Monday, 20 August 2007

Red Dress and Elvis Bandini

I’ve been telling Kathryn for ages how the new Debenhams shopping centre has transformed Warrington. I shop there every week. “It desperately needed transforming,” she said. On Saturday afternoon she got to see it and made suitably impressed noises. But after shopping in London, I’m sure they were fake. She wanted a dress for her hen night, and had a picture in her mind of exactly what it would look like.

In Debenhams she found the dress. It has spaghetti thin straps, a fitted bodice nipped in at the waist, the skirt tapering out, with four layers of under skirting to give a can-can feel. Three inches of the net hang sexily below the knee length hemline. The red is a rich deep claret colour. The shiny organza fabric reflects the lights. It has the ‘wow’ factor.

After weeks of looking in shops in London for wedding shoes, she found a pair in the right shade of ivory, with the correct size three inch heals, and they were actually comfortable she said. “Come up north and you get sorted, no problem,” I said.

That evening we’d booked for the carvery at to our local, where an Elvis impersonator was doing a tribute for the anniversary of the King’s death. It was also the first anniversary of Dan’s sister’s death, Amy. She had been a life long fan of Elvis and had visited Graceland many years ago. She died on the same day as her hero.

Amy’s husband, Mike, and her daughter, Jenny came with us as a tribute to their departed wife and mum. Catching them unawares, I saw a sad or thoughtful look settle now and again on their faces, but it wasn’t a sad evening. Four other friends joined us, and it was more of a celebration of Amy’s life. Elvis Bandini turned out to be something of a comedian and he worked the floor kissing the women, hugging the men's shoulders, and generally flirting with everyone. He was thirty something, dark and Italian looking, quite handsome, but not in the Elvis league. No one ever could be.

The meal was delicious. To get rid of that after dinner bloated feeling, we danced enthusiastically till midnight, Kathryn celebrating Aaron's lucky escape, and Dan and I some positive news we'd had about Jon. At nearly chucking out time, Jenny came off the dance floor flushed with excitement. “I’ve had my photo taken with Elvis Bandini, and guess what? He’s asked me for a date.”

Copyright © 2007 Barbara Attwood

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