OVER THERE

 

Written last century (almost); posted with (faint) hope, improvement during the  pandemic isolation? 

OVER THERE by Cliff Ellen.

SCENE 1.   A MIDDLE CLASS HOUSE IN SUBURBAN AUSTRALIA. MOLLY IS IN THE LOUNGE-ROOM PORING OVER TRAVEL BROCHURES. FRANK IS OFFSTAGE, AND CAN BE HEARD SINGING..”There’ll be blue birds over, the white cliffs of Dover” OR WHATEVER..

MOLLY-Frank. Come here.

FRANK(OFF) Coming. [“Tomorrow, just you wait and see”]

MOLLY...Frank!

FRANK(ENTERS WITH A VERY LARGE THERMOS FLASK, AND TWO LARGE BOTTLES OF WATER) I’m here. Don’t panic.

MOLLY-This one has a balcony darling. Look.

FRANK-How many stars?

MOLLY-A balcony and a swimming pool. 

FRANK-Paris is very expensive. Can we take this large thermos?

MOLLY-We haven’t got enough room.

FRANK-What about water?

MOLLY-We’re going to Europe Frank, not Sydney. 

FRANK-It’s not safe over there.

MOLLY-It’s not safe anywhere.

FRANK-It is here.

MOLLY-Don’t be  ridiculous.

FRANK-Bloody big step.

MOLLY-You don’t want to go.

FRANK-I’m being careful.

MOLLY-You checked on the internet.

FRANK-They want you to go. 

MOLLY-Why?

FRANK-If we cark it they save on two pensions.

MOLLY-We’re not on the pension.

FRANK-We will be soon. But if anything happened-

MOLLYI-I’m not listening. 

FRANK-Straight from Hepburn Springs Moll. Best water in the world. 

MOLLY-It’s so romantic. Paree. City of light, art, romance. Hotel de Fieubert! We’ve waited all our lives for this. 

FRANK-Lotto tonight. I have a feeling!

MOLLY-First time for everything.

FRANK-We’ll go business class if I win.

MOLLY-We'll go first class..

FRANK-We could go to Burleigh Heads-get a 5 star. Go on one of those Seniors bus tours. 

MOLLY-Not with me you wont.

FRANK-Wear my white sneakers. Play the 2 cent machines all night at Jupiters Moll.                                                                                          

MOLLY-A balcony. Paris. Roma. Nouveau-riche. Architecture. Atmosphere. Picasso. And only $30 a night extra for 4 nights.

FRANK-Per person. See? P.P. That’s $240. I’m the financial planner petal.

MOLLY-You’re a public servant.

FRANK-I’m a financial Advisor!

MOLLY-For Centrelink?

FRANK-Why do we need a balcony anyway?   

MOLLY-It’s about fulfilling dreams. Once in a lifetime.

FRANK-My dream is to save a quid. The dollar’s going down like the big dipper. You can’t trust the Government.

MOLLY-You voted for them.

FRANK- It’s about survival. 

MOLLY-You’re not Bourke and Wills.

FRANK-What about our trip to The Alice? 

MOLLY-On a bus!

FRANK-An air conditioned mercedes coach!

MOLLY-I want to fly Frank. Fly like a bird.

FRANK-Bloody sparrows. 

MOLLY-I want to sit on my balcony in my Chanel black negligee,  overlooking Paris, and drink French wine. Like a movie star.

FRANK-Do Woolworths have Supermarkets over there?

MOLLY-Morning swims after a long  walk.

FRANK- London! Paris! Mike-onos! 

MOLLY-It’s Mykonos. 

FRANK(KISSES MOLLY ON THE NECK) I’ll swim when we get to Meek-onos.

MOLLY-It’s my money too Frank.

FRANK-Find a nice 2 star - with breakfast. 

MOLLY-Don’t I have a say? 

FRANK-You- are- the boss!  

MOLLY-When it suits you. 

FRANK-Something simple -with a telly. 

MOLLY   I’m not watching television overseas.

FRANK-We wont be out gallivanting every night.

MOLLY-We have to eat.

FRANK-That wont take all night.

MOLLY-We might be inside gallivanting?

FRANK-Don’t forget to pack the vegemite.

MOLLY-You don’t eat vegemite.

FRANK-Foreign food love. I might have to. 

MOLLY-Why don’t we gallivant now? 

FRANK-I want to watch the news.

MOLLY-You’re not watching television overseas.

FRANK-I can watch while you sightsee. Watch a French movie. Juliette Binoche. Catherine Deneuve. 

MOLLY-It’s all in French.

FRANK-Who cares?

MOLLY-It’s so exciting. Vino and a French movie. Nookies on the balcony.

FRANK-Nookies?

MOLLY-Sex darling, remember?

FRANK-Vaguely.                                                                                                                           

MOLLY-Whose fault is that?

FRANK-Who said no last night?

MOLLY-I beg  your pardon!

FRANK-Were you asleep?

MOLLY-Cheeky bugger.

FRANK-Travel makes you grow. We’ll be ten feet bloody tall.

MOLLY-Let’s have nookies now. 

FRANK-It’s only 5 o'clock.[ MOLLY MAKES A MOVE]

MOLLY-An overseas entree.

FRANK-Hells bells. Anyone could walk in. 

MOLLY-I’ll lock the front door. 

FRANK-Wait till after the news.

MOLLY-Frank!

FRANK-I’m keen love, really. Not right this minute.

MOLLY-You’ve jumped the fence.

FRANK-The kids would have a heart attack if they caught us.

MOLLY-I’m sure they know-as long as we don’t mention it.

FRANK-They can go for their lives, but we must forever remain respectable.

MOLLY  Did you want to know about their sex habits?.

FRANK-Our kids don’t have sex..

MOLLY-You’ll be king in a 4 star.

FRANK-Not Paris. God! $300 a night! Athens only eh?

MOLLY-And Bangkok? I want the Amari! 5 star. They’re giving us a day free, so we only have to pay for two.

FRANK-Bangkok’s full of drugrunners.

MOLLY-Drugrunners stay in one star. It’s an adventure! We’re explorers! I’m so excited. Bangkok. Exotica. Shopping. We’ll bring lotsof presents home for the kids. 

FRANK-Bob hasn’t given me a father’s day present in 5 years. 

MOLLY-Bob’s not into presents.

FRANK-He is when they’re for him. Elizabeth’s 35. When do we switch roles?

MOLLY-Frank!

FRANK-OK. Athens and Bangkok only.

MOLLY-It’s my money too Mr financial advisor.

FRANK-I am not bloody deaf darling.

MOLLY-You never listen.

FRANK-I’m listening now.                                                      

MOLLY-Men have selective hearing.

FRANK-We just differ at times.

MOLLY-Directly related to your pocket.

FRANK-(FRANK KISSES) What about a second chance?

MOLLY-London, Paris, Rome. We might see the Pope. I’ve dreamt about this trip for years. Terrazzo tiled floors. Room service. Balconies. A pool. The theatre. 

FRANK-I’m feeling a bit randy. 

MOLLY-Baguettes. French food. World travellers. For seven whole glorious weeks. 

(MOLLY GLIDES AROUND THE ROOM.) Four stars? (AND GLIDING FRANK TO THE BEDROOM)

 FRANK(PICKING UP THE THERMOS) I really think we’ll need this thermos.

MOLLY-As long as you carry it darling.

FRANK-Maybe take three bottles of water? 

MOLLY-Just us and...oblivion.

FRANK-You eat vegemite.

MOLLY-Lock the front door.

FRANK-They’d ring first wouldn’t they?

MOLLY-They would darling. (AND OFF)

BLACKOUT.    

(OFF-DURING THE BLACKOUT) 

FRANK: Should I close the garage? 

MOLLY: What for? 

FRANK: If they see the car they’ll know we’re home.  

MOLLY: Shush darling. 

FRANK: What if they didn’t ring?

MOLLY: Will you put that bloody thermos down.

 FRANK-Ouch. That hurt.

 

 

SCENE 2. FRANK AND MOLLY ARE ABOUT TO LEAVE FOR THE AIRPORT.  MOLLY, CARRYING HER PRECIOUS CAMERA, HAS A PRACTICAL BACKPACK ON, A SMALL CASE WITH WHEELS AND A PULL OUT HANDLE. FRANK’S LUGGAGE CONSISTS OF A VERY LARGE SUITCASE ON DETACHABLE METAL WHEELS, AND AN OLD CARRY BAG. 

FRANK-I can’t find the bloody tickets. (CALLS) Where did you put the tickets Moll?

MOLLY(ENTERING, WITH CAMERA. BACKPACK ON) In your jacket with our passports. You’re not bringing that dreadful carry bag?

FRANK-It’s got all my pills in it. Books, currency converter, disposable toilet seat covers, travel pillow, diary, pens, Lonely Planet, umbrella, binoculars, glasses, water-

MOLLY-Morning fresh?

FRANK-Sorry? 

MOLLY-Hurry up. Taxi’s due any minute.

FRANK-Why couldn’t Bob drive us? Or Elizabeth?

MOLLY-They have jobs to go to.

FRANK-We always drive them. 

MOLLY-Will you hurry up! 

FRANK-Settle down. Tickets. Money. Credit cards. Phone card. Shit! My reading glasses. Where are the bastards? I’ve lost my glasses.

MOLLY-Did you cancel the paper?  

FRANK-(SFX. TAXI HORN) Yes. (CALLS) We’re coming. I can’t find my glasses love.

MOLLY-Have you got your teeth in?

FRANK-Bloody glasses. They’ve disappeared! 

MOLLYHave you got the phone?

FRANK-(FINDS GLASSES) I did not put them there.

MOLLY-Phone!

FRANK-What? Yes, I’ve got the bloody phone. I’m not stupid. Shit, our passports. We got our passports?

MOLLY-With our tickets. Don’t panic. 

FRANK-I’m exhausted before I start.

MOLLY-I want to take a photo.

FRANK(TAXI HORN) I’m coming, I’m coming. Don’t panic. Stay calm. Did you turn the gas off? 

MOLLY-You did.

FRANK-I feel sick.

MOLLY-Will you hurry up!

FRANK-I hope the pilot’s had an early night.

MOLLY-Stay there.

FRANK-(CARRYING THE LUGGAGE. STOPS. LOOKS.) I’m going to miss the dog.

