Şubat 23, 2021

Bakersfield and Country Music

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Hardcore

Author’s Note: This is a rarity for me, a stand-alone story. I would like to give special thanks to @goducks111 for providing the idea for this story. I did my best to follow his suggestions. I hope you enjoy.

-Nosebone

Friday, August 8, 2019: Bakersfield, CA

I was driving back to my hotel that afternoon after a long day of sales calls. I was more discouraged than I’d been in years. I was on my quarterly tour of the west coast. It was a three-week test of my endurance where I would visit all our heavy-equipment dealerships in Washington, Oregon and California. As a national sales manager, it was my job to show the flag and rally the troops to get them motivated to visit all prospective clients and ensure their needs were met.

My level of discouragement was a result of my visit to our Bakersfield dealership. The sales staff there were undermotivated to say the least. I knew I’d been young and new in the field once, but I’d always showed initiative. When an experienced guy tried to help me, I listened closely and took their advice to heart. Not these fucking kids. On our visit to Higgins Construction, one of the largest road contractors in California, the president openly expressed his frustration with Dylan, my young protégé. I’d worked with Bob and his dad for over 20 years, but Bob didn’t bother sugar coating the fact that Dylan was useless at best. It took Dylan weeks to return Bob’s phone calls and he never stopped by the office to visit. Then Bob dropped the bomb by saying he’d recently purchased over $38 million in new heavy equipment from Komatsu and had no plans to buy anything from us again.

Once we were alone in the car, I let Dylan have it with both barrels.

“You can’t miss opportunities like that, Dylan,” I explained.

“It’s hard. I’m not really motivated because my commissions haven’t been what I thought they would be,” he whined. I lost it at that point and pulled the car over on the shoulder of the road.

“Your commissions? You’re fucking kidding me, right,” I fumed. “You missed a $38 million-dollar sale because you couldn’t return the man’s phone calls and stop by for a fucking cup of coffee once a week! Do you realize what your fucking commission would have been on that? Do you have any idea what I would have done to have a client like that when I was your age? He was your fucking gravy train and you threw it away.”

He looked at me stupidly, which I’d learned was his usual demeanor. Thankfully, he didn’t say anything more or I would have made him walk the four miles back. I put the car in drive and took him back to the dealership. Once there, I talked to the branch manager. I told him Dylan better have his shit packed and be gone that afternoon. I then gave the branch manager a stern talk about the way he ran his operation. The rest of the afternoon I made sales calls by myself and found that most of our long-term customers were pissed off. I knew whoever they hired to replace Dylan was in for an uphill battle.

When I got to the hotel, I decided to have a glass of scotch while I typed up my contact reports. I called room service and dinner was sent up while I worked. When I finished, I realized it was almost 8 o’clock. It was too late to call my son unless I wanted to risk the wrath of my ex-wife. I decided I’d call him in the morning and try to keep the peace.

I took a shower and thought about going to bed early. I knew I didn’t have to be anywhere tomorrow and wouldn’t fly to my next stop until Sunday. I remembered there was a country and western bar across the street that offered live music. I thought I might as well go over and listen for a while. I dressed and was soon walking across the street towards the Palomino Club.

It was a big place and I seemed to remember it from a movie somewhere. I imagined it’d probably hosted some big names over the years. Once inside, I walked to the bar and ordered a beer before I meandered over towards the stage. There was an empty table, but it was right in front and I didn’t want to be “that guy” sitting by himself. I looked around and didn’t see any other tables, so I finally decided to sit down. I sipped my beer and listened to the first band. They were more blue grass than typical country western, but I really enjoyed the banjo and the stand-up bass. The band looked like they’d probably fit in better in a punk club with their brightly dyed hair and outfits, but they could certainly play. They finished their set and the announcer said that the next act would be on in about 15 minutes. A cute young waitress walked by and I ordered another beer.

After the blue grass band cleared the stage, the next act began setting up their equipment. I sipped my beer and watched them as well as surveying the crowd. I always enjoyed people bahis firmaları watching. The lights dimmed and a spotlight came on the center stage. The band began strumming an old song, from long before my time. My Dad had been an avid fan of country & western music and I recognized it immediately as Patsy Cline’s, “Crazy”. I looked to the left and saw a woman walking across the stage towards the microphone.

