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"Oh, Marilyn, I'm so excited!" Catarina sighed and spun in a circle, her shoulder length, brown hair twirling around her. "I didn't think I'd ever get to visit London."
Marilyn laughed and tried to keep little David from running off with his sister's bottle. She patted him on his bottom and shooed him towards his father. "I know what you mean. The first time David and I went to visit his parents, I was on cloud nine. It's a fabulous city; historical sights at every turn, the most delicious foods and you can dance all night at many of the nightspots, similar to their pubs. You'll have a wonderful time. I wish we were going with you."
"Me, too. It would have been perfect if you and David could have come at the same time, then I wouldn't be going alone." She turned towards the rose garden and tried to look her most innocent. "Please, David. Couldn't you get away for just a few days?"
"Sorry, Cat, but we're in the middle of a corporate wide audit and I really can't get away."
Catarina smiled. "I know. You can't blame me for trying one last time."
David picked up his son and carried him towards the women. He put him down on the bench next to Marilyn and picked up Mary, their three-month-old angel. "Maybe next year, we can all go together. The trip will be on us."
Catarina blushed. "I didn't mean it like that."
David handed Mary into Catarina's arms. "Don't worry, we'll find some way for you to repay us." His brows moved up and down alluding to his daughter. "Marilyn and I always need a sitter." He laughed and dodged Catarina's quick kick.
"More like Marilyn and I will leave the kids with you and hit the pubs she wastalking about." Her dark brown eyes gleaming, she laughed and handed Mary back to him. She looked at her watch. "Well, I'd better get my bags downstairs. I have to leave within the hour." Her pulse started beating faster at the thought of boarding the plane headed for London.
Marilyn stood and they walked into the house laughing. "Don't worry I'll hold David to his promise. Next year, we're all going to London, if you can get a break from that pediatric office of yours again. I didn't think Dr. Lennox was going to let you go this time."
"Neither did I. It took a bit of persuasion, like me saying I had to get away, or I was going to start looking elsewhere. That shook him up a bit."
"I'm sure it did. That office runs like a well-oiled machine. He'll see."
"I know." Catarina skipped up the stairs and turned into the first room on the right. It was done in buttercup colors and looked out over the massive flower garden outside. Catarina loved the view. The curtains were blowing and she walked over and pushed them open. "Thank you for letting me stay this weekend, but I wish we had more time together."
"I do, too. We'll make a trip to Dallas, soon. David hasn't been to the Dallas store the last quarter and I know he's anxious to see how things are going. We'll wait until you're back and settled before we come down. Then, we can get together. Mom and dad would be thrilled to keep the children while we visit."
"That would be nice." She turned back towards Marilyn. Marilyn and David had a wonderful marriage. It was hard at first, him getting over the accident and having to learn to walk again, but now things seemed to be normal. They'd only been married two short years and already had two beautiful children, a boy and girl. Catarina envied Marilyn her happy, full life.
"I'm so glad things turned out for you and David. I wish I could have been here for you when you were going through all your trials with his accident."
"Nonsense, it turned out perfect. David and I are ecstatically happy." Marilyn smiled.
"I know and I hope nothing ever interferes with your happiness." She took a deep breath. "Enough of the serious stuff. I'm fixing to leave for London, my dream trip." She laughed and raised her arms up high.
Marilyn took one of Catarina's bags. "Come on, let's load up the car. You can't be late for your flight. You'd never forgive me."
David met them at the bottom of the stairs. "Marie's going to watch the munchkins for us while we take Cat to the airport."
"Wow, an outing without diapers. Let's run while we can." Marilyn laughed and bolted for the door. David and Catarina followed behind joining in her laughter.