how your story champions the rights of those in love in older years! I can’t help smiling as Ben is squirming at the signs of affection between the couple. Your description of the guy and their gentle touching of hands, long kiss and his hands on her face is so touching and endearing. Beautifully and tenderly portrayed! The story has a terrific ending and I reckon Ben will need to watch a LOT of old films and live a lot more before he fully appreciates love. Hope his girlfriend is patient!

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    • Ben’s girlfriend, I’m afraid, is going to have to be VERY patient, ’cause I have a feeling he’s a slow learner. But, maybe love with Liz will help him grow up in a hurry, and realize that there is no A (age) in L O V E. ❤

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  9. Beautifully done, Pam. Love the ending. No one is every too old for love or express their love to each other. I like how you subtly teased out the different ways we can show love – out in public without a care in the world, or more privately behind closed doors such as on the coach. A bit of love always, always makes us feel better 😊

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    • Thanks so much for your comment, Mabel. Always fabulous to have you here. And yes, NEVER too old for kisses and love. Most of us are probably private about love-kisses, but after realizing how Ben (and other ones like him) think about “old love,” I’d suggest those over 50 start doing some more PDA (public display of affection). 🙂

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  10. The young will always find older people in love embarrassing, but Ben will be lucky to find such love in his own life! I was just thinking reading this that I rarely see couples kissing in public these days (I’m talking before the days of Coronavirus!)

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