Sunday, 04 May 2008

A night at the theatre

Back to my time in London. My friend (like I said, I don´t do acquaintances), Martin McCutcheon (that´s Martin, not Martine) was appearing in a play at the Pacific Playhouse while I was in town, so naturally I said I´d go along.

Cut to my birthday celebrations in London. My friend Warwick and I were making plans to see each other again. "I´m busy tomorrow," he said. "Going to a play." "What play?" I asked, curious. Turned out we were both going to see Martin´s play, and London was starting to feel as small as Cape Town.

It was ages since I´d seen any theatre, and Kikia Te Poa was just the ticket. Boers, Kiwis and rugby, not my usual style, but it worked. Aaron Hapuku was outstanding as the half-Maori/half Irish soldier, and Martin held his own as a boer commando, although I did tease him about his Afrikaans accent (more than passable to an English ear, but may not have cut it in Pretoria).

However, I was somewhat distracted by the conviction that the people sitting opposite us in the small theatre were none other than JM and Dot. Considering the man has written about rugby, and that it was a play with a South African connection, this hypothesis seemed not inconceivable. I asked Warwick for his opinion. "You would know," he said. But in the absence of my glasses (a story for another post), I didn´t.

So, after the play, I covertly followed the couple out of the theatre to see if I could garner any further clues. A few metres down the road, I realised this was supremely stalkerish behaviour, and decided a couple of drinks and post-performance shmoozing was the more dignified option... The "night I saw JM and Dot at the theatre" still makes for a pretty good story; who cares if it´s "true" or not?

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