Romance and Roses: Are Those for Me?
Valentine’s Day always catches me on the hop and that goes for the frog in my life – or sorry should that be Prince Charming? Regardless of the fact that it is heralded by hopeful hearts and flower decorations and prominently placed lingerie and chocolates in every shop window somehow the evening of the thirteenth of February always ends the same way with my standing in the newsagent with a predominantly male group of last minute chancers looking disconsolately at an array of cards that I wouldn’t send to my worst enemy let alone my nearest and dearest. This year at the last gasp I remembered I had a vaguely appropriate one in my card bag—or at least more appropriate than the “Welcome Baby Boy” that’s been there at least a year—could someone hurry up and have a boy. It was unfortunate when I opened up the card that it said “Happy Anniversary” but a slash of the pen soon corrected that—it could have been worse along the lines of “Get Well Soon” that might have made it sound as if love and marriage were some kind of lingering affliction.
Valentine’s Day dawned grey as it were, as indeed it dawns every single morning in Sydney at the moment and indeed far from being drenched in rose petals I got absolutely soaked walking into work—I can see the “ditch the car and use the legs” New Year’s resolution is about to go the same way as the rest of them. My mood lifted when I returned home to find a large flower box on the front step. I walked up the steps with a Nigella Lawson, think Domestic Goddess, type sway of my hips. The smirk however was swiftly replaced by a look of frothing fury as I discovered that far from being from a secret admirer, or even at a pinch my husband, the flowers in question were in fact for one of my daughters. Hell hath no fury like a mother scorned. I had a moment of instant empathy on the Snow White’s stepmother front—and made a mental note not to ask any mirrors leading questions along “Who’s the fairest?” lines for fear of receiving an unfavourable if truthful opinion. I also resolved to point out to the relevant Drama Queen the importance of explaining to any prospective boyfriends the first rule of successful dating: Suck up to the mother.