MOLLY-(CAMERA) Stay still. I’m setting the timer.

FRANK-You'll miss “The Bold and the Beautiful”.

MOLLY-Frank!

FRANK-OK. OK.  

MOLLY-Stay still.

FRANK-These cases are heavy. (SFX TAXI. FRANK CALLS) We’re coming. You’d think he was paying.

MOLLY-The timer’s not working.

FRANK-(MOVES) Give it to me.

MOLLY-(SHARPLY) Don’t you dare touch my camera. Here, it’s working. Don’t move. (MOLLY HURRIES INTO POSITION.) 

FRANK-I desperately need to pee.

MOLLY-You can pee at the airport.

FRANK-It’s my prostate. 

MOLLY-Smile darling.  (FRANK FORCES A SMILE-THEY WAIT 5 SECONDS. THE TAXI HORN HONKS)

FRANK(TURNS AND SHOUTS) We’re coming. Bloody idiot.  (JUST AS THE CAMERA CLICKS)

FRANK-Shit...sorry love.

BLACKOUT- FILM...MAP OF THE WORLD-THE WORM ZIPPING ACROSS THE ROUTE.

 

 

 

SCENE 3. LONDON.   A LONDON STREET IN THE WEST END. MOLLY CARRIES A BOOKLET ON LONDON A-Z. FRANK IS STRUGGLING UNDER THE WEIGHT OF HIS LUGGAGE AND MOLLY’S WHEELY CASE. 

FRANK-Struth almighty. Where is the bloody street? Is it in hiding.I’ve lost a stone. 

MOLLY-That wont hurt you.

FRANK-Unbelievable. 23 hours on an aeroplane-

MOLLY-At least there were no terrorists.

FRANK-He looked like a bloody terrorist.

MOLLY-Thousands of people have beards Frank.

FRANK-Not with a turban on their head they don’t.

MOLLY-You’re hopeless Frank.

FRANK-A screaming 2 year old monster alongside us, invisible air hostesses, and now babes in the woods. Lost in space love. This is traffic chaos. 

MOLLY-You wanted the double decker. 

FRANK-I wanted to get the feel of the place. History darling. The will to learn.

MOLLY-You didn’t want to pay for a taxi.

FRANK-(FRANK STEPS OUT ONTO THE ROAD-SFX A HONKING MOTORIST) How about a bit of goodwill for visitors you mongrel. You see that Moll? Nearly bowled me over. Heathrow. World famous airport? No beer before 10am. I could have been dying of thirst.

MOLLY-(STRUGGLING WITH HER MAP) Drink some of your water.  

FRANK-It’s packed away. 

MOLLY-I think it’s this way. 

FRANK-Come on woman, I’m exhausted. I can’t take much more. My feet are killing me. The cushions on the balls are dead.

MOLLY-I beg  your pardon?

FRANK-The balls of my feet. Kids on bloody aeroplanes. No chance ofthem getting economy class syndrome.

MOLLY-You check it then. Here. (MOLLY GIVES HIM THE MAP.) Wasn’t the boy’s fault. Poor little fellow. Look at your shirt. It’s filthy. 

FRANK-You ordered the spaghetti Bolognese. I’m not a contortionist. (FONDLING HIS MONEY BELT) Only 47 days till we get back to Tullamarine.

MOLLY-What are you doing?

FRANK-It’s this money belt love. It’s pressing on my prostate.

MOLLY-You look like you’re playing with yourself.

FRANK-It’s falling down my pants. 

MOLLY-You look like a pervert. Stay calm. You’ll have another of your panic attacks.

FRANK-Should have slipped him a Valium with his bottle. I don’t want this. (HE GIVES MOLLY THE MAP) I hate looking like a tourist. Standing smack bang in the middle of the West End.  

MOLLY-The print’s too small Frank. 

FRANK-London A-Z. In microprint. Thomas doesn’t play up like that.

MOLLY-The boy had an earache. My glasses are here somewhere.  It’s the next street after this one. This is Gordon I think. Remember, we’re having an adventure. It’s exciting. London. We must telephone home soon. 

FRANK-Let’s find a pub and get some bearings.

MOLLY-Stay calm darling. 

FRANK-I’m not the one with blood pressure.

MOLLY-You’ll get nauseous. You know how you are. See? What did I tell you? There’s Gordon. It’s the next one up. We’ll check in, have a cold beer and a nice shower. 

FRANK-I’d kill for a cigarette.

MOLLY-You’ve gone 4 months, you’re not starting now. How is your back?

FRANK-Numb.

MOLLY-Did you bring the Dencorub.

FRANK-I brought the whole bloody house.

MOLLY-I’ll massage it when we get there.

FRANK-Just one smoke darling, pretty please?

MOLLY-No!

FRANK-(TO PASSER-BY) Heartless. Excuse me mate, I was wondering if you could help us? (FRANK IS FIDDLING WITH HIS MONEY BELT AGAIN). We’re looking for Gower Street. PASSER-BY(PASSER-BY STARES SUSPICIOUSLY AT THE SIGHT) Sorry, I don’t carry spare coin. (LOOKS AT MOLLY QUIZZICALLY)

MOLLY-He’s not with me. (PASSER-BY BACKS OFF WARILY, EXITING.)

FRANK-This is the West End isn’t it mate? Did you see that Moll? Bloody pommies. They wonder why we have a go at them. (CALLS) Manners cost nothing mate. No wonder you can’t play cricket.

(THE MOBILE PHONE RINGS. A STRUGGLE TO GET IT.) MOLLY-(VERY LOUD.) Hello. Hello. Hello darling. We’re here! It’s Elizabeth, Frank. Hello darling. It’s Elizabeth Frank.

 FRANK-I heard you. (TO HIMSELF) So did half of London.

MOLLY-Oh It’s wonderful. Yes. We’re in London...Yes darling, I can wait.

FRANK.....Wait for what?

MOLLY-She’s just topping up her glass of wine.

FRANK-Who’s phone is she ringing from?

MOLLY-Shush!. (PHONE) Yes. We’re in London! No I’m fine darling-got a bit dizzy on the plane so I took a pill. I feel fine now. Don’t worry. How is little Sarah? Did she. Frank, Sarah said Dada. Isn’t she a treat. Did you take a picture? Oh, isn’t she a treasure.

FRANK-Who’s phone is she ringing from? 

MOLLY-Oh it’s so big. All hustle and bustle. So exciting. Can’t wait to get to Oxford Street and all the shops.

FRANK-Ask her if she’s calling from our phone.

MOLLY-The trip over was wonderful.                                                                               

FRANK-Ask her to check if you turned the gas off.

MOLLY-Your father loved it. Silly old fart.

FRANK-Who?                                                                               

MOLLY-Shush! I can’t hear. (TO ELIZABETH)  Sorry love? (5 SECOND PAUSE) 

FRANK...What’s she saying? 

MOLLY-She’s on call waiting. 

FRANK-What!

MOLLY-Shush!

FRANK-I don’t believe it. 

MOLLY-Hello? Hello love, yes, I’m still here. What? Lizzy?  Lizzy? Oh, it’s cut out.Frank, it’s cut out.

FRANK-(TO HIMSELF) Thank you, Lord!

MOLLY-The battery’s run out. You’ll have to get it charged as soon as we get to the hotel. They’ll be worried sick now.

FRANK-Was she ringing from her place?

MOLLY-She’s at our house having a sleepover. 

 

BLACKOUT.

 

 

 

 

SCENE 4. LONDON STREET.THE FOLLOWING DAY. A BACK STREET IN THE WEST END. MOLLY AND FRANK APPROACH A DOUBLE DECKER BUS. THE DRIVER IS ON A REST BREAK, EATING A SANDWICH.  

FRANK-G’day there mate. What’s the score is with these tourist buses?

(DRIVER FINISHES HIS MOUTHFUL/FOOD) 

 DRIVER...You’re Australian then?

FRANK-Sorry?

DRIVER(LOUD) I say you’re Australian.

FRANKWe’re not deaf mate.

MOLLYFrank! 

DRIVERIt’s the accent you know. I knew a lovely Irish lass went to Australia.

Married an Italian. Asumpta O’Reilly. 

FRANKRed hair and freckles.

DRIVERQuite beautiful she was.

FRANKI’ll keep an eye out. Frank’s the name. What’s the score on the sights of London?

DRIVERThat depends I’m afraid, doesn’t it?

FRANKDoes it?

DRIVERMy very word. What do you have in mind? London’s a very big

city. Got everything here you know. The world’s most liveable city.

FRANKThis is my wife Molly.

DRIVERLovely indeed. Derrick is the name Molly. Welcome to London.

MOLLYThank you Derrick.

DRIVERWhat particular spots do you wish to see in our historic city Molly, our teeming Metropolis. The “centre” of the Universe. 

 

MOLLYTrafalgar Square? Big Ben, Parliament House, the Palace of course-

DRIVERDefinitely.

FRANKMy wife’s a Royalist.

 

MOLLYWe’re talking history Frank.

DRIVERThe will to learn Molly. The philosophy of nature.

MOLLYSo true Derrick.

DRIVERThe art of learning is to conceal learning.

FRANKYou’re doing well so far.

MOLLYHe’s a philistine Derrick. 

DRIVERNever you mind Frank.

MOLLYPiccadilly Circus. The Thames-

DRIVERHarrods, Molly?

MOLLYOh yes please.

FRANKNot Harrods darling.

DRIVERWouldn’t be London without Harrods Frank. 

FRANKIt’s a tourist trap.

MOLLYDon’t mind him.

FRANKYou on a commission?

DRIVER I believe it’s called goodwill.

MOLLYListen to the man Frank.

FRANK I’m a lifetime listener.

MOLLY I’m warning you! 

DRIVERAs for seeing them all at the one time. Not that simple I’m afraid.

FRANKAre we talking money?

DRIVERWe are talking economy Frank.

FRANKExcellent!                                                                                                                  

DRIVER(DRONING ON) Four buses you see. All colour coded. Black, yellow, red, and green. Here, see? Here’s a brochure highlighting the four routes. Special colour coding. It’s all here. You keep it Molly. My pleasure. Lovely shoes. But in fact 

 

 

overlapping at various intervals, so that you, the tourist, can board and alight at will. All, may I add, with some pride, for the one 24 hour price. All part of the service Molly. Some tourists, different tastes. Prefer museums, history and the like. Others the theatre, West End, Piccadilly Circus.

