That’s where Maggie found love why not me?
(Out-take from The Bridge of Deaths by M.C.V. Egan)
Raining again, bloody June and it is raining again, we will probably have the worst weather for the Olympics. Next week is Ascot and I need a hat, where the @#%! is she? It was her idea that we meet here at Foyles where Maggie met Bill. Same star patterns as two and a half years ago or some other such silly astro mumbo-Jumbo and if it worked for Maggie maybe the place could have a bit of magic for me as well….
“Hullo? I thought you were only smoking when you drank these days?”
“I am but I had to wait for you didn’t… Is that a hat box? You bought a hat for Ascot without me? You bitch!”
“Erica you are going to feel like such an ass…I bought you the hat you liked. You know the one. We saw it on the window in that little shop…”
“Oh Jennifer! I don’t feel that bad; you owed me a good gift.”
Erica and Jennifer hugged and laughed. They were Maggie’s friends and now that Maggie was so busy playing mum and wife they had become best friends. They were both about to celebrate their 30th birthday on June 30th. 2012; they referred to each other as the birthday twins from the moment they met at primary school.
That was the extent of their similarity; Jennifer always the giver and Erica the taker. The former always saw the world as full of light with bits of darkness whilst the latter saw the world as darkness with bits of light. Somehow their friendship worked well and they often found time for each other.
“Off to Foyles then. Or should we repeat the Magic and first go into the Sex Shop across the street?”
“Don’t you remember? Maggie was at the sex shop buying strange condoms and silly sex toys for a bridal shower. What was her coworker’s name?
“I don’t remember her name but she was the one with the horrid Cranberry-red Bridesmaid dresses. Awful photos she posted on facebook; and Maggie used the very kinky condoms that were for decorative purposes only and managed to get pregnant that very night.”
As Erica’s mocking laughter subsided she went on to say.
“I’d rather go to Foyles, and have a look at my hat than go to the Sex Shop, isn’t the café on the first floor?”
“I’ve no idea.”
“I still don’t see why you think we could meet the loves of our lives here? Just because Maggie stalked a bloke from America with an identity crises here as she was carrying a bag full of novelty condoms, doesn’t mean we’ll get lucky. Anyhow everyone knows the glow in the dark condoms always rip if you are really having fun.”
“Not everyone Erica, you would know but not everyone.”
“I don’t shag every bloke I meet; contrary to what you may think.”
“Oh you’ve missed a few?”
“Oh sod off, it’s not like you are the Holy Virgin Jennifer”
“I don’t think there is a Virgin Jennifer…”
The outburst of laughter attracted as much attention to the exotic pretty young women as did the hat box. Jennifer’s good looks had always been easy to enhance with a bit of make-up and Erica oozed sexuality and adventure with a few key piercings. Erica attributed her sexiness to the fact that she very much enjoyed sex. That day looking for love both were particularly attractive.
“Did you know that this store came about because two brothers failed their Civil Service exams and sold their books second hand then realized there was a great market …I really believe this place has a sort of magical energy; I believe this to be a place where dreams come true by mere fluke.”
“What? You’ve been Googling and Wikipedianing to no end again?”
“No, actually I found the info on the Foyles website; this was created by a miracle of failure it is a really nice story.”
Erica opened the hat box and it was the perfect hat, even better than the one they had seen together on the window display.
“It is a different colour from the one we spotted on the window when the shop was closed, but I thought this…”
“I love it! It suits me much better. So what are we supposed to do, I am happy just staying here at the Café. I am not going to seek out men in the re-incarnation section.”
“Astrologically it is a good two and a half years since Maggie and Bill met here, and I made an Astrology chart and today this place is full of Magic.”
“Really? That Mumbo Jumbo again? Oh yes! You had dinner with Maggie’s mum a few days ago, how’s the old girl adapting to being a Nan?”
“She’s thrilled as any first time Nan would be. Astrology has been most respected and used by many for centuries, simply misunderstood because it is abused by those who generalize it. If you plot an actual chart of a person or place, it is quite a different story.”
“Well if I am going to find love you need to find the section with the Kama Sutra or books of that sort because I am not bloody interested in re-incarnation or Astrology.”
“And with your flexibility Erica, I am sure you can get into every odd position in the Kama Sutra.”
“That I can! Thanks to the compulsory ballet lessons my parents inflicted on me as a child, but The Kama Sutra is a very misunderstood and very spiritual book, I’ll have you know.”
“You are serious? You have actually tried the positions.”
“Absolutely! With no regrets I might add. And to tell you the truth it was the bar stretching exercises and the splits make me far more make me sexually flexible than any other absurd moves with names I hardly remember from those horrid Ballet lessons.”
Jennifer’s expression of utter disbelief was replaced by a beaming smile; Erica did not see the very handsome blokes approaching them.
“Excuse me? Do you mind if we sit here? There don’t seem to be any other tables”
Not too bright it is raining outside. Of course the place is…
Erica’s thoughts were interrupted by Jennifer’s welcoming voice.
“Are you Americans?”
“No, we are Canadians.”
“You look very much alike are you twins or just brothers?”
“Brothers, this is Gil and I am Will.”
“That is quite funny the original creators of Foyles were brothers and their names were William and Gilbert. Please join us. I’m Jennifer and this is my friend Erica. What brings two Canadians to Foyles?”
“Gil stands for Giles and Will stands for Wilbur. Mom read a book about a bookstore in Charing Cross Road and she wanted us to post a picture for her on facebook and it started to rain like hell, so we came in. We came to London early to train for the Olympics to get used to the weather and the terrain. We live in Florida, where it is hot and flat, and we wanted a real chance to compete.”
Erica had finally caught her breath and gotten past the absurd thoughts …of possible magic, the thought of two brothers and the possibility of re-incarnation. Her sharp tongue however could not help but mock the Canadian’s name.
Who on their right mind names a son Wilbur; they are easy on the eyes…
“Let me guess mum also liked Charlotte’s Web”
“She loves E.B. White!”
“Is your family joining you for the Olympics?”
“No, they have to watch on TV.”
“Your wives too.”
“No we have no wives, no girlfriends just our bicycles and we are ready to compete.”
Erica found her sexy back and switched it on to its maximum. When men were that handsome and that available, Wilbur could be a perfectly acceptable name.
“I know two perfectly happy single tour guides to make sure you can post great photos for your Mum.”