DEAR ABBY: Six years ago, my husband and I honeymooned in French Polynesia where we met three other newlywed couples. Some older people were there also. We considered them intruders and were pretty rotten to them. We hogged the hammocks, beach chairs and best tables, made fun of their bodies and generally made their lives miserable.
My father is a retired military officer who divorced my mother and moved to the Gulf Coast. Each year we join his houseguests for a big birthday barbecue weekend. A good friend of his from Virginia, an older woman, attends almost every year.
One of my uncles mentioned they were going to French Polynesia, so I brought our honeymoon pictures this year. When my father's friend saw them, she said she had been there at the same time we were, recovering from a month-long camping trip in Australia. We soon realized why she looked so "familiar." She was one of our victims. She must have recognized us long ago, but said nothing. We were so mortified, we returned to our room with a "headache."
I couldn't look at her the rest of the weekend and left without a word. My father knows something is wrong, but I can't bring myself to tell him. I have always been his favorite and would not want him to think I am such a rotten person. How do I get out of this? -- DADDY'S LITTLE GIRL
DEAR LITTLE GIRL: Your bodies may have been firm and beautiful, but the side of yourself you showed your unfortunate fellow travelers was truly ugly. If you have learned nothing else from your experience, it's that the world is becoming an increasingly smaller place.
There is no way to "get out of this." So grow up, fess up, and apologize to your father's friend for your inexcusably rude behavior. She showed a lot of character by not telling your father about you, and you can learn a lot from her that you should have learned long ago.