 

FRANKWhat’s the damage?

DRIVERNow that’s the trick, isn’t it sir.

FRANKSir? I’ve been upgraded.

MOLLYShut up Frank! 

DRIVER(AND ON) Most tourists buy their tickets in the morning, against my advice. They don’t listen you see Frank. Very few tourists listen, as it happens Molly. 

No offence Frank. 

 

FRANK(NOT LISTENING) Sorry?

DRIVERFlat out like bulls at a gate they are. All day on the go. Exhausted come tea time. Waste half of their 24 hour ticket. Not thinking, you see. Planning Frank!

 

FRANKObviously. 

 

DRIVERThat’s the key. Buy the ticket early afternoon. One o'clock. Have a look see. Please yourself. All afternoon. Rest up. Nice glass of red.  After tea you’re off again. London by night Molly. Very romantic.

 

MOLLYHarrods by night, Derrick.

DRIVERThoroughly recommended Molly. Next morning after a decent kip you’re refreshed! Bangers and eggs. All for the one 24 hour price.

 

MOLLYSounds wonderful.

DRIVERIt can be.

MOLLYDo you mind if I take your photo Derrick?                                                

DRIVER(DERRICK IS CHUFFED) Not at all Molly. Where are you staying?

MOLLYArran House in Gower Street.

DRIVEROoh. Very nice. Lovely outfit.

MOLLYThank you Derrick.

 

 

 

DRIVERFor a lovely lady.

MOLLYFrank, get in close to Derrick. (FRANK NOT KEEN, BUT OBLIGES. TAKES  PHOTO.) Thank you Derrick.

 

DRIVERMy pleasure. (THEY START TO LEAVE) You know, a friend of mine,

his wife had a sister who went to Australia 20 years ago. My friend’s wife

took herself off for a visit over three months ago. Hasn’t come home yet. 

My friend is not complaining. 

FRANKAre you a smoker Derrick? 

MOLLYYou dare. (LEAVING)

FRANK(CALLING) Asumpta O’Reilly.

DRIVERI could have married her Frank.                                                                                                                                                    

MOLLY(THEY WALK AWAY) What a nice man.  

FRANKHe had the hots for you.

MOLLYLondoners are so friendly. 

 

FRANKIt’s likely Mrs Derrick that went to Australia. Bloody purve “Most tourists don’t listen” Wank, wank.

 

MOLLYThe man was a gentleman darling. 

FRANKGo to bed with Derrick and you’d cop a half hour lecture on the best way to do it.

MOLLYYou’re disgusting.

FRANKWhy don’t you go on the red bus first, and I’ll join you on the yellow bus, thereby skipping Harrods? (MOLLY STARES) No? Right. Now we have London sorted. Warm beer, 10 million people, and endless queues. Now we have to figure out how to hold the shower in one hand and the soap in the other. 

 

MOLLYI’ll hold the soap.

FRANKAgain?

MOLLYYou don’t deserve it.

FRANKI’m starting to feel taller already.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------SCENE 5.  A HOTEL ROOM. GOWER STREET, LONDON. MOLLY STUDIES A MUCH LARGER LONDON MAP A-Z. FRANK IS OFFSTAGE...

 

FRANK(CALLING) It doesn’t work love. You said it was easy. 

MOLLYHave you got it strapped properly? 

FRANKYou didn’t tell me about any straps. 

MOLLYBring it here. Silly old goat.

FRANKI can’t see any straps love?

MOLLYThe only time you’re of any use is at tax time. 

FRANK (ENTERING WITH CASE AND TROLLEY TYPE LUGGAGE WHEELS) 

We cart the bloody thing half way around the world-

 

MOLLYGive it to me. (MOLLY ADJUSTS IT)

FRANKYou said we couldn’t do without them. I’ve got to cart this all the way to

Stansted Airport, wherever that is. I haven’t even spotted a service station.

 

MOLLYWhy would we want a service station?

FRANKWe might hire a car.

MOLLYYou’d get lost in the traffic and I’m not driving. There. Try it.

FRANKBloody waste of time.

MOLLYIt saves your hernia .

FRANKI’ve got to cart this thing to the bus stop.

MOLLYWe’ll catch a taxi to the airport. 

FRANKWe will not catch a taxi. Not after your visit to Harrods. 

MOLLYWasn’t it wonderful of Derrick to show me around.

FRANKHe fancied you. I told you didn’t I? Bloody pommy purve.

MOLLYAre you jealous? 

FRANKShould I be? Sometimes I wonder.

 

MOLLYDo you now.

 

 

FRANKWe’ll have to buy another case. They hit the back of my leg when I walk. The right leg. See? 

 

MOLLYWalk carefully darling. 

FRANKThey’re a pain in the bloody neck.

MOLLYThe back of your leg.

FRANKWhat?

MOLLYThe pain. Back of your right leg. Not your neck.

FRANK(MOLLY LAUGHS) Funny darling. Very funny. My legs are sore up here, see. 

 

MOLLYThat’s poor circulation from smoking.

FRANKWe are stuck with these useless heavy wheels for another 6 weeks. What 

about the Greek Islands? All those hills. And Paris, Montmartre. All because you had to borrow them. 

 

MOLLYI was doing it to make it easier for you, Goose.

FRANKThey hit the back of my leg. Post it back. That’s the answer. Not your fault. You were doing your best. You’re a darling. Post the bastard back.

 

MOLLYShould we post the thermos back, and your overcoat, and your weet-bix?

FRANKI’m eating the weet-bix.

MOLLYYou can’t post it back.  

FRANKWe  could say we lost it in Bangkok. She’d believe that. She votes One Nation.

 

MOLLYPack it in the bottom of your underwear case. Put your pillow on top of 

them, and you’re underwear on top of your pillow.

FRANKThen I wont fit my dressing-gown in.

MOLLYPoor baby.

FRANKAnd another thing, the power points don’t work. 

MOLLYWe need an adaptor. 

FRANKI’m not a bloody electrician darling. 

MOLLYI’m making a list of things I want to say to Elizabeth and Bob on the 

phone. Anything you want to add?

FRANKWait till we get to Paris.

MOLLYI’ll call again from Paris.

FRANKYou don’t have to call them both. Call Liz, and let her call Bob.

MOLLYBob would feel left out.

FRANKWhy not send a card? 

MOLLYI’ve already sent cards.

FRANKWhy call then? 

MOLLY Because it’s nice.

FRANK A wonder you didn’t send one to the dog.

MOLLYI did. Where’s the phone?

FRANKRing tomorrow. Offset the cost of a new case.                                             

MOLLYFrank! (FRANK GETS THE PHONE.)

FRANKYou know we’re going to miss the Grand Final.

MOLLYThe Magpies aren’t in it.

FRANKWe wouldn’t be here if they were.

MOLLYThey haven’t been in it for years.

FRANKTell me something I don’t know. Ooh, my leg.

MOLLY(EXITING) Not likely to be in it ever again.

FRANKWhere are you going?

MOLLY(OFF) I’m getting you a valium before you have another panic attack.

FRANKI don’t need a valium.

MOLLY(CALLS) Do as you’re told. Breathe in, count to three.

FRANKI know. I know. 

 

FRANK/MOLLY-(IN UNISON) Breathe out, count to three. Relax.

 

MOLLY(CALLS) From the diaphragm, darling. 

FRANK (MIMICKS MOLLY’S WORDS/NO SOUND). Just one smoke?

SCENE 6. PARIS EIFFEL.  MOLLY HAS COME DOWN FROM THE TOP OF THE EIFFEL TOWER. SHE HAS HER BACKPACK, CAMERA, MAP, AND GUIDE BOOK. FRANK IS OFFSTAGE.

 

MOLLY(A FLIRTATIOUS MOLLY. PIERRE HANDS HER THE CAMERA. WHISPERS TO HER, “Si pourquoi est-ce que nous parlons l’espagnol?” THEY LAUGH. PUNCH LINE/JOKE-”Then why are we talking Spanish?”) 

Thank you Pierre. That  was delightful.

PIERREMy pleasure Mollee. Always a joy to have conversation with a beautiful, intelligent, Mademoiselle.

 

MOLLYNot a Madam?

PIERRENe-ver a Madam, Mademoiselle Mollee. 

MOLLYYou’re a charmer Pierre.

PIERREParis is the city of Amour Mollee. What good fortune for me, your husband is, how you say, crook?

 

MOLLYThere’s a tiger snake in his pocket.

PIERRELucky man. Oui?

MOLLY(LAUGHS) He doesn’t like spending.

PIERRE(KISSES MOLLY ON THE HAND) Aha. Money is for spending Mademoiselle Mollee.  Enjoy. Perhaps we can meet again. 

 

MOLLYSounds good..

PIERRETomorrow. Le Louvre. Oui?

MOLLY(LAUGHS) Oui. Merci...perhaps.

PIERREOui. Oui. Adieu.  (PIERRE EXITS - FRANK ENTERS)

 

FRANKWho was that?

MOLLYA Parisian fellow traveller. Pierre. He took some photos of me up the top.

FRANKKissing your hand?

MOLLYA woman likes to be appreciated.

FRANKI appreciate you dear. 

MOLLYYes darling.

FRANKDid you tell him you’re a grandmother?

MOLLYHe would never have believed it. (LAUGHS) Mademoiselle.                       

FRANKWas he flirting?

MOLLYThe Eiffel Tower. Pronounced Effelle. We’ll be needing a new roll of film shortly.

FRANKI bought three rolls duty free.

MOLLYThree is not enough Frank.

FRANKBloody Notre Dame followed by 1792 steps.

MOLLYYou wouldn’t pay.

FRANKI walked half way. Better view in the Dandenongs.

 

MOLLY(READING) It was completed in 1889 by Gustave Eiffel, originally a 300 metre design by Maurice Koechlin & Emile Nouguier, Eiffel’s engineers, then redesigned to 312 metres by architect Stephen Sauvestre, by adding 

an arch at the bottom. Made an historic monument in 1964.

 

FRANKYou sound like Derrick. Will Crown Casino ever be an historic  monument?

 

MOLLYAre you listening?

