a One Act Play
Mona R. Washington
Lena Hayes – A youngish, very attractive thirty-seven, strong-willed and free spirited.
Andrew (“Drew”) Hayes – An oldish, stoic thirty-eight, deliberate and proud.
September 2008. Two days into a vacation week. Buppie splendour in Martha’s Vineyard. Andrew, Lena and Baldwin Hayes visit their friends, Lisa, Walter and Steffie Smith, at their summer home in Oak Bluffs. All action takes place in the bright, oft-used laundry room.
Curtain up. Bright lights.
Drew Hayes stands alone in front of the washing machine in the laundry room. A huge pile of laundry sits on the floor beside him next to laundry baskets. A step stool rests by the wall. Laundry detergent and Woolite sit on the top of the dryer. As Lena enters the laundry room he quickly stuffs something into his pocket.
LENA: I’ve been looking all over for you. Do you still want to take that walk?
DREW: Sure. Do I have to leave the house?
Drew begins to sort laundry and load the washing machine. Lena walks over to him.
LENA: Don’t be lazy. The sunset is beautiful. (laughing) Remember the first time we came up here?
DREW: Of course I do. You act like I’m eighty-five or something.
LENA: Do not.
DREW: You had on that wild straw hat you wore with everything.
LENA: I thought you liked my hat.
DREW: I liked what was under it, and we’d just started dating.
LENA: You call it dating? Oh…Drew, you were smooth.
DREW: Sleeping together. Hanging out. Doing the wild thing. Maki-
Lena grabs him and kisses him passionately. Drew responds and they almost knock over the detergent. Finally, they break apart. Drew smiles as he begins to load the washing machine. He doesn’t know how to set the dials. Lena laughs and helps him. Drew laughs at himself. Their bodies still touch slightly.
DREW: Give me some credit for trying baby.
Lena makes a face.
DREW: OK. OK. I’m that bad. I admit it.
LENA: I agree. I think Yolanda’s job is safe.
DREW: It shouldn’t be.
LENA: Cut her some slack. She didn’t mean to ruin your sweaters.
DREW: She didn’t offer to replace them.
Lena pours in detergent and closes the lid. She puts the detergent bottle and Woolite in one of the empty laundry baskets.
LENA: How is she going to replace them Drew? Not pay her rent or feed her girls for two months?
She moves the basket away from the washing machine and toward the step stool.
DREW: She could have offered. That’s all I’m saying.
Drew shrugs. Lena and Drew briefly study one another. Drew puts the remaining clothes back into a laundry basket.
DREW: Lisa and Walter look great, don’t they? It’s been too long.
LENA: It has. I’m glad Baldwin and Steffie hit it off. I didn’t think we were going to be able to get him out of that bunk bed this morning. We should do something really nice for Lisa and Walter. They’re so thoughtful.
DREW: I thought we were taking them out for dinner.
LENA: We could, but I thought a new porch swing would be nicer.
DREW: That sounds good. It’s crystal clear out there at night. It’s so quiet.
LENA: It sure is. And it’ll be night before you finish the wash. Let’s get going. We’re going to lose the sun.
DREW: Are you sure I can’t talk you into a martini instead?
LENA: You have a slight chance.
Lena moves away and looks out of a window in the laundry room.
LENA: Aren’t you glad we didn’t leave Baldwin at home?
DREW: I am. We’d have been on the phone with your mother every day explaining why he ‘acts like that’. Oh, I love your mother!
Lena walks over to Drew. He pulls her close.
DREW: This is the part where you say ‘My mother loves you too’. Let’s try it again. I love your mother.
LENA: It’s nice being here all together.
Lena pecks him sweetly on the cheek and fusses with his hair.
LENA: (Smiling) Of course she loves you. You know how she is. When you’re not around it’s ‘my son-in-law Andrew this and my son-in-law Andrew that’. But you didn’t make it to her birthday party. What did you expect?
DREW: Forgiveness. Her party was my idea. I even found a good swing band on Long Island in the middle of June. How did I know I’d be stranded in Chicago because my flight was cancelled?
LENA: You didn’t, poor baby.
Lena plants little kisses all over his face, buttering him up. He looks at her and tilts his head.
LENA: Drew-py, I was thinking this morning that maybe we should buy a place here. OK, rent a place here if the market picks up….and your bonus is fully paid out and everything at the bank seems stable, blah blah blah.
DREW: Renting sounds good. I just hope Clinton stays out of this part of the Vineyard, looking for his people and bringing the press. Don’t look at me like that.
LENA: Bill’s not even running.