Saturday, 12 January 2013

Excerpt - Wife

This was originally posted on an alternate blog.

The following is another excerpt from my book. This one is called "Wife".

I often think of my future. Of my job and my home and my children. And my wife. My beautiful, blonde haired, Canadian wife.

I once dreamt that I was living in a nice, big house. There was a leather sofa facing a big TV and I was sitting on this sofa. A woman then appeared at the doorway of the room, fresh from coming down the stairs. She is my wife. As she has a hand over her tummy, she says two words.

“I’m pregnant.”

Immediately we have been teleported to my grandmother’s house. We are telling the family face to face. But we haven’t actually been teleported – it’s been a few weeks and we had to go through the process of booking the flights, packing our bags, arriving at the airport, checking in at the airport, waiting for the flight, waiting again as the flight is delayed, being on the flight and then arriving back in England.

But this is a dream. Dreams are convenient. You can skip out irrelevant things like that. Like in a film or a TV show where a man and his pregnant wife fly over to England from Canada to inform their family of an upcoming arrival; should such a collection of moving images exist.

Except, it turns out, the dreams can also choose not to skip the irrelevant things. We sit through an entire conversation with my grandmother telling her that my wife is pregnant. I’m not sure how long the sentence “my wife is pregnant” seems to be but it turns into a conversation including things such as “how are you?”, “what is it like in Canada?”, “is the cat still as fat as it was?”

This is only a dream. I am not really living in Canada. I don’t really have a blonde Canadian wife who is pregnant. But yet we have a very long conversation, in a dream, where we pretend that this has really happened.

Then we have arrived at one of my grandmother’s three sister’s houses. We begin to tell her that my wife is pregnant. This conversation is also long. In my mind, I question why I am dreaming this. I do not need to. But yet I am. And then my grandmother’s sister’s daughter arrives and we tell her that my wife is pregnant.

This is no longer a dream. Dreams are supposed to be exciting and strange and insane. Not as mundane as reality. Not even more mundane as reality. If I really did have a beautiful blonde Canadian wife who was pregnant, we wouldn’t wait several weeks to catch a plane to England and then proceed to go to all of the houses in which my family reside, particularly my extended family, and tell them about the unborn child. We’d wait maybe a few hours, celebrate ourselves, and then phone up my family in England. They would pass the word between themselves.

Eventually I wake up from this dream. I have a usual day. And then I go to sleep. My Canadian wife has given birth. We are in my grandmother’s living room...