My Kind of Town

by Don Chapman

Saturday, August 4, 2001

The full moon’s fault

>> Kahala Mandarin Oriental

Later, Fawn Nakamura would blame it on the full moon. Because something magical had happened and she was overcome with a feeling that she'd never known, and it had little to do with the tea and cucumber sandwiches she'd just enjoyed at the Veranda.

Fawn was standing at the port cochere with Chuck Ryan, waiting for the valets to bring their cars, and it was another of those awkward moments. There had been a few since the 27-year-old virgin and the 51-year-old widower realized earlier today that they wanted to get to know one another better, but weren't sure how to jump the obvious chasm of the generations. Chuck had fulfilled one of her romantic fantasies when they came here for tea and conversation, and she had another one that really ought to wait until they knew each other better. But Fawn was not ready for the night to end. "The moon is so lovely," she blurted, "would you like to walk on the beach?"

He matched her blurt for blurt: "I can't think of anything nicer!"

Ryan tipped Billie Pasco, the head valet, and said that on second thought they'd be back for the cars later.

>> Executive Center

Van Truong and Dr. Laurie Tang and their ER crew at Queen's had saved two lives today. Van was proud of her work and found it satisfying. But at the end of the day, the other side of the bed was always cold. And she was more than a nurse, she was a woman.

She used to be even more than that. Van used to be a mother. She struggled with one question in her daily life and she did again here, following the prompts that would produce a personal ad for the Heart2Heart/2knowU Internet dating service: Do you have children? What should she say -- no, I do not have any children, but I have the stretch marks to prove I once did? Hong, her beautiful baby, was almost two when she died. It was when they were on that leaky, filthy tub someone dared to call a boat, and which her family dared to board. That's how much they feared and loathed the Communists.

Hey, but this was only the Internet, where truth is but a vapor. Only the stretch marks are real. She clicked on no -- no children.

Van held her breath as she clicked the "send" box on her computer screen. There was no going back now. She had just submitted her ad to Heart2-Heart/2knowU. She didn't know where it would lead. She only knew that she was oh so tired of being lonely.

Don Chapman is editor of MidWeek.
His serialized novel runs daily in the Star-Bulletin
with weekly summaries on Sunday.
He can be emailed at

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