I headed for the nearest refreshment stand in search of anything to assuage my hunger. The choices, unfortunately were cookie, cookie or cookie. I opted for a Big Cookie , paid my $4(!) for a single cookie(!), slung my vintage evening bag -- seventy years old and a hand-me-down from my mother -- across my arm and began to make my way through the wine-sipping crowd. The cookie was ridiculously big, and cake-like, and I decided to break off a piece instead of taking a bite from the whole thing. When I did that, a big chunk crumbled off and fell -- ah! Dinner on the floor! Did it again, and another chunk fell to crumbs at my feet. Damn. At least it wasn't very good. Tasted like whoever the baker was substituted oil for butter to cut costs, and didn't add any salt to compensate. Bland damn thing, even with the chocolate chips.
The cookie was crumbly, I was grumbly and still hungry. Then someone pointed to me, pointed to the carpet and said, "I think you lost something."
About four steps back was my iPhone. As I stooped to pick it up, one person, and another, and then another stepped in front of me -- as if choreographed -- hands extended with currency. What the? For me??!! I couldn't figure out what was happening, but as long as people were stepping out to hand me cash, I was going to grab it.
Then I figured it out: after I paid for the Big Cookie, the ancient clasp (shaped like a rose, gold-toned) had failed, and my vintage silk evening bag, slung near my elbow, was swinging wide and free. And I, (as Gretel), while attempting to negotiate my Big! Cookie! was leaving a trail of not only crumbs and cookie chunks but five-dollar bills as well.
After a good long laugh, I headed back to my seat. As the curtain rose for Act II, I had a short-lived moment of panic, thinking "Keys!" In the darkened performance hall, I reached my hands into the shallows of the purse: credit card, driver's license, lip gloss, phone and, yes, keys. Whew.
The whole story would've been much better, of course, if I'd ended up with more cash than I started with, and even better yet if each handing-over of cash was accompanied by an aria excerpt. Come on people! Be dramatic!
But I don't wish to appear ungrateful.
So thank-you to the good people of Seattle, thank-you taffeta-skirted opera-goers!