Monday, May 28, 2012

Fizzy Water & the Triple Kiss

Standing atop the Frankfurt Main Tower,
Frankfurt, Germany May -2012
“Madam, would you care for water?” asks the waiter with a heavy German accent.
“Yes, please” I reply (the humidity is taking my breath away and my 12 hour deodorant is calling for a generator back up).
“Fizzy or Flat?” he asks politely
“Tap? With ice?” I respond (teetering precariously on my sustainable soapbox that I have brought with me from Canada)

The waiter returns with a teeny, tiny glass (the kind in which restaurants serve freshly squeezed orange juice) and a glass bottle of water. He uncaps the lid and pours me about 2 oz of water (1/2 of the teeny, tiny glass), sets the bottle down with the flourish of someone serving the finest Pinot Noir and slips away.

At this point a droplet of sweat has escaped my neckline and is now trickling down my back. Eyeing the bottle piously (I had requested tap water) I consider calling the waiter back, but hey…..the bottle is already opened! (I lose my footing on    the sustainability soapbox and fall off)

Grasping the glass with both hands I drink, gulping….heavens to Betsy it tastes good!

14 miniature glasses of bottled flat water later, my internal fluid levels have returned to normal. By my mathematical calculations, I have taken in more fluid than is leaking out and my brain function is now fully functional.

I begin to reflect.

Here I was….miles from home, sitting in an open air restaurant in Frankfurt, Germany with a group of friends and work colleagues.

My first transatlantic crossing evah! To be fair….they say we flew over the polar ice cap, but hey….it’s my story and transatlantic sounds much more glamorous.

The trip had not been without it’s {cough} issues. The first bump in the proverbial road (or is it the first proverbial bump in the road....which one?) came in Calgary as we all sat waiting to board the aircraft.

“Attention Ladies and Gentlemen” crackled the loudspeaker “We regret to inform you that we are having some difficulties with the in-flight entertainment system. Our engineers are working on it, but we may have to depart without it fully functional. We apologize for any inconvenience that this may  cause. If you would like to purchase a magazine or other reading material, there is time to do so before we board the aircraft”.

Then they repeated it in French.

We (all of us sitting in the boarding area heard it as) “Yo Passengers! The TV is super broken on the plane, and no….no one is actually working on it cuz it’s real broke, like blue screen of death broke. We have tried control+alt+delete, but it didn’t work so we will be flying 9.5 hours without it. Yep! No movies, no music, no television programs…..nada, nil, nothing. You will be really bored, and honestly…. you will have that single magazine read before we begin our in-flight food service, so perhaps save your money and use it to purchase more booze. Yeah….we know it sucks”.


Which brings me to this moment, sitting in the restaurant, trying to look like I belong when I so clearly do not. The jaunty blue scarf, tied at my neck that looked so European that morning, now appeared wilted and damp; high heels had been abandoned for flip flops; my makeup a distant memory in the high humidity. 

We get up to leave.

“So nice to see you again Judy” states G, a friend from Barcelona and he leans in for “the kisses”. (Insert haunting strains of banjo music here as I begin to completely over-think the situation)

  1. Will we start on the right or the left cheek?
  2. Who initiates? (always have trouble with that one)
  3. Do you hang on for the kiss? Do you embrace or is it more like one of those little ‘chickens that pick up the toothpick situation’ – do you both “bob in” for the kiss, arms at your side?
  4. Would it be two kisses or (as I had seen recently) the kiss “trifecta”?
  5. Will I fumble? If he does go for the third kiss and I am not prepared, it can change from an elegant goodbye to something more akin to a bad first date.
I lean in and we kiss right cheeks (so far so good), pulling back slightly we go to the left (almost done) and then pulling away….I hesitate ever so slightly in preparation for the rogue third kiss. Wait for it…wait for it….no! It was not to be. G is a traditionalist and a double kiss kind of fellow. My hesitation went unnoticed (thank goodness).

Whew! I glance around. My friends were laughing and smiling and for once it wasn’t about me. I was fitting in!

Over the next couple of days I mastered the double and triple kiss and by the time I arrived home safely in Canada I felt so damn European!

The next time we meet….I just might lean in for a kiss!

Maybe even attempt a quad!



Eldoren said... really shoudl write comedy. That story is so very funny! Nice work Judy!

The Green-Eyed Event Planner said...

Thanks Gord! I really appreciate that :)