Here’s the thing about good friends: They always make you feel better. Even when you’re more blue than certain parts of the Swedish flag. Which is why I was more than a little happy that I had a dinner date with Zascha, Tina and Emelie in lovely Juelsminde this Friday evening.. Especially after the rather unfortunate turn of events described in an earlier post when I started out my Friday morning by getting turned down for a job I really wanted after an otherwise positive job interview experience on Thursday.
So yeah, long story short, Friday morning was pretty rough but at least I had a bit of a getaway with a couple of lovely young ladies to look forward to later in the day.. Not that getting away was going to be as easy as we expected.. In fact, we ended up having a bit of a Murphy’s Law leaving scenario as Tina, Emelie and I gathered at my house.. Err, mine and Emelie’s house, I suppose.. to pack up our things into Tina’s car and leave for Juelsminde where Zascha was waiting at her parent’s house.
The plan was to leave at exactly 4 PM when both Tina and Emelie had gotten off work and I’d gotten off doing whatever job search related thing it was I was doing on that particular day. And everything was actually well up until around 3:45 when I got a call from Emelie stating that she might run a little late on account of having just poured boiling water all over her hand(!) and the kitchen floor. “Umm, okay,” I told her, “don’t do that, stop acting like me and let me know if you need any help!” – Apparently she didn’t exactly need any help, but the whole experience did set her back a little.. So when Tina arrived 15 minutes later, understandably a little tired and grumpy from a long first week at work, Emelie wasn’t exactly, well, ready to leave.
“I’ll handle this,” I thought and quickly ran outside, jumped into the car with Tina, patted her on the head and told her to just sit tight for a minute while I went and got Emelie.. “But..,” Tina frowned, “I thought we agreed..” – “It’s alright, sweetie,” I shot back, I think she hurt herself or something, I’ll go grab her.” After which I went back to the house, burst into Emelie’s apartment and found her not wearing any pants, then told her not to be too long all while inspecting the ceiling and walls on account of still not quite having figured out where to look when talking to a female friend who happens to not be wearing any pants.
“Is Emelie alright?,” Tina demanded a little nervously when I got back to the car. “Yeah, she’s fine,” I said.. – “Then why didn’t you bring her?,” the little one demanded.. – “Well, she wasn’t wearing any pants,” I said, I figured she’d have objected if I picked her up and carried her off..” – “Gah, women,” muttered Tina.
Some ten minutes later, Emelie was eventually in the car, bags and all and we were just getting ready to pull out of the driveway when my mother pulled into the driveway.. Apparently on a surprise visit to drop off some chairs that her boyfriend had thought I might be able to use for the terrace. We couldn’t well leave without saying hi and chat a little and help her unload the chairs, so we did that as quickly yet politely as we could, then excused ourselves and headed off.. Only some 20 minutes behind schedule.. Go us! We could do a lot better than that, of course, so not long after our departure, we decided to drive into heavy traffic and get stuck there for long enough that we figured we’d better inform Zascha that we were on our way and just happened to enjoy the scenery around Vejle Fjord so much that we figured we’d stop for a while.. Or something to that extend.
At any rate, we actually pretty quickly got our move on again and as such headed on, arriving in fair Juelsminde not TOO long after our planned arrival time. We were greeted, amidst some confusion, by Zascha who was as overworked and tired as the rest of us and her little dog Micha which seemed overly stimulated and slightly overwhelmed by the sudden increase in people. We went inside for a brisk little argument about dinner vis a vis what to eat and who did what in terms of preparation. The end result, as far as the menu went was a bit of a spontaneously thrown together minced beef stew with pasta and a bean salad. As far as preparations went, Zascha and I got to stay back and get things started while Tina and Emelie went to the store to get a few necessities. While the girls trotted off, Zascha and I slumped down in a few chairs, opened up a bottle of red wine I’d brought (some not entirely inexpensive 2003 Italian red), decanted it, had a glass each, swirled it around nice and well, tasted and deemed it borderline fitting for human consumption but definitely on it’s way over the hill. We then got started on dinner, taking another few sips along the way and eventually deemed it not fitting for human consumption after all.. So down the drain the DKK 100+ wine went, only to be replaced by one of similar statue from Zascha’s cellar which was opened, sniffed and deemed more suitable as a replacement for vinegar than for drinking.. Ergh! And so, as Tina and Emelie returned, another wine went down the drain and out of the fridge went the only wine I was reasonably sure wouldn’t be too old, a bottle of 2009 rosé I’d brought for later that evening.