FRANKYes darling. Gustave.  My feet are falling off.

MOLLYWe’ll find the Louvre first, then we’ll sit down and have a nice cup of cafe oh latte. Isn’t Paris magical?

 

FRANKCity of illusions. Our money. Now you see it, now you don’t.

MOLLYMade me feel 10 years younger.

 

 

FRANKShould have brought the thermos. Have they got any poker machines here?

MOLLYWe’ll look at the Louvre first. We must see the Louvre. The Mona Lisa,

the Cone, then Pere Lachaise cemetery.

FRANKWhy a cemetery?

MOLLYI have to see Oscar Wilde’s grave. Maria Callas. Collette.

FRANKWe’ll finish up joining Oscar.

MOLLYYou can’t visit Paris without seeing them.

FRANKI haven’t seen the Melbourne cemetery. 

MOLLYFor godsake Frank. Keep yourself nice..

FRANKI could have stayed back at the hotel watching CNN. 

 

MOLLY(ANNOYED) Don’t be bloody ignorant.

FRANKI always thought Notre Dame was an American football team.

MOLLYI mean it Frank. You’re a Philistine.

FRANKSo you said.

MOLLY(MOVING OFF) I think it’s this way.

FRANKIt’s that way.

MOLLYHow would you know?

FRANKI checked the map this morning. It’s a circle, see? (POINTS) River Seine, Notre Dame, Eiffel Tower, Louvre. Save standing here like a gork staring at a map. (FRANK INQUIRES OF AN OFFSTAGE PASSER-BY) Excuse me mate. (NO RESPONSE-THEN ANOTHER) Excuse me mate-Parlez Vous Louvre? Louve-rey? Bloody useless. The men ignore you and the women all have dogs pissing on the footpaths. Bloody little ankle biters.

 

MOLLYYou’re a pain in the arse, really. You can’t expect them to understand you when you

insist on calling everyone mate. Learn the language. Bonjour. Merci. Parley vous Englais? Voulez-vous couchez avec moi? It’s simple enough. (WALKS  ON)

 

FRANKThat is the wrong way. Now who never listens. 

MOLLYWill you stop it. We’re on holidays for chrissake. 

 

 

FRANKAll I’m saying is it’s over that way. The North Bank. See that building?

 

MOLLYRubbish Frank. (ENGROSSED IN MAP)  You got lost in Diamaru.

 

FRANKSo did everybody else! They found dead bodies in there when they closed. 

MOLLYAre you coming or just being stupid.

FRANKIt’s over that way. By that toilet. (MOLLY  LOST IN THOUGHT  BY WAY OF HER MAP & CITY LANDMARKS) We got off the train, walked up the stairs, came out at the top of the steps near that toilet. (INDICATES)

 

MOLLYI’m not listening..

FRANKWe came out near that pissoire. 

MOLLYThose “pissoires” are all over the city you fool. 

FRANKDon’t say I didn’t tell you. Bloody common sense. You never listen. God it’s

hot. How do they stand it? 

MOLLYThey become acclimatised obviously. 

FRANKYou mean they sit here. The whole of Paris sits on the footpaths drinking

very  expensive ordinary coffee served by reactionary shopkeepers. Must all be rich. Bloody snobs. What’s wrong with “mate”?

 

MOLLYIf you don’t want to come, go back to the hotel. 

FRANKI didn’t say that.

MOLLYJust don’t spoil my day. I can find my way around without you. I can find

my way around in spite of you. Pierre offered to show me.

FRANKYes. And we both know why.

MOLLYBecause he’s a gentleman.

FRANKBullshit.

MOLLYAre you coming?

FRANKWe’re going around in circles, that’s all I’m saying darling.

MOLLYDon’t “darling” me.

FRANKWhy wont you be reasonable? We need to find a 7-eleven.

 

 

MOLLYWill you stop acting your age for one minute. 

FRANKWe’re going in circles.

MOLLYEnough! I’ve had enough. I can’t take it anymore.

FRANKWhat?

MOLLYI’m going on my own. I don’t know why I wanted you to come in the first place. I should have gone with Pierre. You go back to the hotel. If you can find it. Give me some money. Arsehole!

 

FRANKI’ll come.

MOLLYMoney! You will not come. I want to go alone. I’d rather go alone. Money! (FRANK GIVES MOLLY MONEY) Now piss off. (MOLLY STORMS OFF.)

 

FRANKShit. She’s going round the block. I’ll just wait here.  Bloody holidays. Bloody frogs. Why can’t they speak English? Why should you have to pay for a piss? Why do they want the exact money? And the Attendant’s are all females. Madam bloody pee pee’s. Peeing is an event. You have to be psychologically attuned.  (LOOKS) God, I’ve lost her. She’s got the map. Shit. Over five weeks to go. Bring on Tullamarine. Self pity and sorrow-the Gods of misfortune. Flowers! She loves flowers. Parley vous flo-werz? And chocolates! Catch a taxi back to that crummy hotel. (CALLS) Taxi! Shiiit! What was the name of the hotel?

 

 

====================================================================

 

 

 

SCENE 7.  PARIS BAR.  A PARIS BAR. EMPTY, APART FROM THE BARMAN. FRANK SINATRA SONG “ONE FOR MY BABY” IN THE BACKGROUND. MOLLY ENTERS, SITS ON A STOOL AT THE BAR.  

 

BARMANOui Madam.

MOLLYSet them up Joe.

BARMANSeven up madam?

MOLLYNo, sorry. I was daydreaming. An old Frank Sinatra song. A favourite of my husband and I. Long, long ago. Brandy and dry please Joe.

 

BARMANAhh. Let me guess. You have an argument, oui?

MOLLYOui Joe. We had an argument. A tiff .In Paris of all places. 

BARMANCity of amour Madam.

MOLLYCity of romance, Joe. That’s what Paris does to you. Reminds you of the romance...that once was.

 

BARMANNe-ver.                                                                                                                        

MOLLYOf what I’m missing, what I need.

BARMANWe all need romance, Madam.

MOLLYWe do indeed Joe. We do indeed. That’s the real magic. 

 

BARMANJoe is a very good listener, Madam.

MOLLYJoe is delightful. (TAKES HER DRINK. PAYS) Thank you Joe. Merci. It’s not so easy this holiday business. The big adventure after a lifetime together. Where did they go? Thirty-seven of them. 

 

BARMANNo!

MOLLYOui. Different personalities. Trying to compromise. Searching for that old feeling, the kisses an cuddles.

 

BARMANThe love has gone Madam?

MOLLYTemporarily misplaced Joe.

BARMANOne must not dwell on the past Madam. The future-it beck-ons.

MOLLYAnd the present?

BARMANThe present is the future Madam, and the past.

MOLLY(LAUGHS) You married Joe?

 

BARMANThree times Madam.

MOLLYNo! Get out.

BARMANGet in, madam. Variety. Good for the spirit. Oui?

MOLLY(FLIRTATIOUS) Is that so?

 

BARMANSo, it is Madam. A lovely lady like you should try it.

MOLLYYou think?

BARMANOf course, Madam. You only live once.

MOLLYSounds like a movie.

BARMANOr a song, the seven-up song! ... Joe finishes in one hour.

MOLLYAhh, Joe.  Variety. I like the sound of that. 

BARMANWe will sing the same song. Oui?

MOLLYI’m a grandmother you know.

BARMANSo is Racquel Welch Madam.

MOLLYThat’s true. 

BARMAN“A lovely lady, garmented in light

From her own beauty” 

MOLLYSorry?

BARMANShelley, madam. Lust never sleeps.

MOLLYShelley?

BARMANJoe, madam.

MOLLYI see.

BARMANJoe finishes in 57 minutes.

MOLLY(LAUGHS) Shelley. They should pay you double. I need a shovel Joe.

BARMANA shovel, Madam?

MOLLYA large shovel. To hit the bastard over the head with. 

BARMANTake careful aim madam. Better dead than injured. Oui? You must make him want you.

 

MOLLYHe wants me Joe. He needs me. He’s a man you see.

BARMAN56 minutes Madam.

MOLLYAnd then?

 

PIERREMadam’s pleasure?

MOLLY(SMILES) Play that song again Joe.

 

 

 

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

 

SCENE 8. PARIS. MOLLY & FRANK’S HOTEL ROOM,  AVENUE D’ITALIE,13TH ARRONDISMENT. FRANK HAS BOUGHT FLOWERS/CHOCOLATES. MOLLY ENTERS.

 

FRANKDarling, where have you been? I was worried.

MOLLY(A SHADE TIDDLY) Out.

FRANKHow was the cemetery?

MOLLYBeautiful. 

FRANKI bought you these.

MOLLYPut them in a vase.

FRANKThey haven’t got one.

MOLLYYou didn’t bring a vase? 

FRANK(FRANK FINDS A GLASS/HANDS HER CHOCOLATES) I’m sorry darling,.

MOLLYYou found the hotel then?

FRANKCaught a taxi. Asked him to cruise along Avenue D’Italie until I recognised the place.

 

MOLLYHow much did it cost?

FRANKNot much. (MOLLY LAUGHS) I can’t help being prudent darling. 

MOLLYYou can, you know.

FRANKWe might live till we’re eighty. 

 

 

MOLLYYou’ll be ninety.

FRANKOn the pension?

MOLLYNow, is important Frank.   

FRANKAre you allright darling?

MOLLYI’ve had a wonderful afternoon. I walked with the Sparrow and the Diva...and Oscar.  

 

FRANK“We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars”

MOLLY(EXAMINES HERSELF) Do you think I look like Racquel Welch?

FRANKWho?

MOLLYThe top of The Eiffel Tower. Paris, laid out all around me, at my feet.

FRANKI went half way.

MOLLYDon’t be ridiculous.

FRANKI don’t lack the will darling, just the strength. 

MOLLYYou don’t understand Frank. You have to do it. Go to the top. You love travelogues. Didn’t they have any meaning? I’ve read books since I was a girl. I’ve always wanted to see things, fulfilling a dream. The older I got, the stronger the obsession became. Can you understand that?

 

FRANKOf course-

MOLLYIf you want to be a Knight you’ve got to act like one. 

FRANKIt’s one thing to look darling; it’s another altogether to actually see.

MOLLYI beg your pardon?

FRANKMerely a flash of insight.

