Sunday, January 31, 2010

Silence on a Sunday

Everyone breaches the Fair Trading Act when they're dating. C and I went rollerblading on our first date and haven't been since. I probably told lies "I like nothing better than cooking five lamb chops, mashed spuds and boiling up some frozen peas - heaven!" And worst of all, he pretended to be interested when I read him snippets from the Sunday paper.

Sharing or not sharing fascinating tidbits from the Sunday paper is the simplest way of describing, defining and dividing people. Male, female, gay, straight, old, young - all stale and irrelevant classifications. Either you read aloud from the paper or you don't. I do, C doesn't. Dad does, Mum doesn't. The non- readers hate being read to, the readers hate not being listened to. It's a miracle that relationships between what are essentially different species survive.

Just this morning, I made a new vow (one I break and re-make most Sundays) not to disturb C by sharing the paper. I made it all the way to the entertainment section. That, for a speed reader like me, is a good 5 minutes of silent, non-sharing. Practically a lifetime. Then I saw ads for at least 3 concerts I want to go to and I could contain myself no longer:

Me: "James Taylor, The Winery Tour of Bic Runga, Dave Dobbyn and Tim Finn, Dianna Krall - why so many concerts I want to go to when my priority has to be saving for a clothesline?"
He: Hmmph.
Me: "I'm so proud of the way I'm controlling my spending and saving. I'm really starting to grow up and mature into a truly responsible person."
He: Mmm.

And then I turned the page. Full page ad. One Night Only. Whitney Houston. Live in New Plymouth. OMG. I have to go. Screw the clothesline.

I'm especially fond of New Plymouth given our last concert experience there. Full page ad. One Night Only. Elton John. Live in New Plymouth.

I booked the seats late and flew direct so the cost was horrendous - about $1500 bucks. Upgraded to good seats - $300+ each. Accommodation, taxis, dinner, babysitter - all up, it was looking like a $2500 24 hour mini-break. But Elton John? Come on - the man's a musical genius and so many sparkly costumes - heaven!

Until it rained. And rained, and rained. New Plymouth was absolutely freezing. From the moment we arrived and the mountain was ominously shrouded in cloud I knew bad things were ahead.

Me: "Good thing I brought my jacket."
He: "Won't the stadium be warm anyway? I didn't think I'd need one."
Me: "It's an outside concert darling. Remember me telling you that on Sunday morning as I read the details aloud from the paper?"

A visit to Kathmandu to purchase $2 ponchos didn't help matters. Town was teeming with older folk (EJ's target market) in every manner of ski suits, oilskins, and wet weather gear.

He: "It's very cold isn't it? And wet."

We called a taxi and, dressed in everything we had packed, ventured out into the storm. While we waited C hesitantly suggested that as he didn't really do wet and cold and didn't really like Elton John that much and wouldn't be such great company perhaps he should stay in our hotel room and watch Coronation Street. "Why don't you come along, and if it gets too cold you can always come back early?" As we climb into the taxi, united together as only people engaged to be married with three children between them can be, C suddenly stops and declares, "I can't do it."

I remarked to the people around me at the Bowl of Brooklands, "I know who the empty seat on my right belongs to, my brave and fearless fiance, but who owns the one on my left?" "Our friend Natasha" the couple one seat over said. "She's just getting hot chocolates." And then I saw her. Possibly the largest woman New Plymouth has ever seen was making her way up the aisle towards me. I'd like to say she sat next to me but in truth she sat on me. Her legs spilled over her seat, her arms spilled over her seat - her flesh was one with mine. God Bless Her. By half time, at -1 degrees we had become firm friends. I nestled into her snuggly buggly warmth and asked her if she would mind me reading aloud to her from the paper on Sunday mornings.

Was I angry with C with my friends wanted to know. Absolutely not. I love people who know their minds, who don't put themselves in positions they know they'll hate just to please others. That kind of carry-on might just cause cancer. Which is why, if I do go to Whitney Houston, I'll be pleasing myself and going alone.


Kyla said...

OMGosh - I'm SO there with you. We HAVE to go.

Poppa Bear said...

Why these mega stars end up in New Plymouth is beyond belief. It's just so far to go and expensive to get there just to take a chance on the weather anyway. Has it got an airport? Doesn't anyone tell them just where New Plymouth is in relation to where most of the population live - like Auckland.
James Taylor got it right..he's in Auckland in a stadium under cover. No huge travel costs for(for most of the population)no worries about the weather. Why would you bother?