We were up at 4:30. We were going to follow Jeanna to the airport for one last good bye. We fixed a light breakfast then drove to the airport after the pilot called to say he was 10 minutes out. We were waiting on the tarmac as the plane landed. In the morning sun the G5 was a beautiful bird landing. The pilot and copilot hurriedly stowed Jeanna’s baggage. They had a 10 minute window in their IFR flight plan to get back airborne or they would have to wait for over an hour because of the inbound morning flights to BWI, Philly and Reagan. A quick round of hugs and goodbyes and the plane was rolling as soon as the door closed.
The pilots took no pity on the engines or neighborhood. They sat on the end of the runway, held the brakes, revved the engines to the max and launched that bird. They didn’t even use half of the runway.
I went to Marcy and said, “She will be back before you know it” as I gave her a hug.
Being it was Monday Patti and I headed to the college. We both had important work to do. I was going to leave at 11 to be at the open house and Patti at 3. One of the day people was going to meet Jason in C-ville with her. This would be the last time that we had to shuffle drivers around for Patti. She and Jason were going to MVA to get her license. She was so excited that she had already picked out a little sports car she liked.
I had two meetings scheduled for the morning. One was the standard new building update which took about an hour now that things were working more smoothly. The second was with the athletic department. They wanted weekly updates on the progress on the security arrangements for all away sporting events. The last two part-time officers that we offered jobs to had accepted our offer over the Thanksgiving holidays. The security department could now put an armed person on each bus on away trips as well as an additional guard.
When the meetings were over Kate was waiting for me with Patti. Kate wanted an update on how Misty was doing and if the doctors thought she would be OK.
“They interviewed her for four hours, she seemed much better. She has only had one or two problems since they left. They want to see her again before she goes back to Frost Borough,” I said.
Kate replied, “You do know that you can sponsor her here at the college? She can finish out her studies here.”
“No, I did not know that. How does that work? “I asked. Then I added, “That would separate her and Belinda. I’m not sure that would be a good idea. They have been roommates at Frost Borough since the start of their college education.”
“You can only sponsor one student in a four year period or until they graduate or leave the college. The program was started so the coaches could bring an exceptional player from another college. Pressure from the other professors made it open to everyone. The student pays the same amount as they did at their original school, they have to stay in the dorms but they wave the dorm fees.” Kate said.
“I have not used my sponsorship so it is still available, I can use mine for Belinda and you can use yours for Misty. Time will be tight to get it done before classes start again in January,” she said.
“You know the open house for the tanning salon and gym is this afternoon and tonight. Why don’t you come and we can explain everything to them and see everything now that it is complete.” I said and added, “I’m leaving here at 11 to go help.”
“My man is out of town on another trip so I can do that and I would love to see the gym,” she said.
I left at 11 as planned. I arrived at the 1001 Summers Road at 11:45. I was going to park at the gym but that was impossible. There was no place to park. The north side parking area was double and triple parked all the way to the property line, completely full. Backed in to the corner beside the opened entrance gate was the mobile TV truck from NABCS Annapolis station. The reporters were on the front dock interviewing a group of people. Dad was out front acting as a parking attendant.
I parked over at the house then changed clothes before I walked over to the gym and was able to skirt around the reporter and get inside. The waiting room had a sign-in sheet for the tanning booth. It was one of those yellow legal pads – several pages had already been turned under. The available wall space was full of all kinds of special and combinations of services for the gym. Jamie was in the class room with two dozen or so ladies, she was describing what her training course would offer.
Marsha was at the window taking credit cards, cash and giving information. Kim and Wendy were working the tanning booth. Just as I was about to step into the gym Wendy came out of the tanning room in a pair of Daisy Dukes and a bikini top that left little to the imagination and called the next name off the list.
Mom was sitting at one of the tables with a stack of 5 x 6 note cards entering the information into a laptop. I assumed they were for the email club. The rest of the tables were filled with ladies waiting and snacking from the refreshment center. Mom 2 was working the center.
Jenny was over at the Marathoners with another group of ladies. Lorrie and Misty had a group at the massage room having a conversation with Amy. Ching Lee was lying on the table apparently in the process of getting a massage. She was lying face down on the table topless with a towel draped over her bottom.
Belinda and Sarah were with a rough looking group at the boxing ring with Shelia and her boxing buddies who were working on the bags with two of the visitors.
I waited until Marcy caught up and asked, “What time did you open?”
“We were all here at 9. Kim and Marsha had some friends that wanted to get tanned today so we let them come in so we could all get used to the process. Friend’s texted friends and we have been going non stop. Then with all the traffic everybody started coming in.’ She said. “The radio station that has been running the ads is to be here at 1. They are going to do several live commercials. Vicky and Lorrie have been working with them.
“The TV reporter came in and when she saw your picture in the waiting room decided to wait until you get here. She was the reporter at the Food King incident as she called it. She wants a group interview with us.” Marcy said.
“We can do it any time. We have enough help with everyone here to be able to break away for a few minutes. If they hang around they may keep people away.” Marcy set up the interview to happen in ten minutes.
