Monday, October 02, 2006

Welsh Rare Break


The moment I stepped through the wide glass doors I knew I'd come home. There was an initial shyness, a slight awkwardness on my part, unable to look my old friends squarely in the eye, knowing it was me that had forced the separation. I needn't have worried for I was soon swept in as if I'd never been away. There was no cool reception, no accusative looks, no chastisement just the warm, genuine greeting of an old friend who is happy to see you no matter how long it has been or whose turn it was to call last. I'd made my peace with the department store.

I wasted no time, quickly moving around the shiny counters, anxious not to overlook anything but frequently distracted by the sight of a Bonus Gift or New Arrival. I searched but Guerlain wasn't there. I'd planned on telling her Carmentza had scent me. I was overwhelmed at first, unable to hold a conversation beyond the initial pleasantries but once I'd settled down I started to answer more confidently, " I'll be paying by Debit Card, there's no need to gift wrap".

I didn't go mad, tempted as I was by the Armani sunglasses, the Cherry Chau hair accessories and the Mulberry handbags. A modest purchase from Molton Brown ( Jack uses it too and it lasts for ages so it's not really extravagant), a make-up top-up from Clinique, which came with an 8 piece free gift - a girl can never have too many bags, even if they are only wash or make-up ones, rounded off with some new lingerie. Lingerie sounds better than Sports Bra. I went for the premium teflon-coated anti-bounce range designed for better performance. It cost so much I can only imagine it was built with aeronautical technology. Reports in the Evening Telegraph of dual-nosed Concorde phantom planes are sure to follow my next training sessions.

We caught the Willard Wigan exhibition while we waited for our cheesecake and lattes to arrive and then stocked up with fresh anchovies, salad and the final word in decadence, a 12 quid loaf of bread, or at least a quarter of a loaf of Poilane.

Sunday dawned bright, the stillness broken only by the rhythmic lapping of the waves in the bay and the excited calls of the many birds feeding on the exposed kelp-strewn rocks. I bounded out of bed. A most uncommon occurrence and one which really would have benefitted by an advance wearing of my new foundation garments. I was back with fresh milk and the papers 20 minutes later and after a leisurely breakfast we headed out to walk along the vast wind-swept beaches, admire the magnificent views, of neoprene-clad kite-surfers performing acrobatics atop the breaking waves.

24 hours away with a girlfriend had a far more beneficial effect than the sum of its parts. We talked about everything and nothing. She gave me a bit of a pep talk about not putting myself down so much but soon moved on to preferable topics, like her forthcoming wedding and the growth of her property empire and the fact that she won't tolerate disrespectful behaviour or flirtation of any degree from her boyfriend, something she learnt the hard way in the past and then we passed the slow journey back to Halifax by singing along to the radio. A roast dinner was waiting for us at the other end rustled up on cue by her perfect partner.

It's the third time I've been away with them in less than a year, although the first time for just Loll and I. We may well do it again in November and more than likely at New Year. Is it a coincidence that out of all their combined friends I am the only one to have been invited once, let alone on further occasions? Or am I just the most unattractive and least threatening of the lot?

17 Comments:

Blogger Melora said...

Sounds lovely -- shopping and scenery with a friend! I need that.
I'm sure it is your sweet nature, charm, and wit.

11:57 pm  
Blogger Frontier Editor said...

My word! Someone else who likes anchovies! >B^D>

12:11 am  
Blogger ziggi said...

:) he's not your type then?
I expect you're invited because you're the nicest and most fun!

9:42 am  
Blogger Joyce said...

You have outdone yourself this time!! You had me laughing out loud at 7:30 am, to the background sounds of kids tv. The bra description is a keeper! Whenever I go "lingerie" shopping, all I notice is how lefty is bigger than righty, and how entirely much loose skin there is....... even aeronautical design hasn't caught up to these pressing issues!
LOVE your writing.

