• After striking an advertising deal, it's time to party
“Would you like to meet up today? After work?” Alan asks.
“Let me check my schedule,” I respond, looking at my empty calendar. “The soonest I’m free is Thursday,” I lie.
Screw the books. How do you disappear into thin air and expect me to be waiting patiently like a good wife to be at your beck and call?
“Thursday it is,” he says, sounding deflated at the three-day wait. Good, he’s eager to see me.
I hang up and finish the memo, outlining the new commission and bonus structure for my boss. I email it to him for his approval. He responds an hour later, giving me the go-ahead. With a grin on my face, I set up a meeting with Diana’s husband. He is free on Thursday. I’ll finish with him and then meet up with Alan.
His office is beautiful, located in the trendier parts of Upper Hill. I sit at the reception, patiently waiting to see him. I‘m ushered in a few minutes later. Diana’s husband is tall. He is dressed in slacks and a checkered blazer; you can see his muscles through the fabric, he clearly works out.
“Hi, I’m Chris,” he says, taking my hand into a firm grip.
“Samantha,” I respond, taking in his appearance. He’s hot!
“Please sit,” he says, waving to the couch.
I sit down, taking in being in the office of one of the richest men in the country. There’s a knock on the door and a gentleman walks in. Early 30s, sharp suit.
“This is our marketing guy,” says Chris.
I know the name. My team has been trying to get a meeting with him for years with no success. And now he has been summoned to meet me! I love this.
The next hour, we discuss how my editorial team can complement the ads they will be running with us. By the time we are done, we have agreed to the terms of the contract and they are officially on board.
“Let’s celebrate!” Chris says. “Drinks?” he asks.
Oh, yes, this part. The schmooze with the new client. I can’t say no. “Yes, of course. Where?” I ask.
“Here is fine,” he says and walks over to the drinks cabinet.
“You can go, I’m sure you have a lot on your desk,” he says to the marketing guy.
He leaves us alone. “Thanks for standing up for my wife the other day, I really appreciate it,” he says, handing me a glass of wine.
“It was nothing,” I respond, taking the glass.
My relationship with alcohol has changed. I don’t see the point of it. But drinkers like to be in the company of other drinkers, and this guy has given me a huge payday. And the product we will have on the pages of our magazine is this wine, so... I can have a drink with him.
One drink turned into two into three. By drink four, it was dark outside and in the distance, I could see the city lights. I was quite tipsy and Chris had launched into what he calls his musical journey through the decades. His music system let out vibrations that reverberated round the room as he took me through a wine lesson.
“I’ll give you a beginner’s guide to wine,” he had said earlier. “It’s made of grapes but not the type you’ll find in supermarkets.”
Wines grapes, he went on to tell me, are smaller, sweeter, have thick skin and contain seeds.
The most planted wine grape in the world is Cabernet Sauvignon. It was the first glass he gave me. A full-bodied red grape that tastes of black cherry, black currant, baking spices and cedar.