Once she was in the spotlight, I could make out her features. She was wearing a tight, strapless black dress. It was probably a little too fancy and out of place for the Palomino Club, but it did give her a touch of old school charm. She was a curvy little thing, maybe 5’2″ without her heels. The dress did everything it could to accentuate those curves, particularly her generous bosom and shapely hips. She reminded me of the women of the 1950’s, back before rail-thin women were popular.

I studied her more closely as she began to sing. She didn’t have the greatest voice, but she sounded comfortable, much like she was singing for friends. Her hair was dark like the midnight sky and she looked like she might be Latina. Her dark eyes seemed to sparkle in the spotlight. As I watched her, her eyes focused me. I found myself in the curious situation of feeling as if she was singing to only me. Her eyes scarcely left mine for the remainder of the song. When it finished, I clapped heartily, and I thought I saw her wink at me.

The next few songs were a little more upbeat country and western classics. I found that she was still looking at me as she sang. The final song of the set was Merle Haggard’s “Okie from Muskogee.” That touched me as I’d grown up in Tulsa not far from Muskogee. Again, she didn’t have the prettiest voice, but she sang with her heart and that made the performance that much better. When their set finished, the band disappeared backstage. I ordered one final beer and thought I’d wait until the next set was finished before I walked back to the hotel.

To my surprise, the singer walked out from backstage and came over to my table. I tried to play it cool, but she was even prettier up close.

“Are you enjoying the show,” she asked. I picked up just a hint of her Mexican heritage in her accent.

“Yeah, I was actually. You have a great voice,” I said.

“Thank you,” she smiled. “I really don’t, but I love to sing.”

“I think you do,” I said. “Would you like to take a seat? I just ordered another beer. Can I get you something?”

“Maybe just a glass of water,” she smiled before she took a seat. The waitress arrived with my beer and a glass of water with a slice of lemon and lime.

“Jenny knows what I like,” she said of the waitress.

“That’s good,” I smiled. “I’m John by the way.” I extended my hand across the table.

“Maria. It’s nice to meet you, John,” she smiled softly as she took my hand.

“So, how long have you been singing,” I asked.

“Forever,” she laughed. “I started in the choir at church. I’ve been doing it ever since. It helped me get through college. Now, I just do it for fun.”

“That’s awesome,” I replied. “What’s your day job?”

“I’m a nurse,” she smiled. “You?”

“Heavy equipment sales,” I said.

“Oh, you’re a traveling salesman, perhaps,” she asked with a grin.

“Yeah, sometimes,” I said. “I’m on a three-week trip right now.”

“That’s a long time away from home,” she said.

“Yeah, but it’s just an apartment where I hang my clothes,” I said.

She nodded. “I know the feeling.”

“Divorced,” I asked.

“Yes. I’m guessing you as well,” she replied. I simply nodded. There was a pause and I was afraid I’d pushed the conversation too hard. She finally smiled and stood from her chair.

“I should be going. Our next set will begin soon,” she said.

“I understand. Before you go, can I ask you one question?”

“Sure, I guess so,” she said.

“When you were singing, it was like you were singing to me,” I said.

“Yes,” she nodded. “It’s something I do. It helps me put the emotion into the song. You can’t sing Patsy Cline without emotion. I saw you and knew I would sing to you tonight.”

I could only nod and smile.

“Will you be here for a while,” she asked.

“I’m not going anywhere,” I smiled, my previous plans to leave forgotten.

“Good. We play one more set and then we’re finished. Maybe we can have a drink together, then,” she said.

“I look forward to it,” I replied.

“Me too,” she smiled. I watched her as she walked away in the dim lighting. She walked with a flair that seemed to accentuate her hips. Without thinking, I licked my lips as I watched her. I looked forward to having a drink with her.

The second set was just as good as the first. She sang multiple ballads of lost love and put her heart into each one. I noticed a few minor mistakes, but she sang on, not acknowledging them. As during the first set, her eyes rarely left mine and I felt like I was in a trance. When they finished playing, kaçak iddaa there was a large round of applause. She took a bow and I couldn’t help but notice her lovely cleavage. She disappeared briefly before I saw her come back out and head towards my table.

“That was great,” I said as she took a seat.

“Thank you,” she replied. “I stumbled a bit on a few of the songs. They were new and we just started playing them live.”

