Thursday, October 2, 2014

My Writing - I Can Be Your Hero, Baby.

As a child I 'd always wanted an older brother, one who would protect me, fight my battles for me, have fun, play hide and go seek and most importantly be my hero. Although, my parents only managed to have daughters. I have, two elder sisters and one sister, eleven years younger than me. Over the years they've protected me, help fight my battles, played hide and go seek, shared many fond memories together and they are my heroes. One of those fond memories was on the night of June 20th 2002, in which my elder sisters, Alison and Judith as well as my eldest daughter Jodi shared an evening, which we still talk and giggle about today and we even have the pictures to help jog our memories.

A car horn honked from outside, I peeked out the window to see my sister's car. I called to Jodi, grabbed my purse, then Jodi and I headed out the front door.

Hi.” I said as I slid onto the car, Jodi climbed in and sat next to me.

Hi.” My sisters replied.

Judith cranked her head to the side and asked, “You excited Jodi?”

Smiling, Jodi answered, “Yeah, I can't wait.”

Then let's get going.” She popped in a music CD and we were off.

We chatted and listened to music, it didn't take long to get to our destination, the CIA – Cardiff International Arena as it was called then. I'd booked our tickets for the Enrique Iglesias' concert a few months previous and with the concert tickets, came dinner. With the car parked and locked in the parking lot, we all headed to dinner. We followed the pathway around the outside of the arena and as we approached the entrance to the backstage, we spotted a guy wearing a red baseball hat, pulled down low. We stopped, watched and crossed our fingers in hopes that it was Enrique going inside, we anxiously waited with baited breath to see if he'd turn around – he didn't.

With flutters of excitement and disappointment, Alison, Judith, Jodi and I carried on towards the Portuguese restaurant, Madeira. Stepping inside we were hit by strong aromas of spices, we were also greeted with warm smiles and friendly faces as we were seated at a large dark wooden table.

So, what can we get for you lovely ladies tonight?” Asked the young waiter. “Would you like to start with some wine?”

My sisters and I smiled, Judith answered for us, “Oh, we don't drink alcohol, thank you.”

With his eyebrows raised the server replied, “Oh, not a problem. Would you want some soft drinks then?”

We'll have a large jug of iced water, two cokes and a sprite please.” We all answered in turn.

I'll be right back with those, for you.” The server smiled and walked away.

With a camera in my hand, I snapped a few pictures together and talked about how lucky we were to get good seats for the concert.

The server came back with our drinks, “Here you go.” He set the glasses of sodas and a jug of water down, pulled out his little white order pad and said, “Ladies, what can I get you to eat.” His pen poised and ready to scribble down our orders.

None of us had ever eaten Portuguese food before, so after asking what seemed like a million questions, we settled on chicken, beef and vegetables. Our table was laden with a medley of roasted vegetables and enormous skewers with hunks of chicken and beef, which hung above our table, their aromas wafted all around us making our mouths water. Young men, dressed in black trousers, white shirts, black ties and over their trousers, black mid length aprons and in each hand they carried a large meat fork and knife. Whenever we gestured with a smile or a slight wave of our hand, the servers would come over, cut slice's of meat off the skewers and set it on our plates.

For the next hour my sisters, Jodi and I, spent our time chatting and eating and with full stomach's the meal drew to an end, we settled the bill and headed back towards the arena to enjoy a night of merriment and much swooning at Enrique Iglesias. Paying that little bit extra for tickets had paid off, we found our seats, tickled pink that they were nestled towards the middle section only 6 rows back from the stage. We sat and chatted as we anxiously waited for the concert to begin. Smells of beer, condiments, strong perfume and sweaty people floated all around us. Then, the lights dimmed to black and beams of white/blue lights lit up the white drapes that hung at the back of the stage. For a few seconds, you could hear a pin drop, then that changed. The first beat of music began and Enrique walked through the subtly lit drapes, he was wearing jeans, navy T-shirt with Hawaii 83 on it and a black beanie hat. He was even more handsome than he did on the TV or in pictures. Everyone cheered, inching forward to the seat in front of them eager to get a better eye full of him.

He began to sing, “Here's how it goes, you and me, up and down but maybe this time we'll... Get it right, worth the fight.” His eyes focusing on us, the audience.

Most, if not all the women, including my sister's, Jodi and myself in the arena were swept away on a roller coaster of cheering and screaming. I remember looking at my daughter's face, she wore the biggest smile plastered across it. This was her first concert and she was soaking up every little detail. Alison, Judith, Jodi and I sang along to the songs, we cheered and screamed like we were a teenager again and that night my daughter saw a different side to me. One who wasn't rushing around doing chores, looking after five children or about what would be needed to do when I got home. What my daughter saw was a much more relaxed, laughing out loud mother sharing in a fun evening with her daughter and her sisters.

We were having the time of our lives. Enrique dazzled us all with his looks and voice as he continued to sing numerous songs. Then the first bars of Hero started to play and the crowd went wild again, Enrique smiled, his pearly white teeth shone like bright stars. He teased us all, as he tried to decide which lucky lady who would join him up on stage. All the women instantly became raving, screaming lunatics wanting to be with one who was chosen.

My sister Judith started to holler and scream waving her hands in the air, “Pick me.” Over and over, but to no avail.

Enrique finally chose a lady from the front row, she was a little more of the fuller figure and ecstatic, the crowd howled and screeched. He asked her name, to which I can't remember then he gazed into her eyes and started to sing, “Would you dance, if I asked you to dance.” The crowd roared, Enrique continued, “would you run and never look back? Would you cry, If you saw me crying? And would you save my soul, tonight?”

