The couple were sitting enjoying a meal and talking in the Grove Bar and Restaurant. They were sitting at a corner table, enjoying the fact that the table was well spaced from other customers. The restaurant was fairly busy for a Wednesday evening in early July.
All was well with the couple when suddenly the woman, who had her back to the rest of the room felt something hit the back of her head with some force. Startled she looked around to see what was happening. The man had seen something flying across the room and strike his companion. He was ready to stand and get into an angry discussion.
What happened? And how did this all end?
Let’s go back and join a family group of four. My wife and I, our daughter H and Son-in-Law T. T or Trevor was the hero of my story about the pond and the bear – you can read about it at The mysterious case of the emptying pond click here
H and T live in England and visited us this summer. After a fun and busy time at the lake we had returned to Winnipeg so they could get ready to return to not so Jolly Old England (Euro cup – EU decision – the rain in July). They wanted to take us out for a farewell dinner. Who was I to reject such a generous offer. We decided on a casual establishment. It was hot and shorts attire most comfortable.
At first we were shown to a table in the bar area. We requested to be moved to the restaurant and were obliged. We sat with Susan and me facing a couple at a corner table, enjoying a meal and talking. H and T had their backs to the couple. There was a doorway onto the outdoor patio between our table and theirs. Another of our daughters, M, arrived to join us and sat at the end of the table.
After a round of drinks and appetizers our conversation became quite animated. Our daughter, H, uses her hands and arms to emphasize and highlight her points. She was making a vigorous point to T and flung her arm wide to establish her position, when her wooden bracelet came flying off her wrist, flew through the air at mach 1 heading directly towards the back of the woman’s head.
Despite the velocity of the flying object it seemed as though time stood still as we watched, mouths agape, as like a heat seeking missile the bracelet locked onto its target.
It didn’t make a lot of noise on contact, but the startled woman leapt and turned to see who was attacking her. Her male companion looked ready to declare this as an act of war.
Shocked, our table was infected by an attack of its own – the giggles. To her credit H immediately got up and went over to apologize, explain what had happened and retrieve the now identified FO (Flying Object, no longer UFO). The male companion seemed to have an FO of an entirely different sort in mind, but as the woman started to laugh, he too relaxed and joined in the spirit of “Oh what a funny thing to have happened…”
Red faced but laughing, H returned to our table where we smiled and laughed with the couple.
I wish I could say this was the end of the embarrassment, but when T asked for the bill, we started to argue, in a nice way, about who should pay. T adamant it was their treat, M, Susan and I arguing it should be ours or at least shared.
The waitress (can I still use that word?) brought the paper bill (being a casual sort of place it wasn’t in a nice, discrete leather folder, just a piece of paper). T took it from the lady, M made a rapid, boarding house reach and snatched the prize from T’s grasp, much like the ball was snatched from many of England’s footy players in the recent unmentionable tournament.
T’s reflexes are fast and he tried valiantly to retrieve the bill, unfortunately in his exuberance he sent his beer glass flying. It bounced across the table making an attention-attracting crash. The eyes of all the patrons were focused on our unruly group. Obviously disturbing the upper-middle class River Heights gentility. Luckily, the glass was made a sturdy commercial quality and did not break. And T had made sure it contained no remnants of a fond beverage.
Reluctantly, M was persuaded to return the bill to T. He is a West Ham fan and we know what they can be like!
After paying the bill, and slinking out, but still giggling, we vowed not to return to that establishment unless in disguise.
Another fine adventure for our family and a story that will no doubt grow with time and fond retelling at future gatherings.
So beware, you never know when, during some enchanted evening, a UFO may come hurtling across a crowded room and you will meet a stranger, quite possibly my daughter H. Be kind, these things happen to her.