MOLLYMore like a blood clot. Aren’t you overwhelmed by the sheer physical beauty of Paris? You only ever go half way Frank. 

 

FRANKI get a bit frightened-of heights.

MOLLYWhat will you do when we get to the Acropolis?                                                                                                               

FRANKI’ll definitely have a look. I promise.

 

 

MOLLYI’ll want to take my foot out of my shoe and feel the soil, feel the rocks, the marble. I’ll want to feel the ground under me. I want to feel the energy. The mighty Acropolis under me. History. 5000 years. Fulfilling a lifetime dream. 

 

FRANKYes darling.

MOLLYYou’re not hearing, Mr insightful flash!

FRANKI am darling. I’m hearing. Unlike our children.

MOLLYTwo more wonderful days in Paris, and then on to Rome. 

FRANKThe ruins of Roma. Two coins in the fountain.

MOLLYThree. (PAUSE) What’s the most important thing in life Frank?

FRANKThe more you get the more you want? 

MOLLYFrank!

FRANKJoking love. Ancient ruins?

MOLLYNo.

FRANKJustice?

MOLLYNo.

FRANKRespect.

MOLLYLove!

FRANKWell, yes...of course, and...MOLLYNot money.

FRANKShit no-

MOLLYAnd not your job.

FRANKGood health?

MOLLYLove!

FRANKYeah...and family.

MOLLYSame thing.

FRANKSame thing...love?

 

 

MOLLYYou’ve got it...I love the flowers.

FRANKAm I really an arsehole?

MOLLYYes darling!  

 

 

 

====================================================================

 

 

 

SCENE 9. ROME. SIDEWALK RESTAURANT. FRANK AND MOLLY ARE HAVING COFFEE AFTER AN EVENING  MEAL. AN EMPTY BOTTLE OF RED WINE. A SONG IN THE BACKGROUND “ARRIVEDERCI ROMA.” THEY SIT IN PEACE. THE WAITER BRINGS A BOTTLE OF WATER AND TWO GLASSES. 

 

WAITER(TO MOLLY) Scusa bella Principessa.

MOLLYGrazie.

FRANKYeah, well done mate. Grazie. 

WAITERParla Italiano. (FRANK NODS. WAITER ASSUMES FRANK SPEAKS ITALIAN AND LAUNCHES INTO ITALIAN DIATRIBE)

 

FRANK(FRANK LAUGHS IN AGREEMENT) Yes. Oui.Grazie. (THE WAITER REALISES HIS MISTAKE-EXITS. MOLLY WATCHES HIM DEPART) 

Feels weird. Grazie artsy. Feel like Paul Hogan.

 

MOLLYIt’s nice. 

FRANKZealous little bugger. Did we ask for the water?

MOLLYJust accept it darling.

FRANKDo they charge?

MOLLYDoes it matter?

FRANKJust wondered.

MOLLYHow’s your foot?

FRANKThe band aid rubs against the back of my shoe.

 

MOLLYYou didn’t have to walk in bare feet. 

FRANKA man of action darling.

MOLLYYou?

FRANKA lost hankering for action.

MOLLYA lost cause?

FRANKI just have to be more receptive. Feel the spirits. Locate my third eye. That Colosseum must have it’s share of ghosts.

 

MOLLYHistory darling.

FRANKFeels a bit weird doesn’t it, sitting on the footpath.

MOLLYThey do it in Melbourne. 

FRANKRather be inside eating roast lamb.

MOLLYElizabeth’s cooking lamb tonight.

FRANKThat’ll frighten the daylights out of the oven. 

MOLLYThis is romantic.

FRANKIt is darling. We’d better buy some savlon for my foot.

MOLLYYou didn’t bring  any?

FRANKCan’t find it. 

MOLLYThis is so nice. Roma. 

FRANKMeek-onos. Mik-onos.

MOLLYWell done.

FRANKI’m quite looking forward to sprawling on a Greko Island. Ti Kaneis.

MOLLYI told you.

FRANKWhat did you tell me darling?

MOLLYTravel. It’s spiritual. You haven’t had a panic attack for days. No hernia problems. No prostate problems. Aren’t you glad you came?

 

 

 

FRANKApart from my foot.

MOLLYThis holiday will make you ten years younger.

FRANKI’ll bet you a dollar they charge for the water.

MOLLYFrank!

FRANKJust teasing darling.

 

 

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

 

SCENE 10.  ROME AIRPORT.  

DUTY FREE AREA. PETER & MOLLY, WITH CAMERA.

PETERScusa.  Mi puo aiutare.

MOLLYSorry. I don’t understand.

PETERYou’re Australian.

MOLLYIs it so obvious?

PETERLong way. (MOLLY SMILES) Actually, I wonder if you would be kind enough to assist me. I’m wanting a decent brand of perfume and I’m afraid I’m not very good at it.

 

MOLLYThat depends who it’s for.

PETERMy mother.

MOLLYI see.

PETERReally. I always bring home a present for mother. One of life’s little duties. 

MOLLYLucky mother.

PETERI’ll take that as a compliment. 

MOLLYAn elderly lady or a modern lady?

PETERDefinitely conservative.

 

MOLLYI love Georgio, but, I’d say your mother would prefer L’ Air Du Temps. 

PETERThank you. Are you travelling on an organised tour?

MOLLYWith my husband. We’re going to Athens and Mykonos.

PETERYour first visit?

MOLLYOur first overseas trip.

PETERHow romantic. (MOLLY LAUGHS) Mykonos is the most beautiful island. There’s a wonderful little restaurant not far from the harbour. Little Venice. You must try it.

 

MOLLYI might just do that.

PETERI’m Peter. Perhaps we could meet there for lunch one day?

MOLLYMother wouldn’t object?

PETER(LAUGHS) Mother would be thrilled.

MOLLY SMILES.  LIGHTS UP ON FRANK. WAITING AREA. NO BAGGAGE. FRANK IS SINGING. 

 

FRANKArri-eee vederci Roma.....goodbye.....dah dah, dah dum-

PETER(ENTERS. SITS. LOOKS)... Enjoy Rome did we?

FRANKMmm?  Oh g’day mate.  Yes. Off to Athens now, If the plane ever decides to arrive. 40 minutes late. Why don’t they speak English over these loudspeakers.

 

PETERThey don’t speak Italian at the English speaking airports.

FRANKIs that right?

PETERThe plane has arrived. See? It’s all a matter of clearance. Rome is a busy airport. 

FRANKIt’s not a very big plane.

PETERIt’s a 777.

FRANKSeasoned traveller are you?

PETERNot as such, no. I take myself off once every year. Three or four weeks.

Unwind. Escape the madness of London.

FRANK(LAUGHS) Good old London, yes. What do you do?

 

 

PETERY’do?

FRANKFor a living man. Occupation! 

PETEROh. Psychologist. Been at it 12 years. Been travelling 12 years. Seen it all

really. Rome is my favourite. It’s unique. The Eternal City, with a history stretching back 2700 years.

 

FRANKEternal traffic.

PETERSorry?

FRANKNot married then?

PETER(SMILES) Why do you ask?

FRANKYou’d do well in the marriage business. Psychology and all that.

PETERGenerally it’s the wives I see.

FRANKMen don’t need psychologists.

PETERMen don’t want psychologists. 

FRANKRoses do the trick. Roses, chocolates,  money... and subservience. Husbands are too far gone.  A mass of confusion.

 

PETERWhat business are you in?

FRANKFinance. Senior Financial Advisor for the Government. Can’t say much more. Very top secret.  My wife and I are constant travellers.  Off to Athens for a break. The mighty Acropolis. Plato. Socrates. You?

 

PETERMykonos actually.

FRANKI see.

PETERDo you? 

FRANKSeen Australia? 

PETERI hope to get there one day. 

FRANKI’ll be back there in 20 days.....8 hours, 17 minutes.

PETERWhat part of Australia?

 

 

 

FRANKMelbourne mate. World’s most liveable city. Garden State. The Yarra River. Fairy Penguins. Hump back whales. TAB’s. Football. Cricket. Cold beer. What’s so special about Rome?

 

PETERHistory, the ancient city. The educational centre, cultural, historic ruins,

fashions, architecture-

FRANKI’m not big on monuments. 

PETERIt all started here.

FRANKCrowded though, don’t you think? Scooter bikes, tourists.

6 million churches. Rampant materialism. Everybody striving to strut.

PETERThat’s the adrelelin. All part of the atmosphere.

FRANKI love Paris. Take that Gustave Effel. Now there was an engineer extraordinaire. 1792 steps. 312 metres. That is one tall flagpole.

 

PETERA breathtaking view-

FRANKParis at your feet. And charming little puppies with bursting bladders. And beautiful women. My wife loves a good sunset. Me? I love the female bottom.

 

PETERI saw one not 10 minutes ago.

FRANK I haven’t seen anyone come near those French women. I did like the Colosseum. I took my shoes off and felt the vibrations of history underneath me. Walked with the Christians. Until a spiritual lion bit my foot.

                                                                                        

PETERNo.

FRANKYou wouldn’t have a spare cigarette on you?

PETERNo... well... nature calls.

FRANKWe all have to “pee” don’t we. 

PETERDon’t want to queue up when we get on board. It’s almost an operation on a 777-as you would know. (PETER BEGINS TO EXIT)

 

FRANK(HOLDING HIM UP) Mind you, Ayers Rock is higher than the Eiffel Tower. 1100 feet. Well before those Romans.

 

PETER(PETER EXITING-STOPS) Isn’t it called Uluru? (EXITS)

FRANK(OUT OF EARSHOT)  Pommies.                                                                    

 

MOLLY ENTERS. FRANK MUCH MORE RECEPTIVE NOW.        

FRANKHi darling. Did anything take your fancy?

MOLLYEverything is so expensive.

FRANKForget the money pet.

MOLLY          Sorry I took so long. 

FRANKI was charming a fellow traveller with my worldly knowledge. We’re going to have to do something about all our luggage. I’ll be down to seven stone time we get home.

 

MOLLYIsn’t it worth it - Trevi Fountain, Spanish Steps, the Sistene Chapel.

FRANKDon’t you ever get tired?

MOLLYAn unbelievable, magic experience.

FRANKMagic, magic, magic. Captured for eternity on your magic little camera.

