This is a lazy day. Transatlantic telephone calls are made, caramel rolls are eaten, television is watched. An American sporting afternoon is to be had. The putt putt is full of devious curves and metal gates. The challengers line them up, and sink them... eventually. I win. (I always win). The batting cages are netted/protected and full of American youths, gloved and helmeted, smiting fast pitched baseballs into the netting. A swing and a miss. A swing and a miss. A swing and a glancing blow. Then a connect, the ball swishing back over the machinery that spits them out rapidfire. This is how Babe Ruth and Albert Pujols feel. I am the winner. That ball is told. The blue water fountains sploosh past the fibreglass fairytale turreted princess castle and the tree with a house inside. Every mini golf course must have them. Otherwise they take the rubber putters away. It's all in the legislation. Check if you don't believe me.
Where's the Hollywood explosions? Not here in this suburb. Low budget film and we are on set. If only I had the motivation I could act and I could organise. Jessia does her kissing scene. Twice. In the mouth. Tensions are high- joking around on set makes it all take longer. What a bunch of amateurs. Conner rides triathlons- he's got the build. Piles of clothes are gathered on the floor, ready for the thrift store. Me and Sophie vulture circle and make off with our purchases.
In this town the churches all look like convention centres- glass and brick hulks without spires or crosses- just fields of regimented car parking, ready for the pious and pretending come Sunday morning. One must keep the Sabbath holy. These arenas with headsetted preachers, concert seating and hotdog vendors and hymn books. Facebook flirting is never a good idea, and now how are you supposed to keep yourself pure for marriage? Keep it in your pants, boy, you'll only get diseases. Us old couples, we get competitive in the presence of others- a game of one upmanship in sly barracking and corrections. There will only be one winner. And as the sweat drips from my brow, my bones vibrate with ball smacking, resonance and the yellow sphere goes tumbling back the way it came, in a country nearly conquered where I own the roads, the winner is me.
We're going to the zoo, zoo, zoo. You can't come. The authorities know what you did last time, boy. There is talk of furries- screwball sex perverts. Is it bestiality? She came so far and all she wants is to talk of marriage and coo over the kitties. There is no sense of who she is. Most of the animals sleep- bar the monkeys. They crouch down and examine themselves, licking off the juices. Stingrays are slipsliding by, splashing their wings and opening divided mouths to hoover up fish heads. Tailwhips swim by, sanitised and domesticated with stingers removed. Child friendly rays- I want my frisson of danger back. Open all the cages and let's have a safari. Bring the car and wind down the windows. Lions hunting wildebeest on a giraffe covered savannah. Flamingos taking flight as crocodiles snap at their twig thin model legs.
Passing flirtations are dark galleons in the night. anything to avoid falling into that deep black (blacker) pool as I cling to the wet rocks above, a small ragged opening somewhere above creeper hung and white bright with early morning rays. I flee because I always flee when I feel awkward. "Night." The galleons are fading back into the mist.
Gareth is singing my song tonight- we dance and we dance and we double handclap and we dance. Aleks needs to eat some good. "You could juice lemons on her shoulders"- (c) Sophie Driscoll 2009. They are so wry and indie, the scenesters snarf under their big glasses, denim cut off shorts and baggy T shirts. They are beautiful, they are doomed. The guitars spiral just that bit out of kilter, before the drums bring them back under the beat and the violin wheels, glockenspiel twinkles and that is that; the Los Campesinos! kerfuffle, endorphins rush with the ears the wrong side of fuzzy on a post gig high. We drove through ghettoes to get here, tumbledown projects half gone and nobody cares. Blissful cruise home, the nighttime wind blasting my face and I can't hear anything any more. Then we try to spy shooting stars and discourse and drinks and so so tired that we are asleep like a Beatrix Potter book before our heads hit the pillow.