March 30th, 1990
Driving home from Ben’s this morning, I expected to be greeted with the wrath of mum.
“Is that you, Karen?” She called from upstairs.
“Yes, mum. Morning. Do you want a cup of tea?”
“Aye, put the kettle on, I’ll be down in a wee minute.”
We sat at the kitchen table for ages, drinking tea, eating toast and generally having a nice conversation. I kept expecting mum to get onto me about Ben but she was much too interested in what I plan on doing in New York tomorrow.
“I might see Christopher but I haven’t had a chance to let him know I’m going.”
“Aye and you can have a wee chat to David.”
“I don’t know what time he’s leaving for Delhi but yeah, hopefully I’ll catch him before he goes.”
“I was thinking of making a nice dinner , dad was saying last night he’s no seen much of you recently.”
“Actually, ehm, I’ve already arranged to meet Ben when he finishes work.”
Wait for it.
“Oh alright then,” she continued. “Maybe dad will still be up when you come in. Or he’ll see you tomorrow before you leave.”
And that was it! Who is this woman and what have you done with my Mother?
Ben and I went back to Stony Stratford, this time to our favourite Indian restaurant. We ordered far too much food and were halfway through our drinks when he said, “Mandy got offered a job in this area.”
“Is she taking it?”
“I told her not to.”
“Why?” I asked.
“Why do you think?”
“I imagine because you don’t want her around, which makes no sense if she’s your girlfriend.”
“If I get into Virgin Atlantic,” he said, shrugging his shoulders, “I’ll be away all the time, like you.”
“That’s true, doesn’t make sense for her to leave everything behind only to move here and have you gone all the time.”
“Exactly. So, New York tomorrow?”
“Saturday night in the big apple,” he smiled.
“I can’t wait!”
“What will you be doing? Apart from spending hours on the phone with lover boy.”
“Why do you call him that?” I asked. “His name is David.”
“Probably the same reason you call Mandy whatsherface.”
“Not anymore I don’t, it’s not nice,” I lied.
He laughed. “Ok, we’ll see about that.”
“Actually, you know what?”
“What?” he asked.
I was about to go on about Mandy and how he treats her and blah, blah, blah but the last onion bhaji looked lonely on the plate and I just wanted to eat and not talk anymore.
“I love Indian food,” I said and popped a piece of bhaji in my mouth.
“That’s not what you were about to say.”
“Is so,” I mumbled.
“Somehow I doubt it.”
“Doubt all you want,” I said, tearing off a hunk of naan bread, “I love Indian food.”