Divorced Divas pg 5:
Alessandra waves away my protestations with a click of her tongue. ‘Boy, do you have a lot to learn, girl. Number one; your husband asked you for a divorce, not the other way around. For that, he needs to pay. The solution? Stop contributing. Close your cheque book tighter than your legs.’
I fight the urge to tell her that Brad stopped trying to prize open my legs years ago.
‘Number two; you need to face up to the fact that you are now back on the meat market. You must have the ability to compete with all the other desperados out there.’
Really? This is going too far! I am not a desperado!
‘The solution? You have a great friend named Alessandra Agostini—the buyer for my family-owned fashion empire. We have enough sample racks to fill several warehouses. I also have friends and contacts; stylists, hairdressers, make-up artists, even cosmetic surgeons…’
‘Oh, hold on a minute, I…’
She nods her head. ‘Okay, perhaps we can save that for the future. You’re only thirty-eight. You’ve got another couple of years left in that face yet. Although, you are aware that your body needs attention, aren’t you, Olivia?’
‘Gee, thanks,’ I reply, my lemony smile matching the lemony taste in my mouth.
‘But, Olivia. We have much work to do.’ She scans me from head to toe, her perfectly shaped eyebrows arching as she rises to the challenge.
At this stage, I find I’m feeling a little like the runt of a puppy litter. But she just may have something. Imagine me transforming into a clone of Alessandra? Ha! Brad would eat his bloody words. I begin salivating like the aforementioned mutt, and I decide I want this. I want my friend to give me an overhaul. I stand, entranced, and take her offered hand, following her firm butt swaggering confidently in the direction of her massive walk-in wardrobe. Alessandra begins to pull out clothes, all with new tags swinging from them.
‘Samples. All way too large for me,’ she mutters before tossing them in my direction. I choose to ignore her not-so-veiled suggestion that I am the size of a baby elephant. Sitting on her king-size, satin-covered bed, with a nod of her regal head, she orders me to begin the fashion parade.
‘I suppose you have an okay body,’ she says when I strip down to my undies, and I’m not sure whether to thank her for this comment or cry. Okay is below average in my book. Certainly this is true of the real estate industry in which I work. Okay means a property is barely liveable; one step down from dilapidated, a knock-down, land value only. I shrug on an outfit that reminds me of a celluloid super hero. Dressed in the all-in-one, cobalt, Lycra pantsuit, I take one glance at my image in the full-length mirrored wardrobe and let out a long groan. Toni Collette singing ‘Waterloo’ in Muriel’s Wedding comes to mind…