There I was with the adjudicator (Erwin), cash in hand, on my knees when the curtain opened unexpectedly.
Not that I was to blame or that he was involved in a transaction of any kind, but try telling that to the other festival participants as they began to jeer and throw scrunched up programs at us. Really, there is a perfectly logical explanation for this if they would just calm down. I put the trophy to one side and turned to face my accusers. Hey, its a small town.
Before you lose interest thinking to yourself "what a tired old cliche" consider this: my wife's brother's son goes to school with Erwin's sisters niece - on her husband's side - and they are going on camp in the morning on the bus to the capital and my nephew - typical - forgot his wallet and called my sister who passed on the message to Linda, that's Erwin's mother with whom she plays bingo on fridays at the Palace on Moorabool St. Now when she rang Erwin, he was in the middle of the award ceremony where my play "Boxing Day" was receiving an award so he couldn't take the call. He did however pass me his phone and after getting the story I agreed to pass some cash to Erwin who would transfer a corresponding amount into his sister's niece's account over his phone and she could give the cash to the boy at the bus in the morning. Got that? Only the niece wasn't so nice and wasn't speaking to said boy and no amount of persuasion would entice her to pass on the money. That's where things got interesting.
The niece's boyfriend plays footy with the brother of the boy's cousin who was on the other bus going to meet them in the capital, so they agreed via TXT to catch up with the boy at the lunchtime rest stop - where both busses were scheduled to meet up - and give their ATM card to the brother who would pass it to the cousin who would give it to the boy to use, in exchange for a bit of a bonus payment for their efforts. By now I was running out of cash so I TXT to my sister who transferred more cash to the account of the brother of the boys cousin. Problem solved. Though I'm still going to have to recover the dough from that little piece or work my sisters niece.
The transaction was going smoothly until, lifting out the notes for the boy to reimburse Erwin, I dropped my wallet and the coins ran out over the stage behind the curtain. As I bent to collect them the award was announced and the curtain swung wide.
I'm just glad Ewrin managed to tuck his shirt back in so quickly... but that's another story!