Ashley had been on a diet for nearly a year and was five pounds away from losing the twenty she’d picked up while in college. Five pounds was all she needed to lose within the next 4 weeks to have a better fit in the bridesmaid dress for her sister’s wedding. How hard could that be?
Angela, a year younger than her sister, was as beautiful as her name. She even looked angelic with her curly blond hair and shapely body. Looking in the mirror as she tried on the form-fitting, floor-length pink gown, Ashley cried at the image glaring back at her. She fluffed up her red pixie-cut hair.
“I look like a bag of cotton candy with a cherry on top!” She stepped out of the dress and threw herself onto her bed.
“I’ll never find Mr. Right!”
The next day, the sisters joined up to visit the State Fair, as was their tradition since high school. Ashley was excited, for she loved the fair, but felt cheated for not being able to partake of all the wonderful foods the fair had to offer.
Walking along the aisles of vendors, Ashley caught the wonderful aroma of barbecued meat. Oh how she loved fair food! Dutifully, she denied herself the treats that went along with the yearly event. Her mouth watered at the sight of the fried onion ring blooms, giant curly fries and cheesy nachos that people carried past her. She drooled at the boysenberry and powdered sugar–topped funnel cakes and super-sized donuts.
But no, she mustn’t. She needed to lose a few more pounds so that she did not look like an ice cream sundae oozing down the aisle at Angela’s wedding. Ashley sighed as she poked her fork at the veggies that had slipped off the thin-crusted veggie pizza. Sure, it was healthy, but there should be a law against calling this pizza. Ashley loved pizza with lots of cheese and it had to have a thick crust--not a wedge of cardboard disguised as the pizza base.
Throughout the day, Ashley kept bumping into people because she watched their food instead of where she was going. She teased herself by gazing at the displays of yumminess-- banana splits, fried zucchini, fried cheese, Indian Fry Bread. The tantalizing aroma of barbecued giant turkey legs wrapped in bacon was almost too much to resist.
“Unfair,” she thought, as she took another sip from her third serving of iced tea.
At the last exhibit they were viewing before leaving for the day, Ashley noticed a booth where they made fudge. She watched as the vendor stirred up a puddle of chocolate on a marble slap. The attendant was a hunky-looking guy with large brown eyes. The young man looked up at Ashley and winked. She felt her face turning red, but her mind was upon the task of the cute guy as he manipulated the chocolaty goo into a delicious looking solid.
With a deep sigh, she turned away from the fudge stand.
“Would you like a sample?” Her eyes widened at the cube of freshly made fudge being held out by Mr. Brown Eyes. Ashley held out a trembling hand in anticipation of the chocolate, and then slid it onto her tongue. She felt blissful with the taste of the warm fudgy clump melting in her mouth.
“I’ve got a break in ten minutes; wanna have a soda? I’ll meet you at the lemonade booth in the back.”
The good-looking guy with the chocolate brown eyes gazed into Ashley’s green eyes. She nodded, sped around, and disappeared in the crowd.
Ashley found her sister at an exhibit that sold lovely hair ornaments that Ashley could never use with her short, thin hair. She stared at her stunning sister, and then glanced at her own reflection in the bejeweled mirror on the counter. She rolled her eyes as she poked her sister’s back.
“I’ll wait outside.” Her sister nodded, and then returned her attention to the glittery hair decorations.
Heading towards the lemonade stand, Ashley sighed as the last bit of chocolate melted away into oblivion.
Disrupting her moment of bliss, a red-headed teenager eating cotton candy crashed into Ashley without apology.
Suddenly, she knew what she was going to do. Ashley turned around and headed for the front of the building.
“I’ll have the waffle cone please; lots of hot fudge! Oh yes, peanuts and marshmallow cream would be nice. Thank you!”
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