Thursday, August 6, 2009

I have found the answer!

Is shopping a real drag sometimes? Do you want to run away when you see the long line at the cash register and all you want to buy is a carton of milk and a few bars of candy? I have discovered the quick and simple solution to long queues and impatient queuers and cue dramatic drum roll: a pregnant woman.

Pregnant women are the best. I never knew shopping could be so easy until I went with my pregnant sister-in-law. It's like having a VIP pass to all your favorite shops. Jip, just get a pregnant woman to escort you for a day and all your shopping worries are a thing of the past.

Upon receiving the great news of a new arrival to our family a few months ago, my sister-in-law decided to put things in first gear and just take it slow for a bit as she's a financial adviser which means her day is usually spent trying to fix all kinds of intricate money problems and the people that come with it. Really tiresome. Especially the people-part. So she took the afternoon off yesterday and asked if I wanted to go shopping with her. Hmf, what a silly, breath-wasting question. Anything with the letters s h o p in it (and in that order) equals a happy, kind, loving, agile me. It's very peculiar: when I have to run on a treadmill, I barely last five minutes; when it comes to shopping, I give the energizer bunny a run for its money and can last up to five days longer. I love shopping :)

We went to the bank first. I tried to warn her about going to a bank over lunch time: it's about as pleasant as sticking your head in a beehive, but she just smiled and said:

"Just watch and learn," was all she said.

We got to the queue and I was already irritated with the soft music which probably tries to be soothing, but actually just awakes the serial killer in people; you know, like the Manchurian Candidate. But then something strange happened. As soon as people saw my sister-in-law with her pregnant belly, it was like the Red Sea parting for us to go to the promised Front of the Line. It was amazing. I could almost hear the angels singing "haaaaaaa" but unfortunately I'm still waiting for the white light. It was as though someone yelled:

"Preeeeeegnant lady walking, preeeeeeeeegnant lady walking," like the guy in The Green Mile but instead of meeting Sparky, we met the friendly teller called Belinda who just adores babies and puppies and – unfortunately – talking. There's always a price attached to everything, I guess.

I looked at my sister-in-law in absolute awe.

"The belly has powers," I said astonished.

"Yes, pregnancy has its advantages," she smiled.

The bank was only the beginning.

Our next stop and my favorite place: the Mall. While we were walking in the Mall people looked at us differently, like they were almost smiling. Now, I always smile because my dad say it releases stress hormones (like I need it) and makes you feel better after doing so. It's like giving someone a present just because it's Thursday.

But people don't always smile back. Especially the old ones. They look at you suspiciously and grab a tight hold of their walking frame for in case you want to run away with it. Or maybe they just think you're high because what reason could there be for an unmarried twenty five year old blond lady to smile about? I even tried putting a lucky packet ring on my left ring finger once, but I still got the same reaction from the old ladies, only this time they looked at me with pity as if wanting to say: "You can't fool an old dog, little lady; we can sniff the singleness and loneliness on you."

Anyway, people made way for us to walk in the middle of the isle. Maybe they were just afraid to bump into my sister-in-law's big belly and having a law suit on their hands, but it was still nice having some breathing space in the usually busy lunch hour with people pushing up against you and especially horny guys grabbing your butt thinking they can use the close proximity as an excuse. I wasn't born yesterday, you pervert!

The same thing happened at every shop we went to as in the bank: we were immediately promoted to the front of the queue (maybe my sister-in-law could bring the belly to my job and get me promoted as well? Note to self: ask her next time we get together) and because of this we finished our shopping rather quickly so we even had time for a long lunch. But that's where the big belly became a problem.

The tables in the coffee shop were arranged quite close together and it being lunch hour and all, the shop was packed. The only open spot was in the outside section, but in order for us to get there we had to make our way through numerous tables.

Another thing I learned today was that a pregnant woman can't suck her belly in. The guy who ended up getting squeezed between his table and my sister-in-law's belly also learned that. The lady whose coffee ended up all over her pretty floral dress also learned that and the little baby's mother trying to feed him with a spoon when she only ended up stuffing her face with baby food unfortunately also learned that. I can go on and tell you about the milkshake the belly accidentally bumped off a waiter's tray and I can tell you about the credit card machine ending up in a lady's salad, but I think if I say any more about the lunch, my sister-in-law might just get upset and a pregnant woman cannot be upset. By anyone. There's an unwritten law about it apparently.