“I hardly noticed,” I smiled.

“You wouldn’t,” she laughed.

“I really thought it was great. What can I get you,” I asked as the waitress wandered past our table.

“A gin and tonic would be fine. My throat is dry,” she smiled. I ordered another beer and the waitress left to get our drinks.

“So, where were we earlier,” I asked.

“I think you were about to ask me for my life story,” she laughed.

“I hope I wasn’t being too intrusive,” I smiled.

“No, not too bad,” she said. “I’ve had worse.”

“I’m sure you have,” I replied.

“I’ll give you the short version and then you can give me yours, sound fair,” she asked.

“Yes, very fair,” I laughed.

“I was married for a while, but we couldn’t make it work. No little ones. I have my work and my singing,” she said. I nodded at her.

“Mine is similar, except I have a son. I have my work and little else,” I said.

“We sound like two very exciting people,” she laughed. Our drinks arrived and she took a sip of hers. “Mmmm, I needed that.”

“I bet,” I said.

We looked at one another for a long moment. I wasn’t sure what my next move should be, and I could sense the same apprehension in her. The next band came on and the volume of the music would have drowned out any meaningful conversation. I watched her take a sip of her drink and then she sat the glass back down.

“Where are you staying,” she practically yelled.

“Across the street,” I replied.

“They have a bar. Let’s go over there. I can barely hear you,” she said.

“Okay,” I replied with a smile. She grabbed her clutch and we walked towards the door.

Once we were outside, she spoke again. “They play after us a lot. They’re really loud.”

“Yes, they were,” I laughed.

“You’re taller than I thought you were,” she smiled. I was about 8 inches taller than her even though she was wearing tall heels.

“I hope that’s not a problem,” I replied.

“No, of course not,” she smiled. “I like taller men. Let’s go.”

“Yes, let’s go,” I agreed. The night air was pleasant as compared to the heat of the day. We walked across the parking lot and she hooked her arm in mine. I turned to look at her and she smiled.

“You don’t mind, do you,” she asked.

“No, of course not,” I smiled. “How could I mind a beautiful lady taking my arm on a stroll?”

“You’re quite the charmer,” she laughed.

“I haven’t even trying to be charming yet,” I laughed.

“I should watch out then, shouldn’t I,” she smiled.

“Maybe a little,” I agreed. We entered the hotel lobby and walked to the bar. It was surprisingly empty for a Friday night, but I was happy that it was. We found a booth in the corner and after she sat down, she patted the seat next to her. I sat and she smiled.

“That’s better,” she smiled.

“Yes, it is,” I agreed. “Another gin and tonic?”

“No, I think I’ll have a beer if you’re having one,” she replied.

“Sure,” I said. The waitress came over, obviously bored since the place was dead, to take our order.

“John, I guess I should explain something to you before anything goes further tonight,” she said.

“What’s that,” I asked.

“First off, I don’t make a habit of this sort of thing. I honestly don’t. Second off, I’m not sure why I’m doing it tonight,” she said.

“You mean having a beer with a stranger,” I asked, trying to make light of the situation.

“Nice try,” she smiled. “You know what I mean. I’ve come back to your hotel. You’re obviously interested in me and I’m interested in you. We’re adults.”

“I know what you’re saying. And I don’t make a habit of it either,” I replied. “I’ve kept mostly to myself since my divorce.”

“How long has it been,” she asked.

“18 months,” I replied.

“I see. It’s been almost three years for me,” she said.

“Do you date much,” I asked.

“No,” she said. “Men our age want one thing. I’m not going into anything with the pretext of getting to know someone when me spreading my legs is all that they’re really interested in.”

“That’s fair,” I said. “I don’t have much to offer from the male perspective either. I tend to attract the mother of three down on her luck with nothing to lose.”

“I can see that,” she smiled. “I guess I’m just independent. I don’t know. I never feel like I need a man in my life, but then I have a night like tonight, and I see you sitting there.” The waitress arrived with our beers. She lifted hers.

“What should we drink to,” she asked.

“How about independence,” I said.

“That’s kaçak bahis a good one,” she smiled. We clinked our bottles together lightly and each took a sip. “I love a good beer when it’s hot.”

“So, do I,” I agreed.

“When do you leave,” she asked after she took another sip.

