“Cover me with kisses, baby– Blondie
Cover me with love
Roll me in designer sheets
I’ll never get enough”
I never like to count my chickens before they hatch as I had been burnt before when I thought something was a sealed deal. And Alison’s “ambiguous” sleeping arrangements offer technically gave her an out if she changed her mind at the last minute. But it at least gave me a strong indication of where her head was at.
I knew that the first impression, however small, would go a long way. We’d only had the briefest of interactions, so I had to find some token of that meeting to show that I had been attentive.
When I got back to work the next day my colleague Sandy asked me the camp had gone. I told her all the details and she got very excited about Alison and next weekend. It was good to get an outside opinion and we even took a lunch break the next day to go into town to buy the blindfold and the massage oil.
I’d been buzzing with excitement ever since Jeremy called on Sunday, barely able to sleep, thinking about all the fun possibilities for the coming weekend. Then fate delivered one final curve ball. On Wednesday morning I received a phone call from the manager of the Darling Harbour lolly shop that I applied to work at weeks earlier. It was good news; I’d gotten the job. Great but I had to start work on that Saturday afternoon. Again I felt gutted. My very reasonable plans for happiness were continually being blown apart by my need for education, employment and transport.
What was Jeremy going to think if, after driving all the way from Canberra to visit me, I dragged him to my friend’s party and also abandoned him twice on the same weekend so that I could work?
I considered rescheduling for the following weekend but worried that any delay might cause him to change his mind. Suddenly it was all coming apart. In desperation, I immediately called Jeremy at his work. I didn’t know what I would going to do if he said no. I was shaking when he picked up the phone.
“Hello?” he said.
“Jeremy, its Alison.”
“Oh, this is a nice surprise, how are you today?”
“I just found out that I have to work on Saturday afternoon after the party.”
“Do you think that you still want to come up to visit?” I closed my eyes, expecting the worst.
“Yes, of course. That isn’t a problem, I can entertain myself. I know Sydney pretty well.”
For the third time in a week my heart skipped a beat. “G-g-great!”
“Excellent. I’ll leave straight after work. I’ll be there no later than 8pm.”
“I can’t wait.” If only he knew by how much.
During that week, Alison called me at work sounding breathless and flustered. I thought she was having second thoughts and was just about too uninvited me. But it turned out that she was upset because she had just learned that she had to go to work on the Saturday afternoon and that I might now think it was a waste of my time coming all the way to Sydney. I am very familiar with Sydney, so I wasn’t put out in the least. I could easily entertain myself. She was happy when I told her that I still wanted to come and even more so when I told her that I would be leaving Canberra straight after work on Friday afternoon.
Still not daring to dream, I asked what she was doing on Sunday as there was an AFL game on at the Sydney Cricket Ground which was on just next door to her place and maybe we could go and watch together. It helped me test the waters to see if she was happy for me to stay another night after the party. She happily agreed and that is when I finally relaxed.
It was on!