One year ago, I traveled back to the only place I've lived where I really felt a deep connection and belonging - Melbourne. And if you haven't been reading my
crap blog for the last 2 years, I should fill you in on some of the back-story from my time there.
It goes a little something like this...
So, needless to say, I have had a somewhat "strained" relationship with those host parents. This is something I've always been a little sad about, since they were/are good people and we got along famously... until they learned I was sleeping with their son. Sometimes, I think the whole thing got blown way out of proportion, because, really, they should have been proud their son snagged a catch like me.
But I digress.
I arranged to have a reunion dinner with my student counselor, who happens to be an incredible smart ass, inappropriate man-child, but is also a close friend of said host parents. I thought I would extend an olive branch and invite them as well. I knew they'd HATE to have to sit through a dinner with me, but what can I say? I really do like them no matter what they think of me, after all, they're Jim's parents... and I'm a masochist.
Then cancelled again.
Then finally accepted.
See? Tormented. I loved every minute of it.
They arrived almost exactly when I did. The handshakes were deliciously awkward, although I was genuinely excited to see them. The husband looked annoyed, but he often looked like that, so I couldn't be sure if it was caused entirely by my presence.
My counselor was late. Always.
The small talk was fine, mostly because I love talking about myself.. ummm.. hello! It was rather enjoyable on yet another level because Jim and I had arranged to see each other the following day, but didn't want his parents to know.
AFTER ALL THIS TIME. FUCKING HELL, IT WAS GREAT.
I am a dirty, dirty secret.
Finally, my counselor arrived and the rest of dinner went smoothly... like sliding slowly on my stomach over cracking ice to which at any second I could fall through to my freezing death. It had been more than a decade, but even so, I could see the wife stabbing me with subliminal knifes in between bites of her chicken. Would we ever be able to relax and joke about all this someday? Well, if a decade hadn't healed this wound, then not bloody likely. They didn't waste any time after dinner was over and after paying with a "Buy one, get one free" coupon, they left immediately.
My counselor and I moved to the patio for some further drinks, and to recap this bizarre evening.
"Fuck! That was wild! I thought she was going to lunge across the table and strangle me." I giggled with relief between sips of my rum and Coke, "I still can't believe they actually showed up."
He was grinning from ear to ear as he explained, "That's nothing, sugar tits! I was on time, but I waited in the car park and texted him that I wasn't coming at all, just to see him fucking squirm for 20 minutes!"
We both laughed like obnoxious hyenas for a good while and then finally calmed down. He focused on me again and said affectionately, "Darling, it's fabulous to see you again. I've missed you, babe!"
"You are a fucking shit disturber, but ridiculously out of control!" I was still in shock after learning the stunt he had just pulled... and in total awe, I concluded, "I've missed you too. So much."