Baby, you can drive my car September 19, 2006Posted by BiB in Uncategorized.
…just as soon as I get one, ooh ooh ooh ooh yeah.
As I settled in for a marathon session of avoiding work this morning, freshly back from having two Berlin ladies abusing my teeth – mind you, I’m done for six months, I’ve been assured. I wished them a Happy New Year and skipped out of the surgery with glee – my phone vibrated into life. I was awaiting this vibration keenly…
Last night, I went for a drinkypoo with these people and felt revived and revitalised by socialising in English. On the way home, I seized on the good mood and fingered a gooey SMS to the Russian. Then, when he hadn’t answered within 18 seconds, I fingered a slightly less gooey one asking if the gooeyness was reciprocated. I staggered the half-hour home and my phone remained decidedly silent, unvibratey and ungooey throughout. If I hadn’t had a minor skinful, I might have had trouble getting to sleep. As it was, I was out like a light.
So it was with some glee that I leapt on the phone this morning. The Russian’s first SMS went, “…I have just signed my new driving licence. I hope you’ll buy me a car now. I want a BMW.” Darlings, we can drive! We can drive! I feel so fucking grown-up. I gushed SMSly back at how proud I was that he’d passed his test. But never one to let the potential for foreboding pass, my joy was instantly dashed with worry. “Darling,” I SMSed, “you did PASS your test, didn’t you, and haven’t just given some policeman a bung (and a bottle of cognac – the alcoholic bribe of choice in Russia, in my experience) to give you the licence?” The Russian had attempted to get his driving licence two years ago. Unfortunately, he was told to stop the car after about 13 seconds when he happily sped through a big, red light. Still, not one for letting reality get in the way of a mission, he was soon down the police-station working out how to get around the nasty detail of having technically failed the test. Agreement was reached, but, dang, the chief bribe-taker was on a ‘technological’ or ‘technical’ break – these are a Russian speciality. My sister once visited me in St. Petersburg. We wanted to go on some boat-trip round the canals. Just as we got to the front of the queue, the glowering woman who hadn’t been out of her booth since before the revolution defiantly propped a piece of A4 with ‘technical break’ written on it against the glass. During her break, she sat doing nothing in her booth. We looked at her. She looked at us. Then, without so much as a bell or the firing of a cannon, the break ended and she was ready to sell once more – and the Russian’s attempts to get his hands on a thoroughly undeserved driving licence were thwarted. “No, I really passed,” he replied. I SMSed further congratulations and pride (and told him he could buy his own flipping car). “Don’t be too proud,” he answered, in a rare moment of self-criticism. “The policemen told me I needed to get a lot more practice and I’ve got a double chin on the photograph.”
Every silver lining has a cloud.