MOLLYWe saw The Pope Frank.  

FRANK. Purported to be The Pope. Could have been the Dalai Lama. The Colosseum was good. Crown Casino in 20 years.

 

MOLLYDinner last night with that sexy waiter.

FRANKHe was after you love.

MOLLYHe had a lovely bottom.

FRANKJesus brought love into the world darling. 

MOLLYDid he now.

FRANKThereby outlawing sex  orgies.

PETER(ENTERS) Hello again, Molly.

MOLLYPeter. Did you buy the perfume?

PETERL’ Air Du Temps. 

MOLLYYou’ll be popular.

PETERSo this is... 

 

MOLLYFrank, this is Peter. We met in the Duty Free.  

FRANKWe’ve met. 

PETERFrank. Must be off. Hope we meet again Molly. 

MOLLYThat would be lovely Peter. Little Venice.

PETERYou can’t miss it.

MOLLYI’ll look out for you. (EXITS)

FRANKDoesn’t fancy women.

MOLLYI think he does. Not a very big plane Frank.

FRANKThat’s a 777. They’ll take ages to board. What’s Little Venice?

MOLLYPeter’s favourite spot on Mykonos.

FRANKDon’t you find it hard? Coming to terms with the idea of having a holiday and being constantly exhausted. (STARTS TO EXIT) I’d better have a pee.It’s an operation on a 777.

 

 

====================================================================

 

 

SCENE 11. ATHENS, GREECE. THE PLAKA DISTRICT.   A MULTITUDE OF SMALL SHOPS ALONG A NARROW STREET. HUSTLE AND BUSTLE AMID TOURISTS AND SHOPKEEPERS. MOLLY CARRIES HER CAMERA. THEY STOP OUTSIDE A CLOTHING SHOP. MOLLY TAKES A PHOTO OF FRANK & THE SHOPKEEPER..

 

SHOPK.Kalimera.

FRANKKalimera. 

SHOPK.You come inside sir. I have just the shirt for you. Beautiful silk. I sell for a very special price.

 

FRANKIs that right? Silk, eh?

SHOPK.Is right. Come, come. You come too lovely lady. Lovely silk. Extra special price for lovely lady. (THEY GO IN.)

 

MOLLYIt’s all mens gear, isn’t it?

SHOPK.No, no. Mens. Womens. Unisex. It’s no problem. We have everything. You from England, yes.

 

FRANKAustralia mate. Fair go. Frank’s the name.

SHOPK.Ahh. Australia. Beautiful. I am Dhanos.

FRANKNearly lost us there.

SHOPK.Many Greeks live in Australia, yes?

FRANKThat’s right mate. Great country. We love the Greek people. Greek food

too, don’t we love? Greek salads, Greek coffee, Greek hats, Greek ash trays.

 

SHOPK.I have little cousin who lives in Australia. Yhanos. You know Yhanos?

(THE SHOPKEEPER MEASURES YHANOS’S HEIGHT WITH HIS HAND)

FRANKHe lives next door to me.

SHOPK.Ha ha. You make the joke, no? You like Athens?

MOLLYWe love Athens.

SHOPK.World’s most liveable city. I give you extra special price. See madam this 

shirt? Beautiful texture. Feel this. Is good yes? You try on. Here sir, Mr Australian mate. This is beautiful. I do special deal on this one. Which part 

of Australia you from?Sydney, Melvourne? (PRONOUNCED MEL-VOURNE-EH)

 

FRANKMelbourne mate. Worlds most liv-

MOLLYFrank!

SHOPK.I hear good things about Melvourne. I have second cousin went to Melvourne, 10, 15 years ago. Thanos. He still there. Must be good eh? Very good shirt madam. Definitely for you.

 

MOLLYIt’s not really me.

SHOPK.You try this one. This one is for you.

MOLLYNo, I don’t think so. Thanks anyway.

FRANK(EXAMINING THE SHIRT) What do you think Moll?

MOLLYYes. Looks nice if you like it. It’s silk Frank.

 

FRANKFeels good love.  

MOLLYWhere would you wear it?

FRANKDinner, the footy, anywhere. How much?

SHOPK.Normal price 80 Euros. For Australian mate, just 40. 

FRANK$70 bucks! Not that cheap is it?

SHOPK.Cheap? What is cheap? You want cheap? It falls to pieces in no time. A man like you deserves the best. Not Asian silk, they no feed the silkworms, they generic engineer! This good silk. We feed souvlaki. Last forever. You twist my arm. 35 Euros for my Australian friend. Very best  low price.

 

FRANKI’ll pay 30. That’s my bottom line.

SHOPK.Ha, ha. You drive the hard bargain. I tell you. You buy two, I sell for

55 Euros. I can’t do any better than that.

FRANKYeah? 45 bucks each. What do you think darling?

MOLLYDo you like them?

FRANKYeah, I do. Feel the silk. 

MOLLYI already have.

FRANKNever worn silk. Too pricey. You think I need them?

MOLLYIf you like them love. Shirts don’t go to waste.

FRANKThat’s right. Can’t waste good silk. This silk lasts forever.

MOLLYDepends.

FRANKBugger it. Live it up. We’re on holiday. Look good in Bangkok. Hang the 

bloody expense eh? What do you think?

 

MOLLYWhy not!

SHOPK.50. Final offer. I sell at a loss.

FRANKNow that is good. $85 bucks for two. You’ve got me mate. 50. 

Too good to refuse. I’ll take two. You take Visa?

SHOPK.Visa is good. How long you stay here?

 

 

FRANKTomorrow we go to Mike-onos- 

SHOPK ) Mykonos!

MOLLY    )

FRANK12 days. Catch the big ferry. Back here overnight, then off home via stopover Bangkok.

 

SHOPK.You will love Mykonos. Lovely scarf for lovely madam. 10 Euros. Very cheap.

 

MOLLYNo thank you. It is lovely though.

SHOPK.No problem. Have lovely holiday. You come back I have many more beautiful clothes. Very special Australian price.

 

FRANK(OUTSIDE THE SHOP) What do you think?

MOLLYThey’re nice.

FRANKYou sure?

MOLLYI don’t know that you need two shirts love. You’re not exactly a social butterfly. Especially silk.

 

FRANKYou’re taking the piss!

MOLLYThey’re gorgeous.

FRANKI got them both for nearly the same price he offered for one. Until I beat

him down. What’s wrong with silk?

MOLLYJust doesn’t seem you, that’s all.

FRANKWhy didn’t you say something?

MOLLYThey’re fine darling. I like them.

FRANKLike?

MOLLYLove. I adore them.

FRANKWhat’s me anyway. I’m a Philistine.

MOLLYWhere’s your sense of humour?

FRANK          Just never worn silk. Bloody cheap for silk.

MOLLYProbably.

 

FRANKYou’re doing it again. They’re bloody silk love.

MOLLYI know they’re bloody silk darling. There’s all kinds of silk. All at

different prices. I bought a dress years ago. Had ART silk on the label.       I thought it was very posh until someone pointed out art stood for artificial.

 

FRANKThese haven’t got a label.

MOLLYExactly.

FRANKI thought I got a bargain?

MOLLYI’m sure you did. It’s just that you always say a bargain’s not a bargain

unless you need it. 

FRANKI’ll take them back.

MOLLYThey’re fine. Very sexy. The blue will look great. I don’t know where you expect to wear the pink though.

 

FRANKIt’s red...isn’t it?

MOLLYWell, rose’.

FRANKShit. Let’s try one of those souvlaki things, I’m starving.

MOLLYLet’s go back to that shoe shop first darling. I need new shoes-the red ones.

FRANKThey were 75 Euros love.

MOLLYThey’re double that back home darling.

FRANKYou’ve got a dozen pairs already. You may well desire new shoes but you definitely don’t need them.

 

MOLLYIf it’s allright for you to buy two puncy looking silk shirts-

FRANKPuncy?

MOLLYWear one when we get back to our hotel. Sexy rose’.

FRANK75 Euros. That’s over $130.  Maybe more the way the dollar’s falling. Bloody crooks.  I’ll take them back.

 

MOLLYYou will do nothing of the sort. He wouldn’t take them anyway. He saw you coming,  the old fox.

 

 

 

FRANKI thought I was the old fox?

MOLLYForget it. We’re on holiday. 

FRANKLet’s go get a souvlaki and a beer. 

MOLLYThen to the shoe shop, and back to our 3 star for a matinee.

FRANKHow much would these shirts cost back home?

MOLLYAt South Melbourne market, about $20.

FRANKTell me you jest?

MOLLYWear the pink shirt.

FRANKRose’.

MOLLYI’ll wear my sexy red high heels?

FRANKWhat?

MOLLYYou heard.

FRANKI might have a headache.

MOLLYCome on, you old fox. 

FRANKNo wonder husbands die before their wives. Have you noticed how 

everyone smokes here?

MOLLYNo.

FRANKOne cigarette?

MOLLYMaybe after. 

FRANKBob might like a silk shirt as his present, do you think?

MOLLYBob’s a motor mechanic love.

FRANKIt’s the thought that counts.

 

 

 

===================================================================

 

 

SCENE 12.  MYKONOS. MYKONOS ISLAND. THE CYCLADES. GREECE. EARLY MORNING. FRANK AND MOLLY SIT ON THEIR BALCONY OVERLOOKING THE WATER. FRANK IS READING THE SUNDAY TIMES NEWSPAPER, DRESSED IN SHORTS, SUNCAP, GREEK SINGLET. MOLLY HAS ON A LIGHT SARONG. SHE IS STANDING-TAKING A PHOTO. GEORGIO PERFUME ON THE TABLE.

 

FRANKThis is the go love. Balcony overlooking the Aegean, and only half the price 

of a 3 star. Heaven on a stick. (PAUSE) What will we do today?

MOLLY (SITS) I don’t mind darling. 

FRANKWhat do you want to do?

MOLLYI’m happy to do whatever you want to do.

FRANKYou don’t want to do anything in particular? 

MOLLYWhatever. We’re on holiday.

FRANKYou feel all right?

MOLLYI feel good.

FRANK  Happy?

MOLLYI’m happy if you’re happy.

FRANKWell, I’m happy... if you’re happy... Want to ring the kids?

MOLLYDo you?

FRANKNah. We’re living for the present.

MOLLYThe now.

