I can live through most emotion evoking situations, but cringe-worthy situations have me heading for the hills. And for that reason alone I like to be fully in-control of my inner-self, which is pretty easy when you consider I was born into the stiff-upper lip British brigade.
But sometimes I get it all wrong, and worst yet the realization of doing something so stupid that cringe-worthy is a kind descriptor, will come back to haunt me absolutely years later. Even now while I’m thinking about what I’m about to divulge, I can feel my body rolling into a classic ball of embarrassment, while my face is contorting with pain. I’m starting to perspire as well, but I’m writing that off as a peri-menopausal symptom.
Picture this, Menlyn Park, Woolworths, approximately 25 years ago.
Here I come, sauntering through the centre on a bright sunny day. New baby in her pram, me beaming with pride. As I mossy about, I notice and respond to the far more than normal friendly faces that are smiling broadly towards me. I quicken my pace and grin even wider than my face can really cope with as my heels click on the polished floor, my legs bare and still in good shape.
I arrive at Woolies – which just happens to be my place of employment when not on maternity leave – and go in search of my husband, who also just happens to work there. Now I don’t have a huge circle of friends, and to be fair I try to blend in and survive with having a few good relationships with my colleagues, so it’s most surprising to find myself surrounded by practically all the staff I work with. Plus they all look so happy to see me, the smiles on their faces are enormous.
Picture this, Cape Town, approximately 24 years later – no longer employed at Woolworths
Here I sit, blushing and cringing. No wonder everybody was smiling. They weren’t happy to see me, no they were bloody well laughing at me. The shame of it all, I was wearing my flipping pyjamas! And not just the normal and somewhat expected pants of these days that are border line casual pants. No, I went the whole hog. There I was in pyjama shorts – candy striped ones at that – with a matching lemon sleeveless t-shirt. And have you forgotten the heels I had on! I can’t even think of a way to describe how I must have looked. All I can wonder is, could I have looked anymore stupid if I’d tried?
Sadly I can only reply – NO I BLOODY WELL COULDN’T!
Note to self:
- Don’t ever go back to Menlyn Park
- Don’t ever be fooled by an unusual amount of smiling aimed directed my way
- Don’t ever try and work for Woolworths again, they will no doubt have on record my lack of ability to dress suitably
And finally and most importantly
- Take your pyjamas off before you leave the house