“So, here’s the thing,” we informed the newly arrived ladies.. “We need more wine, seeing as we just poured our entire ration down the drain.” – There was a bit of a mutual sigh at the thought of doing more driving and shopping, but Tina pretty quickly volunteered to drive and I, having done a fair bit of red wine consumption over the years, volunteered to go along and play the role of the wine expert.. So we went to the local supermarket and I did my best to answer Tina’s enquiries about wine including why I generally dislike supermarket wines, what the fancy names on the bottles meant, why the most expensive wine wasn’t necessarily the best and why a wine wasn’t necessarily good just because it had Amarone written on it.. All while we picked out a few bottles of Ripasso and a magnum bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon.
We then drove back home and allowed Zascha the choice between the wines at which she, with no particular element of surprise nearly tore the Ripassos out of my hands in order to get a glass.. Thus finally, after much ado about nothing – and a few bottles of wine – we were finally ready to all sit down and enjoy our Friday night dinner and our two bottles of wine.. And what a dinner it was, the talk and wine flowed freely and everybody seemed to be enjoying themselves, even the dog which was in a bit of a weird mood that evening, put it that way.
After dinner and some more wine, we retreated to the living room with some more wine and a laptop for musical entertainment. By this time of the evening, things were starting to get a little silly egged on by Tina and Emelie who were both very tired and quite tipsy, as well as me who just enjoys a good time. Topics covered included everything from children’s TV and Harry Potter over anal sex and Elvis Costello to the differences in music tradition in the nordic countries.. As I recall there was even some talk between Emelie and I about integration versus assimilation of ethnic minorities in modern day society which was rudely interrupted by the adorably tipsy Tina who at some point decided to just nudge us and go “Pfft! You’s all serious like! Stop that!” – which ended that discussion and spawned a new one about why Wagner was a more natural choice of wedding music within certain circles of the European monarchy.. Which didn’t get very far either, but did prompt Tina to look at me with her wide blue eyes and mutter something along the lines of “You really do know everything.. Why do you know everything? It’s scary!
By this time of the evening, a bottle of Cava had hit the table and things were starting to spin a little out of control. All of us were making statements which made no sense at all as well as terrorizing Facebook and unsuspecting friends with messages containing fragments of our conversation. We should have probably taken that as a pointer to slow down or even cease drinking all together and go to bed.. But rather, for whatever reason, we took it as an indication to open up another bottle of wine. Go figure. Which sent things completely over the top. Zascha got tired and I got confused while, on the other hand, Tina and Emelie got reduced to a pair of giggling school girls who were both just giggling and chirping along with one another with no real sense of purpose and direction.. As with most things they do, it was rather adorable, but also rather weird and incoherent at the same time.
Adding to this the fact that the dog had also slipped into a psycho state of mind and was sorta laying around growling and barking at us, we decided that it may well be time to just pack up, head upstairs and go to bed. And so we did, well, Zascha and I sent the other girls up first to get ready for bed and get over themselves and their giggling while we cleared the table downstairs and got the house ready for bed.. We figured that by the time we’d finished, the dog would have calmed down and the other girls would have gone quiet and gone to bed.. Well, not quite so.. As we’d finished up and I was in the bathroom Zascha called out to tell me that the dog was still being psychotic and that she didn’t dare to go up the stairs. I told her to wait for me and then went out, staggering lazily and slightly drunk towards the dog, drawing it’s attention while Zascha climbed over the railing and up the stairs. I then walked, rather quietly and untouched by the situation, I’ve been told, up the stairs with the dog barking and snapping at me in my wake until it hit an obstacle built on the stairs to keep it from heading further on up.
Zascha and I rendez-vouzed on the top of the stairs where we bumped into Tina and Emelie who had obviously been in the process of undressing and getting ready for bed but had then, somehow, suddenly stopped and fallen right into their old ritual of giggling and chatting about everything and nothing. We told them nicely but firmly to get their cute little asses in bed and to stay there and be quiet, then each went to our separate rooms to catch some sleep.. Or in my case to do some reading.
I made it through all of two pages of Black Like Me before I was rudely interrupted by giggling and loud girlish voices coming from the master bedroom.. “Oh for the love of..,” I thought and opened my bedroom door, yelling across the hall “Would you keep it down in there, some of us are trying to spend a civilized Friday night reading!” – “JOHAN!! SHUT THE FUCK UP AND GO TO BED!” – came an angry shrill voice from Zascha’s bedroom.. – “But.. it’s not..,” I tried to counter until Zascha ended the discussion with a “JOHAN! BED! NOW!” in a manner only she can muster.. “Alright, fine,” I muttered to myself, closing the door and heading to bed..
What a lovely day.. And what a weird end to it.. But hey, I’d forgotten all about being upset about the job situation.. Thank you, ladies.