I have just had to have a quick word with Vera. Her of the ex KGB fame and 6 foot in her stocking feet. She either didn’t get it or was playing dumb! Probably a bit of both. She was also terrifying to be around and is having a ” bit of a thing” with Yuri her co-Leader. I am not sure if its appropriate. Having demanded single rooms, their Host Family tells me that Vera is often heard scurrying across the corridor late at night and enter Yuri’s bedroom without even a knock. Imagine! Sacre Bleu….
That was not something I was going to find easy to speak to her about. After all, her private life is her private life and I cant be held accountable for the behaviour of Leaders, especially Russian ones, after curfew. But it seemed to be the final straw for her Hosts especially after she used and abused all of the strawberries in the Fridge, which were to be for a Pavlova ( lovely Russian dish.. ) later that night.
Yes it would appear that Rita has a cold and thought she would take the day off and watch some crap on Daytime TV. Having gone through the Housewives of Atlanta; New York and Orange County she took herself off to the kitchen to make a coffee… or if you are Spanish, “Café Ole! ” ( think about it) Whilst in there she noticed the strawberries and for no reason that I could really fathom she took them out of the fridge and placed them on her face, like a home grown face mask. Apparently this didn’t happen until she was back lounging on the sofa when she carefully placed all of the strawberries over her face. Added to that, because she had a cold she had found 2 Vick Nasal sticks and stuck them up each nostril. Yes, it was quite a look I can tell you!! The Host Family having returned home early, firstly screamed at the prone Russian on the sofa and secondly her said screams turned to anger when she realised that Vera had tonight’s dessert all over her mush! When Vera turned to see what the noise was about, most of the strawberries fell onto the white sofa and it was about that moment that you would hope and pray you had paid extra for the Scotchguard.
Later after Vera described the scene to me she lit up a cigarette ( despite my strong anti smoking campaign all around me) and having sucked in, in a very aggressive manner, declared ” Stupid woman. What all fuss about? We could have washed red berries ( strawberries!) and put them back on meringue. No one would know”….
It didn’t seem worth pursuing because Vera then went on to tell me that they had Artic Roll for Pudding anyway, so who cares about red berries…
I decided to call it a day and said I would see her in the morning when all of the group were off to London . ” Don’t be late Vera” I said as I left. ” We have to ensure we leave on time”. ” I wont be late. Russians are NEVER late. Ask the Germans at Stalingrad. HA HA ” and she clicked her very high stilettoes and left me in a cloud of nicotine smoke with thoughts of the dangers of passive smoking around my head
The next day came all too soon and as you can imagine, everyone was on the coach save for Yuri and Vera. Whilst the waiting was becoming embarrassing, and the Chinese group were up for leaving without them, they strolled around the corner. Yuri seeming my icy glare ( I borrowed that from Vera) increased his gait and shot up the stairs in double quick time but Vera, dear Vera only walked at the same pace and seemed oblivious to everyone waiting for her. Secretly I think she just loved to make an entrance. However, when she got nearer to me I could see that I was going to have another difficult conversation with her before the group could leave, even now.
” eh Good Morning Vera….I was wondering if I could ask you to swop coats and take the heavy black jacket that you left in the reception last week.”
“Niet. I have a coat. This coat. I like this coat.”
“Yes, you do Vera but I don’t think its appropriate to wear it in the circumstances, do you?”
Now Vera is nothing if not quick to catch onto a situation and she knew exactly what I was aiming at but nothing was going to get her to change coats. ” Vera, I really, really, need you to take that coat off in case they don’t allow you in and then we wont have enough adults to supervise your, yes YOUR students! ”
“Why you want me to change coat?”
“Vera, you know full well, why you have to change the coat! Please Vera, just take the coat off” I was near to begging now. I could hear it in my voice and hated myself. I had even got to the point where I thought I might have to wrestle it off her if she didn’t comply.
“Niet, Niet, Niet. Driver. Close door!” and with that she climbed the steps and sat down. The coach driver, slightly mystified, but also running late did exactly as he was told and off they went …….
Now before you all wonder why I asked Vera to change her coat, I need to tell you that the whole group was off to London Zoo. Yes they were all going off to see the endangered species for the day. And yes, you got it, what did Vera have as her coat? Yep… another bloody endangered species on her back. I am not sure if she thought it amusing or just plain “ didn’t get it!” but wearing an Artic Wolf Coat on your back and then subscribing to the ” Save the Polar Bear” Campaign is just damm contrary and asking for trouble..
I didn’t hear any more although I am reliably informed that when the group returned,
Vera seemed to be wearing a plain black anorak and no one
seemed to know what had become of the Artic Wolf Coat. I rest my case…. I think.