"You know how every woman gets up and walks to the bathroom after sex?" she says. "Well, I had just gotten up, and when I came back, he was on the floor."
She recalls moments they shared here, some charming, some erotic, and some gross — like the time he dropped his ring and ended up digging it out of a trash bag full of used condoms.
Unlikely as it may seem, Susan says, fellow swingers have become some of her closest friends. Mark and Karen call her at home to see how she's doing. They get her out of the house. As Mark hears Susan telling her story, he slides his hand over her leg. "We look after one another here," he says.
One of Susan's friends, Sandy, dances around the table in a short, white, tennis-style skirt and a vest with nothing underneath. "When everything gets going, it's like there's some kind of pixie dust in the air," Sandy says. "Sex is contagious."
Sandy, who never reveals her age but looks to be in her mid-50s, has been swinging for nearly 40 years and says she still loves it. "It's one of the only places you can get naked in public, for starters," she says. Then she removes her vest.
Tonight she's here with Luis, a rather large, bearded biker she's been dating for a few weeks. They met at a motorcycle rally, and Sandy invited him to the club. He doesn't drink or do drugs — he counsels teenaged addicts, as a matter of fact — and he doesn't mix the biker club with the sex club.
As the night rolls on, Luis asks someone for a pen and jots a note on a napkin. He slips it over to Sandy. The note reads: "Would you like to be my girlfriend? Circle one: yes no maybe."
Sandy lets out a drunken snicker. Then she folds the napkin and gently tears it in half.
Each of the five swingers' clubs in South Florida is geared toward a slightly different demographic and has its own rules and unique characteristics: Miami Velvet, the only swingers' club in Miami-Dade, caters to a young, South Beach crowd. The décor is modern: red and purple walls, velvet couches, and a few cages. Membership costs $200 a year for local couples, and there is a strict dress code.
The Rooftop Resort in Hollywood is a hotel that's especially popular among Europeans. On rare occasions, there is some tension between its mixed clientele of traditional nudists — who often downplay the connection between nudity and sexuality — and swingers, who might have a threesome where the quiet sunbathers normally sit.
Tucked into a wooded stretch of Hillsboro Boulevard in northwest Broward is Deenie's Hideaway, the longest-running on-premises swingers' club in the country. The building is set up like a large house, with social areas downstairs and bedrooms upstairs. The décor is bright and colorful, à la Martha Stewart. It's not rare to find someone napping on a bed or some unopened condoms in the parking lot. (Susan, who prefers Hedonism, calls Deenie's the "truck-stop swingers' club.")
The busiest time at Deenie's is Sunday afternoons, when about 20 couples — and a few single men and even fewer single women — come out to party. Everyone here is in the late-30s-to-early-60s age range. There are toned, tanned business types and plump, relaxed retiree types. They are white, black, Hispanic, and Asian. Today, there are couples playing volleyball in the pool, a few more drinking in the hot tub, and a few men hovering around a supersized grill. Three women talk quietly at the bar. About half the people here are wearing clothes. If you didn't know that a few couples had wandered upstairs — where no clothes are allowed — to have sex with one another, it might seem like a backyard barbecue with a few nudists.
On a recent Sunday, two women in their late 40s, both wearing bikini tops over their surgically enhanced chests, are making out on a deck chair next to the swimming pool. Their respective husbands, each holding a beer, stand about ten feet away, their eyes fixed on the women. Neither man says a word. There are a few colorful tropical drinks painted on a wooden wall behind them beneath the text: "It's 5:00 O'Clock Somewhere."
Anthony, a barrel-chested bald man with tattoos who's wearing a tank top, shorts, and flip-flops, says he's been in the lifestyle since he was 16 years old, when a family friend finagled him into Plato's in New York 30-some years ago. "People come to Deenie's from all over the world," he says. "We just had one couple in here from the Netherlands and another one from Colombia."