Monthly Archives: June 2015

The Gown

I knew from Sarah’s desperate call that the situation was urgent.
“Tom, has it arrived or not?”
“Yes, the courier’s just been.”
“Right, let’s just hope it fits. We have to be there for seven!”
The Chairman’s annual dinner dance is the highlight of our social calendar (the other important dates being Christmas and my Mum coming for Sunday tea) so what to wear is a stress known only to the fairer sex. I on the other hand have no such conundrum, needing only to dust down my penguin suit (Although sometimes the previous twelve month’s over-indulgence can result in a fight to the death with the trousers).
So my problems were as nothing compared to Sarah’s. Rushing in from work, she ran upstairs to our bedroom, where on the bed lay her nemesis – the ball gown. I was half way up the stairs when an ear-piercing scream froze me to the spot.
I burst in to see my beloved stuck inside an oversized merengue.
“They’ve sent the wrong dress!”
Immediately I went into damage limitation mode. “It’s not too bad. Here, can I pin it?”
“Since when did you become a seamstress? It’s ok, I’ll just wear the black one. Thank goodness you never stuck it on eBay.”
My grimace gave it away. “…Tom?”
“If it’s any consolation, My feedback score is excellent.”
Right well that’s it. I’m not going. I can’t go.”
“I’ll tell you what, let’s ask our daughter.”
I shouted Hannah, our sassy, fifteen year old fashionista. My eyes bored into her as I nodded furiously and said,
“Doesn’t that dress look lovely on your Mum?”
Hannah, glancing up momentarily from her smart phone, took one look at her Mother and said, “Have you not got anything else? What about that black one?”
Dragging the Apple of my Eye out onto the landing I said,
“Word of advice, don’t ever apply to be a diplomat, will you?”
As Hannah rolled her eyes I heard Sarah call from the bedroom. “Right that’s it. I’m not going, you can go on your own.”
Disaster loomed. I had to think quick.
“Look, let’s see what Debi says.”
Debi was Sarah’s best friend and my last hope. Hurriedly, I took some pictures.
“You could at least smile darling.”
“Listen David Bailey, there isn’t time.”
With Sarah in the bathroom, I seized my chance as Debi’s messages pinged through. “Sorry hon, that dress is awful!” (delete) “Is there nothing else? What about that gorgeous black -” (delete).
Beep! The taxi arrived. Bustling Sarah into the back of the cab, I handed over her phone.
“Debi hasn’t replied, but I’m sure she loved it.”
Outside the hotel, Sarah made a final adjustment to her dress as she looked me up and down.
“Have those trousers shrunk or something?”
“Let’s just go in shall we?”
Shuffling into the lobby, we were greeted by a glitter ball on legs – The Chairman’s Wife.
“Mrs Hughes, don’t you look…nice?”
“There you go, she loves it.” I whispered through my fixed grin.
“You’ve a lot to learn about women.” Replied Sarah through gritted teeth.
The night wore on. We danced and drank our way through it. Eventually it was late enough to make our excuses and leave. Sarah poured me into the taxi and we headed home.
“Be honest. Do I really look nice?”
“You look absolootelee dee-vine dahling (hic!) and I down care what Debi said.”
“Why, what did she say? You said she didn’t reply. Tom?”
Then, our chauffeur, a skinny young man with a pierced nose decided to chip in with his two penneth. “Take no notice love, my wife has the exact same dress and it looks great on her. Mind you, hers isn’t white, it’s bla-”
“Just here thank you!” Testily, I cut him dead.
Sipping coffee in the kitchen, I saw Sarah busy on my phone.
“What are you doing?”
Im just ordering myself a new LBD online. It’s a bargain, only £200. And isn’t PayPal so convenient?”
“But you haven’t got a PayPal account.”
“I know. But you have.”
And so, the wheels of married life turn endlessly onwards….