1:38 pm  
Anonymous Sharon J said...

I want to go somewhere with a girlfriend now. Plans need to be laid!

Everytime I buy a new bra I discover that my boobs have got smaller. If they carry on at this rate they'll soon be craters!

3:24 pm  
Blogger delcatto said...

I hope you are refreshed, reinvigorated and retailed back to good health.
Nothing like fresh air,exercise, good food and drink all in the company of friends.
Did you fly a kite tho'?

4:23 pm  
Blogger Cherry Rolfe said...

Sounds more like you are her most fun-to-be-with, but humble, chum! It all sounds wonderful - I am so glad you feel refreshed. I am doing a Thelma and Louise in November and expect to laugh my socks off having Big Fun from Norfolk to Cornwall, as only girlfriends can!

5:04 pm  
Anonymous cream said...

Another breezy weekend, eh, Cherrybabe!
I was listening to Radio 5 and the latest about your neck of the woods is a Darts Academy above a pub! Is that for jealous girlfriends?

8:45 pm  
Blogger Carmenzta said...

Cherry, Your 24 hours away sounds dreamy,especially the shopping part! I know that you will one day find "Insolence" by Guerlain and then you will know in that instant what I was raving about! I have a little sample my friend at the fragrance counter gave me, I'll mail it to you if you like.

9:35 pm  
Blogger homo escapeons said...

HAHAHAHA Boy did you sucker punch me with that first paragraph.

Let me guess the name of the beach is something like WHLLWHYKSSSYWENNMWNHEMCSSSLL which is of course Welsh for sandy.

Had to put that little jab in at the end eh? Honestly. I agree with ziggi, you keep getting invited back because YOU are the most fun.

9:51 pm  
Blogger Cherrypie said...

Melora - I think I'd enjoy stacking logs in your garden just as much

FE - and rollmops

Ziggi - ne, he's not but that is a good thing

Joyce - you make me laugh and cry so you win the prize x

Sharon - you can bet if I manage to shift any weight, it will all go from my chest and stay til the bitter end around my hips

Del - I would have loved to have had a go with one of those kites. Or kite-surfers. Either would have been a thrill.

Cherry - that road trip sounds great fun. Let me know if you've room in the back for one more. Like the new animated avatar.

Cream - *groan* no wonder it has such a bad image

Carmentza, you lovely thing. I couldn't possibly take your perfume sample but thank you for offering. I will make a concerted effort to track some down and try it myself

10:03 pm  
Blogger Cherrypie said...

HE - your Cymru command is suspiciously good. Are you sure you don't have a touch of the valleys in your blood?

10:13 pm  
Blogger Within Without said...

No, Cherry Pie, HE's family hails from Belgium or some tiny nation like that, smaller than some of those Welsh words.

So how much did you spend?

1:50 am  
Blogger kj said...

ok cp, no more self putdowns. it's inappropriate. it's not allowed for the next 12 months. if you fail, you may be ironing for andrea and me indefinately.

about your writing: it rocks! homeo escapeans is right about the suckerpunch: you do that with such skill and sneaky innocence....

:)

3:37 am  
Blogger homo escapeons said...

I have a touch of something..wait allow me to show off a bit in Cymru..
"LLAN FAIRR WILLGWYWGWYNG YLLGOGGERY GHW RNDDROBW LLL ANTY SILI OGGOGO CYN!"

..which loosely translated means
"True Dat, Word to your Mutha!"

4:50 pm  
Blogger Cherrypie said...

WW - I haven't added it up but less than 150 pounds ( my pound sign has vanished - I suspect it may have eloped with my sunglasses) including lunch.

KJ - no! Not the ironing. Anything but the ironing.

HE - Yakkida, Boyo x

11:22 pm  
Blogger Mise said...

I know Poilane is heavy, but 12 quid for a loaf? ... I hope it came with the baker!

I see neoprene featured again ...hmmmm!

7:57 am  

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