Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Chicago Blues...Makes Me So Very Happy
Green Eyed Man was in Atlanta all last week on a conference, which I think contributed to the fact that I spent far too much time deliberating the nuances of my own wounded soul and whether or not this was all just a spectacular waste of time.
I spent the week musing on whether or not he was tempted to shag any of the other delegates he had told me about over the phone - and wondering how I would really feel about it if he did. The sabotage in me almost felt like encouraging him to take advantage of the opportunity. And the fact that I am struggling to control the impetus to act like an insecure, petulant teenager rather than a mature woman in her 40s tells me quite plainly that I like him a lot more than I really want to let on. Why can't I ever just go with the flow and let things be abundantly simple? Is it really this necessary to complicate something so nice in my life right now?
Anyway, we planned to go to the movies on Saturday night. I spent the whole day in eager anticipation of seeing him again, so for once I appear to glide through the maelstrom of sports class, followed by play date, followed by lil'kickers football trial, followed by play date and rounding off with a couple of hours at a pumpkin decorating party.
I am always reminded of how very British and un-American I am when I turn up at a party. I turn up with a few beers and a donation of chocolate. Everyone else turns up with substantial homemade contributions of food to share and several pumpkins. Even after 9 years of being here it hadn't even occurred to me to turn up with a batch of fresh pumpkin brownies or a cobbled together chilli. It's times like this that I feel I will never really fit in to the American way of doing things and that I am such a slacker where socialising is concerned in this culture.
The boys harang me to decorate 'their' pumpkin and I am at a bit of a loss because a full grown pumpkin isn't something that I can magic out of my arse. Luckily one of the other guests donates one of their finer looking specimens, which means I am now stuck with having to carve a pumpkin for the first time in my life and truly stand out like the proverbial sore thumb. I am already one martini down at this point and not feeling in an optimum state to be wielding a sharp implement. Everyone else is attacking their huge orange vegetable with gusto and ease so I make a few half hearted stabs before the boys lose all interest and go off to whack a pinata with huge sticks. As is the case with every other pinata we have encountered, this one appears to be fashioned from solid concrete instead of paper mache and refuses to yield a single treat despite the enthusiastic barrage from several broom handles. Ultimately, after a couple of hours or so, I am exhausted from gouging triangular shapes into an unyielding giant squash and the boys have arms like noodles from attacking an inanimate object with sticks. We are both rescued by dads with superior knife / hacksaw abilities and finally venture home armed with our first carved pumpkin and a couple of bags full of crap sweets.
By the time the boys are in bed I am exhausted by my efforts at being supermum all day and am thankful that I am going to be spending the next couple of hours sitting in a dark cinema troughing popcorn to my heart's content.
Only that's not how our date turned out. Timekeeping is not Green Eyed Man's speciality and by the time we get to the cinema the show is sold out. I instantly revert back to full-blown teenager mode and go into a pubescent sulk of magnificent proportions, which he refuses to acknowledge and rise to. And of course I am thankful that one of us at least can maintain the dignity and charm of a full grown adult but nonetheless it only serves to irritate me further. Stop being so bloody perfect will you, I fume internally, and just get with the programme of acknowledging that I am a supremely immature and rude spoilt bitch who is a pain in the backside to be with?
He suggests we go to a Blues Club instead, which makes me perk up just a little. Despite having lived in the home of Blues for several years I haven't actually ventured to any of the clubs before, thinking that it's just not my type of music. But I factor in that it will be dark, they serve alcohol and as I still feel too tired to be capable of stimulating conversation the music could be a convenient distraction.
Once there, my energy levels lift. The music is amazing. My Margarita is perfectly sour and refreshing. We hold hands across the table and smile at each other a lot. And then he pulls me up to dance in the small space in front of the stage and the rest of the world fades into a blur as he moves me with supreme control and confidence to the music. I grin like a maniacal idiot and feel so insanely happy to be with this man that I could self-combust.
On our way home GEM confides 'I got you a present from Atlanta'. Oh, I think nervously, slightly worried that my bubble was about to burst upon presentation of an unattractive cap with 'I Love Atlanta' embroidered across it. He hands me a book: Half The Sky - turning oppression into opportunity for women worldwide. It is not what I am expecting and I am stunned into silence and could quite easily burst into tears. If there is any demonstration that this guy really gets me, this is it. It is a beautiful book and tackles one of the subjects that I feel most passionately about. It is hands down one of the most thoughtful and insightful gifts I have ever received.
I have to be careful not to speak. Because the only words on the tip of my tongue are...Fuck, I think I might be falling in love with you. And that is way too scary to even contemplate.