“My flight is at 3 on Sunday,” I replied.

“So, you’ll be here all weekend,” she smiled.

“Yeah, I will,” I said smiling back.

“I like that,” she said.

“Yeah, me too,” I agreed.

“Why don’t we go upstairs,” she suggested. “These heels are beginning to kill me.”

“Sure,” I said. I left a twenty on the table and we headed to the elevator. Once the door closed, she turned towards me. I looked down and saw her smile. Her bright red lips looked inviting and I couldn’t resist. I took her in my arms and softly kissed her. She was obviously looking for more than that and kissed me ravenously. I hadn’t a woman kiss me like that in a long time, if ever. When we finally parted, I couldn’t help but smile.

“Wow,” I said. “That was really something.”

“Thanks, you too,” she smiled. “My ex-husband said I was frigid.”

“Shame on him,” I smiled. “That’s the last thing I would think.”

She smiled again just before the elevator door opened. I took her hand and we walked to my room. I opened the door and she walked in first. When the door closed, she turned to me and we kissed again. I thought the first time was amazing, but the second time took my breath away. I held her tightly against me and my hands rubbed across her bare upper back. I couldn’t believe a woman like her had just walked in my life that night. We gradually moved towards the bed, hardly breaking our kissing. I fell back on the bed, pulling her on top of me.

“Whee,” she laughed as we came to a rest.

“Yes,” I agreed before our lips met once again. The kissing intensified further, and she rolled over on her back, pulling me with her. I knelt above her on my hands and knees and she started unbuttoning my shirt. After she pulled it from my slacks, her hands swiftly pulled it off and tossed it aside. Her hands reached for my sides and she rubbed her way upwards across my chest to my shoulders. She finally held my neck as we continued to kiss.

I couldn’t resist any longer and I reached out with my right hand to cup her generous breasts through her dress. I was dying to see her naked, but I was taking my time after her comment earlier. I knew we were going to have sex, but she had something about her that I really liked. I certainly wasn’t going to rush things. As I gently rubbed and squeezed her breasts, she broke our kissing momentarily.

“You should unzip my dress,” she said in almost a whisper. I nodded and we rolled once more so that I was on my back with her on top of me. My hands moved to her bare back down to where her dress started. I located the zipper and slowly pulled it down as she continued to give me the most amazing kisses. When the zipper reached the bottom, she kissed me one final time before standing up. I raised myself up on my elbows and watched as she slowly slipped the dress down. By the dim light coming from the lamp, I admired her hourglass figure. She looked perfect standing in front of me in a matching black balconette bra and tiny bikini panties. I said the only thing that came to my mind.

“You’re gorgeous, Maria.”

She smiled broadly before she reached for the front clasp of her bra. When she removed it, I was amazed by how her breasts still stood proudly on her chest. They were truly a work of art. Her tiny panties joined her bra on the floor, before she crawled back on the bed, straddling my lap. She placed her hands on my chest and pushed slightly, so I laid back once again. She kissed me softly and slowly before her lips moved to my cheek and then my neck. Downwards she went, across my chest and abdomen. Finally, she was kissing just above my belt line. I raised up on elbows again to watch her unbuckling my belt. Once it was unfastened, she pulled my pants down to mid-thigh, before she stood from the bed again. She pulled off my shoes and socks, before removing my pants.

“You’re pretty nice yourself,” she smiled. A certain part of my body was showing her exactly how gorgeous I thought she was. Her hand reached for it and she stroked me gently. She crawled back on the bed and laid next to me, her hand never breaking contact with my manhood. I took her in my arms and kissed her repeatedly. As the kisses built in passion, so did her stoking of my manhood. I tried to roll her over on her back as I wanted to go down on her, but she had other plans. She threw her leg over me and settled her hips on top of mine. She resumed kissing me while she slowly ground her wet sex against my erection which was trapped between us.

“I don’t know what it is,” she panted between kisses. “But I’m really hot for you right now.”

“I know what you mean,” I managed to say.

“I’m about to have you inside me and I don’t know your full name,” she moaned.

“Sanders,” I groaned. “John Sanders.”

“Nice to meet you,” she giggled. “I’m Maria Diaz.” She stopped her grinding and she raised her right leg. Her hand reached between us and she pushed her hips down on me.

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