​​​​​​Dina Greenberg

Beaver Pond

Amarillo Bay, May 2012

Jana spotted Kent and Barbara before they could pick her out among the other passengers in the little airport. They both looked tanned and healthy, outrageously so, Jana thought. Barbara's figure, athletic but never curvy, had settled into the solid, big-boned authority of middle age. She'd let her hair—still that same wild mass of shoulder-length curls—go completely gray, and a pair of artsy, beaded earrings hung boldly from each lobe. The effect of all of this, the gray hair, the bright turquoise and coral against her friend's tanned and weathered skin, seemed somewhat dramatic. Barbara had finally achieved that earth-mother look she'd been after since way back in college.

And Kent, perhaps a little heavier than the last time she'd visited, still managed to maintain his Nordic look of rugged handsomeness. The same blue eyes, intelligent and perpetually hinting at some private amusement, ranged over the group of travelers, and finally alighted on Jana's. A smile of unrestricted pleasure spread across his face before he threw his arm over his wife's shoulder and steered her in Jana's direction.