The food was actually good and aside the fact that my sister-in-law had to get up ever so often and visit the bathroom which made the rest of the customers cringe and duck it was a pretty nice day.

Looking at her I feel so privileged being able to experience the pregnancy from the sideline, like feeling the baby kick, seeing all the sonars (I invited myself several times to see the real deal up close and personal), reading the baby magazines with her, shopping for the most adorable and small booties and clothes. A pregnant woman is a beautiful thing; my sister-in-law sometimes just gives a small smile stroking her belly and I think it's because she hears something only pregnant woman are allowed to hear or feel something only they can feel: the bond between an unborn child and its mother. Like my bond with my dog, Rupert, that people don't really get.

I myself can't stop touching her belly; it's like Humpty Dumpty is right within my reach. I asked if I can paint a little face on it and she looked at me and then asked:

"Can I die your dog black and blue?"
I never dared asking her such a stupid question again.

The before

The after


Gorilla Bananas said...

I think you're feeling broody, Ladytruth. Your turn will come.

ladytruth said...

GB: NO NO NO thank you! Not yet, anyway. Your comment reminded me of my good friend Michael that always says he'll get married someday when his children insist on it. He's the son of a preacher, by the way.

Tennyson ee Hemingway said...

'Can I die your dog black and blue?' Great answer. And funny too.

Mariann Simms said...

I have the "shopping/Energizer Bunny" syndrome, too! :)

The one bad thing about being pregnant is that, altho no one grabs your butt (I find no one grabs my butt, you gave me a complex)...they feel compelled to rub your belly. Like "um...since when did I suddenly become your personal Buddha statue?"

Judearoo said...

Wonderful! And worth remembering too.
Another one for your 'red sea' list, if youre ever in Rome you'll notice its IMPOSSIBLE to cross the street. They drive like utter lunatics and pay no noticable attention to pedestrian crossings whatsoever.

The solution; nuns.

Theyre considered unlucky in Italy and drivers are always TERRIFIED of hitting one, or even invoking any negative nun vibes. You find a nun preparing to cross and you're over. Its miraculous.

ladytruth said...

Tennyson: my sister-in-law has her moments, but these days it's more grunting (her legs hurt) and moaning (she craves something different every day) and less funny. It's better to just sit and watch her stroke her belly in silence.

Mariann: there's just something about a pregnant belly that's so cute and odd you want to touch it constantly to check if there's really something inside. But it doesn't feel the same when you rub a beer belly though cause we all know what's in that one.

Judearoo: when in Rome grab the first, best nun: check!

Organic Meatbag said...

Like the wise Gorilla said, you will have your day too, Ladytruth...
Me, for example, I am a man but I look like I'm pregnant! Big food belly! Hahaha!

Eric said...

Having a child would probably be a lot of work for just better shopping for nine months. But you're a nice girl, so let me know if I can help, haha.

otherworldlyone said...

Pervy Eric... ;)

Your sister-in-law sounds like the most low key, calm pregnant chick.

My family was terrified of me. That was the most beautiful thing about the whole experience.

I was like medusa with a cleaning cart. "Bitch I KNOW you didn't just walk mud in this house!" And for some reason I had the strength of 2 men. I was always lifting furniture. Weird.

Some day I'll have to relate the birth story. It's epic...and not in the usual way.

ladytruth said...

Organic Meatbag: not any time soon, I hope!

Eric: I heard it requires a lot of practise, so your help will be greatly appreciated ;)

OWO: you should really consider a post on the birth story; it will either scare some men into never having sex again, or convince women like me that the whole ordeal is worh it :)

otherworldlyone said...

Oh hon, I think it'd scare off both sexes.

ladytruth said...

Then you should SERIOUSLY consider doing a post on it; I've always wondered if it's as bad as they portray it on movies, but my friends, my sister-in-law and my sister said all they can remember was yelling: "Amp up the dosage on those drugs!"

mysterg said...

There is nothing more beautiful than a pregnant woman. Although I'm not sure the compensations you mention are worth the pain of giving birth!

ladytruth said...

mysterg: certainly not for me, but that's why I prefer having pregnant friends where I just reap all the benefits and leave the "professionals" to do the birth part.

Jeve (aka John and Steve) said...

Nicely written blog. Pregnant woman definitely work, but only sometimes in NYC! I've seen pregnant women stand in the subway train. No one giving up a seat. SAD!