Nino Gugunishvili will be awarding a $10 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
Isn’t life all about embarrassing moments and how we deal with them? Truth is, I may remember so many painfully embarrassing things that happened to me throughout my childhood, youth or adult life that it would easily become a novel, a big book, really huge one, filled in with detailed descriptions of all the situations I got myself into. That would be a book about a slightly neurotic, not particularly confident woman, who’s a walking embarrassment indeed!
But wait a second, didn’t I just wrote one with a main character who gets in all kinds of troubles, unbelievable gems and silliest adventures? I did, and it’s called Friday Evening, Eight O’Clock! But, that’s another story... So, let’s get back to myself...
I have to say that I’m not the fastest walker on planet. I’m getting especially dangerous for pedestrians when walking with my cocker spaniel, because his retractable leash is too long and old and hard to shorten. You have to have a really fast reaction to operate with it. Needles to say, we’ve got in too many tricky, messy and unpleasant situations due to my inability to define distance, and my dog’s stubborn addiction to the car tires.
One day, we were returning from our morning walk when my dog decided that he had to pee one last time before heading home and chose a car wheel to do so. In a second the owner of the car ran out from the nearby bank building and started yelling at me, demanding to wipe the dog pee off from his car tire. For a brief moment I had a feeling that the time stopped. Every pedestrian hurrying to office or elsewhere stopped as well and looked at me, some of them with amusement and pity and some of them with disgust, clearly taking the yeller’s side and waiting for me to react.
Now, I’m not very fond of being in the centre of street scandals, and when someone shouts at me, I’m easily frustrated, I freeze. So, I didn’t really find anything to say in my defence, except that I was deeply sorry. I apologised for my dog’s intolerable behaviour, but the man didn’t stop yelling, continuing his accusations, presenting me as an irresponsible dog owner, who didn’t really care about other people’s expansive and valuable assets.
Without getting into any further debate and feeling immensely guilty, I stood on the main avenue in a morning rush hour, and tried to wipe off the pee from the wheel of the car. The owner watched me very carefully, giving me more and more tissue papers, miraculously appearing out of nowhere. I’ve noticed that he literary had his front car seat stacked with toilet paper rolls and paper tissues, as if he was waiting for this to happen, only to pleasurably catch the guilty.
Finally he was happy with the results of my work and I stopped. I walked out of the scene embarrassed, ashamed and annoyed, feeling his angry gaze still on my back. When I came home, I replayed the whole thing in my head and the ridiculousness of it made me laugh to my tears. I laughed, remembering myself, my dog, and the whole episode.
Funny thing is that this man still works at the bank near my house and I meet him often, we’re both avoiding eye contact. His car still stands on the same spot and if I’m walking with my dog, I’m always shortening the leash, so he won’t be able to get closer to it....
Respect other people. Be tolerant to their idiosyncrasies and laugh at yourself whenever it’s possible.
She's bored with Pilates. She's never tried yoga. She doesn't even have a driver's license. She lives a pretty ordinary life as a freelance writer who battles the occasional flow of melancholy with the regular flow of martinis. Nestled into her couch, her television remote in one hand and a cold adult beverage in the other, she's found a favorite way to pass the hours on a Friday evening. It's comfortable and familiar, but it's not exactly an exciting way to live. With two of her closest friends, a bossy mother, an eighty-two year old grandmother, and Griffin, her fat yellow Labrador at her side, she knows that there has to be something better out there.
When she gets an unexpected offer to relocate to France to write a magazine column, she thinks her circumstances are improving. But life in a new country isn't all pêches et la crème. Now far away from her comfort zone, Tasha must find the inner strength to start a new career and navigate the bizarre and unknown world of professional jealousy, intrigue, and conflicting personalities in a very foreign land.
It's enough to make a girl yearn for those quiet nights on the couch.
Balthazar Hamish woke up in a grumpy mood that morning. He had a terrible headache. His nervous young assistant, Clarissa, and a fashion editor, Chloe, were looking down at the magazine layout, spread out in huge sheets on his office desk. Clarissa always seemed to be a little afraid of him and his fat old cat, Baltimore.
Where did she get that awful velvety coat and ankle boots? She apparently is not at all a fashion addict, or a shopaholic, he thought. Still, she worked in a fashion magazine. What the hell is that? He looked down at one of the headlines printed in bold.
“A True Tale from an Unromantic Goddess”! Balthazar felt suddenly irritated. It’s a sophisticated magazine, for god’s sake. I don’t need more sentimental or feminist crap out here. That title sounded artificial and kitschy to him, as did the whole idea of aspiring foreign authors working for a magazine on a regular basis. It was Liz’s brilliant hunch, of course.
Liz Foster, his deputy! Stubborn and selfish! The whole damn thing about this magazine project was a total waste of time and possibly money. Shark heads in the top management of the publishing house were longing for Balthazar’s blood. He knew it from the very beginning of it all.
“Clarissa, could you please send reminders to all for our meeting later?” Balthazar tried to say it louder word by word. Clarissa looked at him and blinked. She was terrified by his presence and wanted to leave the room—the sooner the better.
“Tea maybe?” she asked, grabbing an opportunity to leave this uncomfortable place. She had to make tea for her new boss, make notes, organize staff meetings, and be optimistic about her new life and brand new dream job as a secretary at this damn, hellish magazine!
Working with Balthazar made her feel dizzy. She tried hard to overcome her nervousness and pretend to be confident, but her hands were almost always shaking.
“Tea would be great, thank you!” he responded quickly.
Clarissa walked out the door, leaving Chloe and Balthazar alone. Chloe, stylish and cute, looked at Clarissa, amazed but silent. A while later Chloe left, too.
Balthazar’s headache was getting intense. He opened the locker and took out a painkiller, swallowing it without water. Baltimore sat in his lap lazily. All Balthazar wanted was a cup of a dark tea, but his eyes were already glued to the printed text.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Nino Gugunishvili holds an MA in arts and has worked in film and television industries. Friday Evening, Eight O’Clock is her first published work of fiction. She lives in Tbilisi, Georgia.
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