FRANKThree days, now.

MOLLYIs it?

FRANKThey’ll be on to missing persons.

MOLLYMaybe tomorrow.

FRANKYou were in town a while yesterday. 

MOLLYI checked out Little Venice.

 

FRANKDid you bump into Peter?

MOLLYGot some perfume. 

FRANKNice? 

MOLLYLovely. 

FRANK(PAUSE) What’s so funny about this joke? 

MOLLYWhat joke?

FRANK(NEWSPAPER) The chicken and the egg, lying in bed. The chicken is smoking a cigarette with a satisfied smile on its face. The egg is frowning, 

and looking a bit pissed off. The egg mutters, to no one in particular, “Well, I guess we answered that question” (MOLLY LAUGHS) What?

 

MOLLYIt’s that age old question.

FRANKWhy did the chicken cross the road?

MOLLYWhat came first, the chicken or the egg.

FRANK...So?

MOLLYWhat came first. The chicken is smoking a cigarette. They’ve just had sex.

What came first.

FRANK(PAUSE) We could go to the beach.

MOLLYDo you want to go to the beach?

FRANKWe could I suppose. If you want. I mean we’re here aren’t we? Perhaps after breakfast. Journey down. What would it be, 200 metres? What about after lunch? Do we stay here or go to another beach?

 

MOLLYHave you got something in mind?

FRANKI thought you might fancy a day trip or something.

MOLLYThat sounds nice. Where to?

FRANKUp to you Princess. Paros. Naxos. Santorini looks nice. Catch the fast ferry. Stay overnight. Bring your red shoes.

 

MOLLYI’ve read all about Santorini. There’s a steep bus ride up to the village from the port darling. You might not like that. Remember the Eiffel Tower. 900 steps.

 

 

FRANKIt’s that high?

MOLLYAccording to Lonely Planet.

FRANKGet claustrophobia, and vertigo. I was really worried in Paris.

MOLLYYou stayed down the bottom.

FRANKIt was that movie. Dirk Bogarde.

MOLLYWhat movie?

FRANK“So Long at the Fair”. They were in Paris. His wife disappeared. I got scared, what with our big  argument.

 

MOLLYYour fault.

FRANKI’m not fussed though. 

MOLLYI’ll do whatever you want to do.

FRANKI love you.

MOLLYI know darling.

FRANKDo you love me?

MOLLYYes darling.

FRANKWe could go around to Elias Beach again. Take some more pictures.

MOLLYWe could.  

FRANKDo you know they had indoor plumbing on Crete 2500 years ago.

MOLLYDid they?

FRANKProbably did better than they’ve got in Athens right now.

MOLLYWouldn’t be hard darling.

FRANKThose three young ladies on the beach yesterday-

MOLLYThey were gorgeous.

FRANKLayed out their towels. Took off their clothes. And sunbaked. Naked.

Right in front of me, us.

MOLLYAnd the men.

 

FRANKA magnificent procession. (PAUSE) You think they see us?

MOLLYNo darling.

FRANKThat’s some sort of bonus isn’t it?

MOLLYIf you say so.

FRANKDo you ever wish to be young again?

MOLLYNo.

FRANKPuts off dying.

MOLLYWe’ve always been young.

FRANKBeen a fantastic holiday.

MOLLYNot finished yet. 

FRANKNo. Bangkok. So, what do you think, Elias?

MOLLYIt takes up the whole day. And there’s not a lot there apart from the beach. 

Would you be all right with it this time? Don’t forget most of them are in the nuddy.

 

FRANKHave to be in the mood for all those blokes in the nuddy. Makes a man feel 

inferior. Big dongers staring down at you. 

 

MOLLYI don’t think he meant anything by it.

FRANKFancy coming over to you and asking the time with his donger on show.

MOLLYBigger than yours.

FRANKYou think?

MOLLYAu naturale.

FRANKNearly gave you a black eye. 

MOLLYYou could hold your own love.

FRANKYeah? Ahh. No thank you very much. Showoffs. I suppose one beach is

the same as another, isn’t it? We could stay here all day. Please ourselves.

MOLLYIf that’s what you want.

 

 

FRANKCheck out these teeth. See? You know that stain there-20 years. No 

dentist could shift it. Completely gone. See? Must be the salt water. Magic.

 

MOLLYCheck out these boobs. 

FRANKThey’re beautiful. 

MOLLY I’m sure they’re bigger. Must be the salt water.

FRANKIt’s magic. What about it then? Santorini? 

MOLLYYou might have one of your panic attacks love.

FRANKI’ll be fine.

MOLLYWe’d have to catch the 9 o'clock ferry.

FRANKHardly over breakfast.

MOLLYOr catch the later one and come back late tomorrow night.

FRANKNot keen on the ferries late at night. Strange country. Foreign. Probably too

many tourists on Santorini. Bloody backpackers. Like ants.

MOLLYBackpackers are nice...so what shall we do?

FRANKWhatever makes you happy love.

MOLLYWe could stay here all day.

FRANKIf that’s what you want.... what’s for breakfast?

MOLLYWhat would you like?

FRANKYou sit there, take it easy. I’ll get it. 

MOLLYDid they find his wife?

FRANKDirk Bogarde’s? (MOLLY NODS) They always do. What’ll it be?

MOLLYOysters.

FRANKOf course. Oysters. And you darling. (MOLLY LAUGHS) Only if you’re up to it.

MOLLYWhy not.

 

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

SCENE 13. BANGKOK. THAILAND. A HOTEL ROOM AT THE FIVE STAR AMARI AIRPORT HOTEL. FRANK AND MOLLY ENTER INTO LUXURY, MINUS THEIR LUGGAGE. FRANK WEARS HIS ROSE’ SILK SHIRT. THEY ENTER.

 

FRANKI’m not happy about leaving all that luggage with them Moll. They could plant something and we end up in jail for life.  

 

MOLLYOh be quiet. King size singles. We’ll have to christen them.

 

FRANKMy back’s gone love. 

MOLLYLater.

FRANKIt’s the luggage love. Wears me out.  Where’s the dencorub?

(KNOCK AT THE DOOR. THE PORTER ENTERS WITH THREE SUITCASES) G’day. (AS HE EXITS) Lovely day. (NO RESPONSE)

 

MOLLYGot the tip ready?

FRANKWhy a tip?

MOLLYIt’s 5 star. I want to luxuriate.

FRANKHow much?

MOLLYAt least five dollars?

FRANKWhat for?

MOLLYThen they look after us.

FRANKThen they never leave us alone.

MOLLYYou’re doing it again!

FRANK(PORTER RE-ENTERS-MORE LUGGAGE-AS HE EXITS) Nice hat. (NO RESPONSE)

 

FRANKI’ll give him twenty baht.

MOLLYHow much is that?

FRANK(CALCULATES) A dollar.

MOLLYGive him 100 baht.

 

 

FRANKHe’ll think I’m Kerry Packer.                                                                                                                          (MOLLY EXPLORES THE LUXURY. PORTER RE-ENTERS WITH MORE 

LUGGAGE. FRANK PLAYS THE RICH TOURIST.)  You look familiar. You 

don’t happen to have a cousin in Athens who sells silk shirts? Fancy buying a nice rose’ one? (PORTER NO UNDERSTAND. PORTER BOWS, WAITS FOR TIP-FRANK SUPPLIES)

 

PORTER(AS HE DEPARTS, BOWS) Lovely pink shirt.

FRANK(CALLING) Rose’   

MOLLY(FRANK’S NEW CARRY BAG.) What’s this?

FRANKBought it at the Airport.  Something to carry all our goodies in.

MOLLYGoodies?

FRANKSouvenirs. Soaps, ash trays, shampoos, shower caps, sewing kits.

We’ll fill up the bag here. Little presents. Don’t touch any of the stuff in the fridge. They charge. Anything you don’t use in the bathroom we’ll take home. What about the towels?

 

MOLLYThat’s stealing. 

FRANKThey expect it. Like tipping. I’m going to check these bags for drugs. Don’t fancy rice and water for 20 years.

 

MOLLYWhere do you get these ideas?

FRANK“Bangkok Hilton, Midnight Express”  Didn’t you see the guards at the airport with machine guns? More of them than bloody tourists.

 

MOLLYIt was the same at Rome airport. And Paris. Athens.

FRANKNot Athens love. If smoking’s a health hazard the whole of the Greek Army

will drop dead of lung cancer. They were all outside leaning on a tank smoking. 

 

MOLLYI took your picture in front of that tank. (STOPS) Frank, where’s my camera? Have you seen it?

 

FRANKI’m barred from touching the bloody thing.                                                                MOLLYI think we’ve lost it.

FRANKI haven’t lost it.  

 

 

MOLLYI always carry it. I had it at Athens Airport. I must have put it down when I was arguing for your silly aisle seat.

 

FRANKAre you sure?

MOLLYIt’s your fault. 

FRANKI could ring the airport. Wouldn’t hold my breath though. We’ve got a thousand pictures.

 

MOLLYIt’s got all our Mykonos photos in it.

FRANKWe can claim it on insurance.

MOLLYThanks to you it’s gone now.                

FRANKWhy is it my fault?

MOLLYI’m going to telephone the kids.

FRANKWe’re nearly home.

MOLLY(SNAPS) We haven’t called in 4 days.  

FRANK Bob hasn’t called us once. 

MOLLYI’ve been looking forward to 5 star for weeks. Don’t you dare spoil it.

FRANKDidn’t you enjoy the past 6 weeks?

MOLLYThat’s not the point. This is our last treat. It’s bad enough you’ve lost the camera. Don’t be so fucking tight. 

 

FRANKKeep yourself nice love.

MOLLYFuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck!

FRANKYou finished?

MOLLYFuck!

FRANKYou know I hate that. I am not tight, I’m prudent. I just don’t feel like being stung that’s all. 

 

MOLLYI don’t care about the cost. Just let’s enjoy the luxury and forget about

money. Put that white towelling dressing gown on and have a swim.

 

FRANKDo you think we could souvenir the dressing gown?

 

MOLLYNo!

FRANK(STILL EXAMINING THE CASES) They probably charge to wear them. 

MOLLYI’m warning you!

FRANKCan’t I comment?

MOLLYLeave the cases alone. Go and have a swim.

FRANKIt doesn’t hurt to be careful.