My sisters and I were half smiling, half scowling that we weren't up there, being the ones to go weak at the knees and giddy with emotion. That was how the woman was acting, she was in complete awe of him, she swayed back and forth with him and when he sang the chorus, she lost control as she held onto Enrique with all her might, even squeezing his firm butt. When the song came to an end, he planted a sweet kiss on her lips! She became a hysterical happy mess! There was an uproar of shrieks and cheers from the audience or it could have been every lady thinking how unfair it was that is wasn't them instead of her!

The whole concert whizzed by intoxicated with laughter, throats felt raw from all the singing and cheering. I took little sips of water throughout the evening, to help combat the hoarseness, I was feeling in my throat. Periodically, all manner of objects was thrown up on stage for Enrique and if I'm correct even a few ladies bras found their way up on stage too, mine not being one of them. Some young girls who'd been so caught up and overwhelmed they collapsed and had to be carried out from all the excitement. I for one was not going to let that happen and about halfway through, I needed to use the bathroom, but there was no way I was going to miss a single moment of the concert, not by fainting, being overcome with Enrique hysteria or needing the bathroom, so, I held it in.

Sadly the concert came to a timely end. My sisters, Jodi and me wishing that Enrique kept singing all night long, we walked, albeit slowly through the throngs of people and out the main doors. Making our way back around the side of the arena with hopes that we might get a glimpse of Enrique leaving via the backstage entrance.

No such luck.

Judith, Alison, Jodi and I strolled back to the parking lot and by then, my bladder was fit to burst! I knew I couldn't hold it in any longer and with few cars left in the parking lot and no bathroom in sight, I undid my jeans and with a huge sigh of relief, I relieved myself. Knowing I was getting into my sister's car I didn't bother zipping my jeans back up, might as well be comfy riding home, right? I just plopped down on the backseat kicked off my shoes and give my throbbing feet a break. My sister started the engine and off she drove.

The atmosphere in the car was electric and filled with laughter, we all agreed that the concert was outstanding. My sister pulled out of the parking lot and turned onto the main road, feeling a little warm, I pressed the button and opened the window and enjoyed the cool air on my rosy cheeks. My eyes scanned over parked cars and brick walls, my sister turned a corner and drove past the Park Inn Hotel, that was when we spotted a large black SUV parked in front of the hotel, with its backseat window rolled down. I squinted and I could of sworn it was Enrique, who was sitting in that seat, with the same faded red baseball hat on, the same hat we'd seen on a guy who we thought resembled Enrique earlier that evening.

Uh... I think that's Enrique in that car over there.” I said.

WHAT?” Said Alison.

No, really?” Judith craned her neck to the side. “It is... It's him.”

Jodi, leaned forward, trying to see past me and out the window, by now Judith had reached the intersection and seeing as no cars were around, ran a red light and did make an illegal U-turn and drove back towards the hotel, and the parked car. Before Judith could take her keys out of the ignition, I opened the door, hopped out of the car. With a pen and the concert program in hand, I ran towards the SUV and came to a stop next to the passengers window, the backseat window had now been rolled halfway up. Jodi followed close behind.

I tapped at the front window, “Hi.”

The window rolled down a halfway, I smiled at the guy dressed in a black suit and tie sitting in the passenger seat.

What can I do for you.”

I swallowed, looked behind the guy's shoulders and looked at the faded baseball hat which was pulled down and I eagerly spilled out my words, “I'd like to get Enrique's autograph please.”

My sisters had finally caught up to us and stood by the halfway rolled up the window and had a huge grin spread across their faces.

The guy dressed in black, who was obviously a bodyguard smiled and said, “What are you talking about, Enrique is not in this car.”

I laughed, “Yeah, right,” I smiled at the bodyguard and said, “Enrique, can I get your autograph please.”

With that the faded red baseball hat lifted up and they're looking back at me was Enrique! His big brown eyes and huge smile, he was looking at me. My heart started to beat a little quicker, my knees felt weak and all I could squeak out was, “Hi.”

Enrique smiled,“Hi.” he said.
Now, I felt like a bowl of wobbly jelly! I handed the bodyguard my program and he passed it back to Enrique. His window began to roll all the way down, my sisters whipped their programs up and handed them to Enrique. All I could do was stare and be in complete awe at how handsome he really is. Then came my turn, I began to walk forward, but ended up shuffling – yes, my jeans, the same jeans I hadn't bothered to zip back up after I'd relieved my bladder, had finally decided to slide down my legs! Enrique's eyes had already witnessed my embarrassment. My eyes went from smiling to wide–eyed, Enrique chuckled, I blushed and felt like I could just curl up into a ball and roll away. My hand darted down and grabbed onto my jeans, I held on tight and shuffled forward.
Enrique handed me back my program, all signed, I smiled and said, “Thank you.”

You're welcome, where you all from?”

Oh....his voice was dreamy, I answered, “Merthyr and Llanelli.”

My sister Judith kept repeating, “You're such a babe.”

Cool.” He grinned, “you all have a great rest of the night.”

I blurted out, “thank you very much.” in Welsh. What was I thinking, he didn't have a clue what I was saying! Duh moment for me.

Enrique waved and said, “Bye.”

That was our cue to up and leave, with a quick wave we walked back to the car, I shuffled along like a penguin, my fingers still clutching on to my jeans. Judith and Alison sat in the front seats, Jodi and I clambered into the back. My sisters stared at me and burst out laughing! I knew why they were laughing – my jeans! Jodi on the other hand was a 12 year old girl who was totally embarrassed by her mother and two aunts who acted like a trio of raging hormone screaming teenagers, not to mention that I'd dared to speak Welsh to him. On the journey back home, we laughed and sang along to Enrique's songs. We will always remember that amazing night in which Enrique wowed us with his singing and dazzled us with his good looks and he can always be our Hero!

            Copyright 2014 Freckles. All Rights Reserved.

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