Fiction. Brad and Cynthia’s Wedding
Normally, mixing drugs and alcohol is not a recommended practice. But, if you can’t make an exception for your best mate’s wedding, what kind of friend are you?
The trip from Murwillumbah to Brisbane last August (the middle of Austral Winter) was uneventful. Despite the good motorways, finding a good vein while riding in an SUV is a greater challenge than one might imagine. Laureen avoided bumps and pot holes as much as possible, which i really appreciated. She is so considerate–even remembered to bring along my bleach kit. I was feeling fine as we approached the train station at Varsity Lakes, just across the border of Queensland and New South Wales. She parked the SUV and we boarded the train heading north..
Should have been clear sailing from there to South Bank Station in Brisbane. However, with security cameras everywhere and Big Brother’s prohibition on public alcohol consumption, my aspirations of dissolution were put on hold for the time being. Fortunately, I was able to drink Bundaberg Rum from a flask, uncontested on the one kilometer walk between the train station and the River Cat ferry.
I must admit that I was not feeling my best on the ferry to Kangaroo Point, as Neptune himself takes issue with the inebriates who ply His waters. Well, I have news for him: He is no saint himself!
As we disembarked at the Holman Street ferry stop, Laureen guided me to the Anglican Church, where I took a nap around the corner from the main entrance. Some time later, I awakened to an odorous and unpleasant moisture emanating from my torso and legs. I asked Laureen if she was feeling better. But, with her characteristic Bart Simpson laugh (the one with the slight cackle at the end) she informed me that I had, in fact, vomited upon myself. Fortunately, I had had the foresight to wear a Hawaiian shirt (one of those classy ones with the coconut shell buttons) that camouflaged my chunder. My khaki trousers were less forgiving. I felt betrayed by my own pants.
By this time, Laureen, satisfied that I would be okay, went to confer her greetings to the assembled crowd. I sought a faucet to mitigate my arguably soiled condition. But, was surprised to learn that when I turned on the faucet, sprinklers just around the corner soaked the assembled the wedding party. What were the odds on that!
Nevertheless, I went around the corner, removed my potentially offending garb and conscientiously cleansed my clothing in the soothing sprinklers . I then dressed and took a seat next to Laureen in the cold stone church. She really loves weddings. In fact, she has been married seven times.
I slept through much of the ceremony, and don’t remember much about it, except for admonishing a five year old to “watch it with those flowers!” as she spread rose petals at the initial procession. I do remember awakening when the priest said “You may now kiss the bride”. I obediently staggered towards the altar, only to be stopped by that killjoy Greg Dunny. The padre should have been more specific and Greg should have minded his own business.
Laureen and I walked to the reception nearby (the longest half kilometer of my life!). There we discovered that my name was absent from the list. That was okay. While Laureen had a good feed, I sought the refuge of a sleeping space among kindred souls. With a view of Storey Bridge and a cool breeze to comfort my soul, I savored thoughts of the happy couple, enjoyed the view and looked forward to the warm and forgiving embrace of my beloved Laureen.
Michael T. George
28 December 2018