We used the chairs from the refreshment center putting them in a close semi-circle as the TV crew added the necessary lighting. Marcy, Ching Lee, Vicky, Lorrie, Jenny, Shelia, Jamie and I took seats and waited to be interview by Local Events reporter Marley Kendall. We put the seats into position so that as the camera person moved around to focus individually there would be some part of gym happenings in the back ground.
For half an hour we talked fitness, tanning and training. There were several big topics. The first was the hand gun safety class with the carry permit application. Marley tried her best to twist everything around to suit the stations liberal view. Jamie was prepared and held her own and even scored a couple of points. Almost every one in the gym became an audience to the interview and was gathered around.
The next was the boxing ring. Marley had a real problem boxing with all the sudden interest in sports concussions. I made sure that I stayed out of that discussion. Shelia had the fiery disposition of most boxers and used it in a way that kept Marley off stride and the rest of us laughing.
After losing two in a row Marley settled some but went after us for having a masseur and hot tubs. Marcy and Lorrie went after her with that. They even challenged her to a four hour work out with them at their pace to see if she had the same opinion about the tubs. To my amazement she accepted. She was going to come back and do four hours from 5 to 9 and then do a live report for the 10 PM news cast. This lady was at least fifteen pounds overweight. She was going to be one hurting puppy long before the four hours was up.
The rest of the afternoon was busy and steady. The refreshment center moved a lot of sports drinks and yogurt along with fruit. Jason made four more runs to pick things up for it. Mom stayed busy entering new members to the email club.
At 4 Kate came and joined one of the groups that were being given the open house tour. After she had seen everything she came to me and asked if we could make the sponsor ship offer to Misty and Belinda. I called both of them over. Kate explained how it worked, the requirements and expectations and the timeline to make it happen in time to start the new semester in January. They were both interested but needed time to think about it. I suggested that they make the trip with one of the girls and get the grand tour in the next day or so before making a decision. We had started getting busy again so we all had to get back to work.
Lorrie made several live radio ads that hit right at rush hour. It created a rush for us as well. Lorrie made the announcement on air that at 5 PM Christmas gift books for all gym activities would be available. With everything going on Marcy and Ching Lee had found time to put together the fees for a gift plan. FedEx had delivered the books and holiday envelopes at 4.
At 5 Marley Kendall came back in with an all woman camera crew and two more of her mid-day reporters. Marcy and Lorrie had 4 hours of real work cut out for them now.
I should have expected to be involved in the challenge. I knew when the group came walking towards me that I was going to be involved. We sat at one of the tables where I began the questions. Those questions could be summed up in a couple. At the end of the day what are you looking for? Do you want weight loss or to add muscle mass, build stamina and endurance or just a maintenance exercise routine?”
The three ladies all had different objectives. Marley said, “I stand in front of the camera. The camera makes every pound look like 10 pounds. When it comes to contract renewal time looks are important. I want to loose weight and keep it off. If I add a little muscle in the shoulders and upper arms it will be good.
Lacy Combs, the second lady on the early morning show, pulled an exercise magazine out and pointed out a picture of a medium class female weight lifter at an exhibition in a thong and a very little top and very oiled and said, “I have always been the weakling. I could never get into sports at school because I never looked the part. I want the strength and the muscle mass and endurance. I want to walk out on our show in that outfit looking like that”
Linda Speaks, the third of the lot said, “I want it all, I want improvement in all areas. I don’t have to run the Boston marathon or be a world class weight lifter. I want to generally feel better about myself, how I look and how I endure. I huff and puff going up two flights of stairs – I’m not that old, just out of shape. I want to get back in shape.“
It was my turn to talk now. “First each of you is going to need a completely different exercise plan. The first thing that we need to happen before we can get aggressive is you need a physical. If you have had one in the last year just get your doctor to write a note that you are healthy enough to get into an aggressive fitness program.”
“Tonight we will go through the basics to see where you are physically and then I can work up a program to meet your goals. Then you have to make the decision – are you ready to devote a couple of hours a night every night to this? If you can do that then at the end of a couple of months you will see the changes you want and at the end of six months you can look in the mirror at the new you Everybody can come up with a couple of hours a day if you really want it. Let’s go find out where you are at and then you can decide if you want to make commitment.”
For the next three hours we took the three ladies through all the exercise machines working to build a base line to start from. We ran them in the tread mill that had the heart rate monitor. Then we went through the machines one last time as a workout. The whole time the film crew was filming and there was an audience of sometimes a hundred people or more watching. At nine we hit the showers, then the hot tub and then they hit the massage table where Amy gave them the works. They needed it because we put them through the works. While they were getting finished up Marcy, Lorrie and I helped the girls clean up the gym and get it shut down for the night. We thanked the Moms and Dads for all their help.
Marcy backed up all the data and then closed out the cash register and credit card information. Marcy smiled and said. “I will work up the final numbers tomorrow morning but I can tell you it has been a great day.”
The media crew was finished. I advised them to take a couple of pain relievers at bedtime and that they would be sore tomorrow. But it would only be a temporary thing as they got used to the routine. No pain no gain.
Everyone was exhausted so it was showers, the hot tubs, hugs and kisses and we called it a night. We didn’t even watch the eleven news report to see what Marley had to say. We did DVR it so I could watch it tomorrow morning at breakfast.
EDIT by Alfmeister