MOLLYI put up with you whinging in the plane because I knew we’d have three days of luxury here. Fucking aisle seat? It cost me my camera.

 

FRANKWhy are you so testy?

MOLLYI am not testy.

FRANKYou’re testy.

MOLLYI simply want to enjoy it.

FRANKYou’re talking bullshit.

MOLLYThat’s it! I’ve had enough. I’m going home. (SHE BEGINS TO STORM OUT) 

 

FRANKWhat?

MOLLYYou heard. I’m going home. Book me a ticket to fly out this afternoon. I’ve had enough Frank. You’re an arsehole. You were an arsehole the day you 

were born, and you’re still an arsehole. I can’t take it any longer. 

FRANKTake what?

MOLLYYou, you prick. You’re always right aren’t you? You never apologise and

you’re always right. I’m sick of it, and I’m sick of you, you arsehole. I don’t

know why you came on this holiday, I really don’t. You’re not enjoying it.

You refuse to enjoy it. You insist on being an arsehole. In Paris you wouldn’t even pay to have a pee.

 

FRANKI didn’t feel like a pee. 

MOLLYBook me a ticket.

FRANKI came to please you.

 

 

MOLLYOh no. No, no, no, no, no! Don’t you dare try that you arsehole. You 

suggested this holiday, “once in a lifetime” not me, you prick.

FRANKThis has been for you love. (A BANGING ON THE WALL) Overseas. Our second honeymoon.

 

MOLLYWe didn’t have a first honeymoon! (RESPONDING TO THE NEXT ROOM

TENANT) Fuck off!

 

FRANKSteady love. People will hear you.

MOLLYI don’t give a stuff. If you wanted to please me you would have booked us 4 star all the way, instead of some of those crummy hotels. I hate crummy 

hotels. I nearly fainted because of those crummy hotels. Now at last I get a 5 star and you start again. Book me a fucking ticket home.  (MOLLY STORMS OUT)

 

FRANKShit. Have to pay for another flight. Ooh, my back. 

(MOLLY STORMS BACK IN.)

 

MOLLYI’m going to take a 5 star bath. ( GATHERING UP HER BATH REQUISITES.)

FRANKI’m sorry love.

MOLLYYou’re just saying that to save the airfare.

FRANKIt’s just me. Cooped up in that plane. Deep vain thrombosis. 

MOLLYDeep pockets. 

FRANKNo more. I promise. No point arguing at this late stage.

MOLLYYou’re an arsehole.

FRANKI wasn’t an arsehole on Mykonos.

MOLLYYou’ve always been an arsehole.

FRANKAnd a prick. I know darling. 

MOLLYI just want to enjoy a bit of luxury. Is that too much to ask?

FRANKIt’s me darling, I’m a Philistine. Come on, sit down. (SHE SITS) Let’s have a bath together. Then we’ll go out and have a nice Thai meal.

 

MOLLYYou don’t eat Thai food.

FRANKI adore Thai food. Coriander and coconut. Yummy.

 

 

MOLLY(FRANK KISSES HER) What about your back, arsehole.

FRANKI’m really fit darling. I’m sorry. I adore you.(TELEPHONE RINGS)

MOLLYShit. You answer it.

FRANK(ANSWERS) Hello? Lizzy! How are you? Where are you ringing from? Our place. Excellent. (MOLLY WANTS THE PHONE) Here darling. I’ll put Mum on. Talk as long as you like.   (HANDS PHONE TO MOLLY)

 

MOLLYHi darling, we’re in Bangkok. Oh it’s wonderful. King size beds, fabulous swimming pool.You’re father wanted to check the luggage for drugs. Silly moo. He lost my camera. No, we’re not fighting. Took 9 hours from Athens. Father wore his silk shirt. Yes. The pink... rose’ one. He’ll have to stay away from Commercial Road, he’ll be picked up. We’re going into 

town to buy some pressies.  I bought 4 pairs of shoes in Athens. How’s Sarah? No. Sarah’s walking Frank.  We’ll have to take a picture of her. Oh, no! I haven’t got a camera! Your father lost it....Allright darling. See you in three days. Kiss Sarah for me. Bye. (HANGS UP) 

 

FRANKI thought you only bought 2 pair of shoes?

MOLLYOne each for Sarah and Thomas.

FRANKThat’s wonderful.

MOLLYI’m sorry darling.

FRANKIt was my fault.

MOLLYI know. Let’s try room service Frank. Look? Asparagus tips and cheese platter?

FRANKWhat about that bath?

MOLLYFirst room service, run the bath, eat in the bath, have a sleep (SEX), then the pool, then dinner. We’ll shop tomorrow. I’ll buy you another silk shirt. I feel like Susan Peacock/Renouf.

 

FRANKYou’re much sexier.

MOLLYI’m a grandmother.

FRANKThat Pierre of Paris thought so.

MOLLYHe was gorgeous. Sexy tight bum.

FRANKWhat’s with these tight bums?

 

MOLLYA woman always pines for what she’s never had. 

FRANKIf I hadn’t got married, and hired an expensive call girl once a week...

 

MOLLYShut up. I’ll buy you a nice linen shirt.

FRANKI’ll lock the door. Oops, I forgot. No need.

 

 

BLACKOUT-AEROPLANE-STEWARD SPRAYING DISINFECTANT. BACKDROP MAP-

BANGKOK TO MELBOURNE. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

 

 

 

SCENE 14.  THE LOUNGE ROOM. SUBURBAN AUSTRALIA. FRANK AND MOLLY HAVE JUST ARRIVED HOME. LUGGAGE ALL AROUND. FRANK IS ON THE TELEPHONE.  

 

FRANKOh magic darling,  one long dream. We felt the history with our feet. Architecture, people, ghosts. I didn’t see any ghosts but your mother did. She’s got a third eye apparently. Talk to you later.  Bye. (HANGSUP)  Did you want to talk?

 

MOLLY(PREOCCUPIED)  I’ll see her later. 

FRANKA phone call for 15 cents...what’s the matter?

MOLLYI was just thinking about my camera. 

FRANKWe’ll go again. Take more pictures.

MOLLYSuch a shame.

FRANK PULLS OUT A NEW CAMERA FROM HIS GOODIES BAG.

FRANKHere. 

MOLLY(NEW CAMERA) You sly old devil. 

FRANKWhile you were buying your Brandy.

MOLLYYou’re a darling. (MOLLY KISSES FRANK) What about the old one? 

FRANKWe’re insured. No more expense concerns, no more stress, we’ll go again.

Use up our frequent flyer points.

 

MOLLYI see.

FRANKI bought six roles of film.

MOLLYWhat brought all this on?

FRANKMaybe it was that Pierre of Paris kissing your hand.

MOLLYAhh, Pierre.

FRANKOr Peter in Rome. The way they looked at you made me quite randy.

MOLLYYou didn’t say so.

FRANKYou’re a very attractive woman.

MOLLYWere you jealous?

FRANKPossessive. 

MOLLYHow do you feel now?

FRANKGood. Holidays must improve in retrospect. “He travels safe, and not unpleasantly, who is guarded by poverty and guided by love.”

 

MOLLYAnother flash?

FRANKThe Sunday Times.  

MOLLYThe house looks a bit tired after the 5 star.

FRANKNot with you in it.

MOLLYI feel like getting on a plane and just flying away.

FRANKIt’s natural.

MOLLYWhat would you do if I did?

FRANKYou wouldn’t. 

MOLLYYou don’t think so?

 

FRANKHey. Come on, what’s wrong?

MOLLYI feel like I want to see lots and lots more.

FRANKIt’s the travel bug love. 

MOLLYYou haven’t got it.

FRANKWe’ll go again. (LAUGHS) I’ll tell you something else, while you were in that  shoe shop in Bangkok, I saw a sex shop... 

 

MOLLYAnd?

FRANKWell, strange country and all that. I’d have to be stiff to be spotted.

MOLLYDo you want to rephrase that?

FRANKThey had these things called sex  aids.

MOLLYYou didn’t buy any?

FRANKCustoms scared me off.

MOLLYWe don’t need sex  aids.

FRANKThey sell them on the internet. 

MOLLYNo! 

FRANKThey say sexual desire’s the first thing to go with old age.

MOLLYWhere does that leave me? 

FRANKHaven’t lost it yet. 

MOLLYGlad to hear it.

FRANKWhat’s next eh? Love. Solitude. Death?

MOLLYDid you know that Shelley was drowned when he was 30?

FRANKShelley?

MOLLYA very special poet. And you’re a dirty old man.

FRANKI don’t feel old.                                                                                                                                                      

MOLLYYou think we need titillation?

 

 

FRANKCan’t hurt to try.

MOLLYYou’d have to hide them. 

FRANKSeems a pity to be left with only erotic dreams. 

MOLLYWhat if something happened to us and the kids found them?

FRANKWe’d be six foot under!

MOLLYGoose.

FRANKTime goes so fast, doesn’t it? Nearly 38 years. Hard to believe. You try to

hang on, what’s left...treasure it, you know, but it zips by. 40, 50, 60..in a

flash. But the way I see it, if anything happened to you, without you...it would all stand still. Time...you know?

 

MOLLYYou’re not special Frank.

FRANKYou are.  (PAUSE) Are the kids bringing the dog?

MOLLYBob is.

FRANKWhat’s for tea?

MOLLYThai food?

FRANKI had a crazy thought for lamb chops and mashed potatoes, or a roast.

We’ve got enough hand soap for the next 3 years.

MOLLYAnd shower caps-

FRANKSewing kits, conditioners, frequent flyer points.  Let’s have a matinee?

MOLLYDouble feature?

FRANKI can try. 

MOLLY(SIGHS) I have to go shopping.

FRANKWe could eat out.

MOLLYThe kids would be disappointed.

FRANKWe’ve still got an hour. Let’s open the champers and retire to the bedroom.

MOLLYI don’t know. 

 

 

FRANKCome on. You’re gorgeous. And very sexy.

MOLLY(A SMILE) Lock the security door.

FRANKLeave it open.

MOLLYWhat about the kids?

FRANKThat’s their problem.

 

 

 

 

CURTAIN.                                

 

 

COPYRIGHT. Cliff Ellen

Rye. Vic. 3941.

0412-244-966

cliffie9@bigpond.com