“God gave women intuition and femininity. Used properly, the combination easily jumbles the brain of any man I’ve ever met.” Farrah Fawcett
Years of expat life have sharpened my ‘settling in’ skills. I pretty much now have it down when it comes to the priorities of setting up a new home. Right up there with hot, running water and clean sheets, comes the communication trilogy. Phone, Internet & TV. Experience has taught me that it is best to start sorting these things from day one, and as we are hoping to move in by the end of the month, time is a-ticking.
The call was made to We-Take-Your-Money & Sons. Seems they have the best deal on offer, so we asked them to come and ‘hook us up’. What I didn’t bargain for, was a good healthy dose of German discipline. Within minutes, we had an email, an appointment for the next day, and even a time frame of ‘between 1:00pm and 1:27pm’. Hmm all good, I think to myself, although slightly disbelieving.
At exactly 1:19pm the next day, lo and behold I get a call saying “I will be there in 5 minutes”.
I hop on my bike and take off at the speed of custard, peddling for all I am worth. Just as I turn into our new street, I realise that something very important is missing…THE HOUSE KEY. Bugger! Quick U-turn… race back…leaving in my wake, open mouthed people, trying to work out why there is a wide-eyed, red-faced, maniac-cycling ‘almost’ middle aged woman racing down the street and simultaneously muttering very bad words.
Now I feel that first impressions are important. Most people have it all tied up within the first 30 seconds of shaking your hand. So what did I get from The cable guy? He looked like he had just fallen out of bed, his hair could have housed two owls and a family of field mice. There are ‘comfy’ clothes and then there are the clothes that have gathered at the end of the bed and are able to stand up on their own, thus allowing the wearer to simply slip straight out of bed and slide right on into his pants.
Where he really caught my eye, was when he started to scratch his head… he would look at bits of cable, then scratch his head. He would let out a long, low sigh, then scratch his head. As you well know (dear bloggers), I have experience with ‘head scratchers’, having been married to one for over 20 years. The classic male head scratching, is a dead giveaway. It is like a flashing, neon billboard. It means “Holy cow, what has she done this time!!!!”
Words started to tumble out of his mouth, words like…. long cable, no electricty to the amplifer, thick walls, drilling holes in walls, 4-6 hour job………..all the time, scratching, scratching, scratching.
What happened next had to be seen to be believed. Before his bloodshot and bleary eyes, the woman causing his scratching, transformed into a Southern Belle of Steel Magnolia proportions. My usually passable German, dropped an octave, become more whispery and took on a distinct drawl mixed with a dose of Aussie twang. My hip popped out and my shoulders were pulled back. A classic toss of the head and a batter of the eyelashes.
“Please have a little patience with me, my good sir.” Battering those eyelashes and popping that hip for all I was worth. “I am Australian, and I don’t really understand how this all works, but I am sure that a clever and educated man, such as your self, would know all about it.”
He stopped scratching. He started muttering again… “well perhaps… with some help….could pick up drill from xyz…hmmm still 6 hour job…” Two and half hours later, he had drilled through two walls, laid cables throughout the entire cellar and hooked up the phone, the modem for wireless internet and we have cable telly.
I am shameless in my pursuit of internet access. Now you know it. At least he had a great tale to tell his mates when he went to the pub on Friday night.
BTW: The character I relate to the most in Steel Magnolia’s is Ouisa, played be Shirley MacLaine. The scene where she is at the funeral and gets offered up to be slapped, still makes me laugh/cry everytime.