So here we are, our family of four, finally living in Spain. I actually can’t quite believe it. The dream we never thought would happen is now our reality. And unfortunately, reality involves getting a job.
Having met my husband at the local Am Dram society in Hastings several years (and dress sizes) earlier, I decided to make contact before leaving the UK with the Fuengirola equivalent known as the ‘Salon Varieties Theatre’. After peddling my wares on Face Book messenger, I happened to mention that my husband is an electrician and they replied forthwith explaining that their lighting technician was about to retire in April and would my husband be interested in applying for the position? Bears and woods instantly sprang to mind.
Now, before I go any further, can we briefly talk about ‘Dream Jobs’? We all have that one thing we would love to do for a living. I’d love to write a book. A book that you can hold in your hand, to sniff the ageing paper, to turn over the corner of the page when your eyes grow weary and laugh out loud in a room full of people and not care because for that brief moment in time, you are that heroine in chapter 12.
To see my name on a dust cover would be better than waking up without pillow marks embedded onto my crepe face.
My husband’s school leaving wish was to work in the West End, to bring the performers to life in front of a live audience. With his dream still intact he escaped the clutches of the local secondary modern age 16, gangly and unprepared and sat innocent and eager in front of the careers advisor who instantly poured water on his ambitions by replying ‘No son, that’s a career for fantasists and rich people from London. Get yourself a proper job. People will always need plugs and sockets and wires changing. Become an electrician, you’ll always be able to put food on the table then’.
So that’s what he did 30 years ago, he became an electrician. A job he enjoyed but never loved. And now, on offer, in a resort 1300 miles away is a chance to turn back the clock. So, after a brief ‘we’re here!’ call, off we trot, showered and shaved (and that’s just me) to meet the people that have the potential to reinstate a young mans dreams on an older body.
An hour later we are sat outside the Theatre bar, drinking fresh orange juice and waiting with sweaty palms to meet ‘the board members’. The tables surrounding the thespian haven are adorned with middle-aged laughing people. Men with perma-tans, women with white teeth, everyone appears happy in their skin and at ease with their choice. A mixture of Spanglish echoes around us and I whisper to my husband to stop jigging his legs up and down, this was a job he had done voluntarily on his own time for the past three decades; the only difference now is that he would be paid to do it.
A firm hand is placed on my shoulder and I look up into smiling brown eyes.
‘So, you must be the power behind the throne!’ laughs the stranger in my direction and introduces himself and also what his role is on the board and finally, what would be expected if Marcus was given the job. An attractive lady joins him and warmly kisses me on each cheek. Both members talk passionately about their time in the British speaking Theatre then lead us through velvet clad stage doors into a hub of adrenalin filled activity.
On stage a rehearsal is taking place. Young and old high kick their way into the wings while a director booms instructions from the front row of the auditorium. I look up at the lights and breathe in the smell of the greasepaint. Teenagers with languid expressions awaiting their time in the spotlight come to life as they are released from the confines of backstage and leap like adrenalin fuelled antelopes onto the boards.
Turning to my husband I smile but he is lost within the lighting control desk, eyes alight with all the possibilities ahead akin to Mr Spock faced with the new and updated Starship Enterprise. I look towards the man and the woman who greeted us on arrival; both look at ease with the roles they have been given in order to keep this well preserved British Galleon afloat in a Spanish ocean.
The man senses my gaze and leans against the door. ‘So what are you going to do for work here?’ He asks enquiringly? Before my brain has time to engage with my mouth my truth tourettes steps in to reply on my behalf
‘In all honesty… I have absolutely no bloody idea’
He laughs and nods his heads towards my husband
‘Well, the job’s his if he wants it, his references are excellent, I think you’ll both fit in well here, what you think?’
I look him in the eye and smile and reply on behalf of my husband
‘Sir, I think we’d both like that very much’.
(For more information on the upcoming theatrical season please follow the link below)
To be continued – Episode 6