I don’t know about you, but I spend my days dreaming about holidays. The places I’d love to visit. The things I would do once I get there. What I’d eat. The spa treatments I would get. The museums I would visit. The Instagram stories I’d post. The hotel toiletries I would steal.
In other words, normal stuff that normal people do when they go on holiday. Or think about when they’re thinking about going on holiday.
Then there are people for whom a holiday means trekking through sub-zero temperatures up the side of a very steep mountain.
“Really? Why?” Saffy once said at a party to a guy who said he’d just climbed to Base Camp at Mount Everest.
“I’ve never felt more alive!” he told her, to which she said, that was technically true only because an almighty avalanche hadn’t come sliding down the mountain to sweep him and his friends away.
“You were playing the odds with your life! Didn’t you watch Everest?” she asked severely, having recently revisited what she felt was a criminally-neglected movie because she’d had another late night craving for Jake Gyllenhaal. “Moral of the movie is: look, don’t touch.” She paused and gave the matter some thought before adding, as her bosom inflated, “A bit like my breasts, actually!”
Recently, at breakfast, Amanda, who was scrolling through her news feed, suddenly stopped and gasped. “Oh, God…”
Saffy, never one to waste an ounce of drama, immediately jumped to a conclusion. “No, no, no!” she moaned. “Jake’s dead?”
Amanda rolled her eyes. “Honestly, rein it in, RuPaul! No! This bunch of divers in Hawaii were… wait… were ‘watching a school of tiger sharks feast on a dead whale when a much bigger fish appeared out of the depths. A 6m-long Great White shark, believed to be one of the largest in the world…’”
“Wait just a second,” Saffy said, holding up a finger. “They were watching a school of tiger sharks feast on a dead whale?! Why would you be watching a school of tiger sharks feast on a dead whale? Were they mad?”
Amanda scanned the article. “It doesn’t say. Oh, yes it does. ‘The rotting whale carcass off the coast of Oahu has drawn packs of divers keen to see the sea life it attracts.’”
“You see,” Saffy said, her face turning pink. “That kind of dumb behaviour is why the human race is going to get wiped off the face of this planet!”
Amanda nodded, secure in the knowledge that the only dumb act anyone could ever accuse her of committing, was once paying a lot of money for a Commes des Garcons dress that looked like it had been sewn by blind kittens on a diet.
“I’ll say,” she said. “But wait, there’s more. The 6m-long white shark…huh, she’s got a name. She’s called Deep Blue!”
“Not Bites Deep?” Saffy asked.
Amanda smirked. “It, uhm… it ‘came up and brushed up against the boat, maybe she's pregnant, maybe she's itchy?’ Ramsey wrote on Instagram. ‘We spent the entire day with her till the sun went down.’ Huh,” Amanda said, looking up. “Apparently Deep Blue has a Twitter account!”
“That’s the most stupid thing I’ve heard all day!” Saffy announced. “‘Maybe she’s itchy?’?! What, and those divers thought they’d be helpful and scratch its side? Seriously, on the Stupid Scale, this is right up there with watching a school of tiger sharks feast on a dead whale in the first place!”
“Oh,” Amanda added, “it also says that ‘state wildlife officials have warned on Facebook for divers to stay away lest sharks mistake them for food’! Seriously? State wildlife officials have to tell you that you shouldn’t watch tigers sharks feast?”
“I bet they’re Harvard graduates,” Saffy said, pretending not to notice Amanda’s icy glare. “I mean, that’s like going to watch zombies have dinner! Has no one watched The Walking Dead? You don’t go towards zombies! The correct direction is away from! Put that on Deep Blue’s Twitter feed!”
Later, when Saffy repeated the story at work, Sharyn shook her head and sighed. “Did the article say the divers were what nationality?”
Saffy shrugged, the thought never having occurred to her.
“Must be ang moh, I think,” Sharyn concluded. “Only ang moh will swim around in the sea and watch shark makan. Our people will be on dry land shopping at Plah-dah! Dat’s why hor, there are so many billion Chinese people in the world, and the ang moh population is dropping. Dey all in the sea being eaten by shark!”
Saffy says she laughed all day.