Hockey Girl and Asterix talked about their wedding a little bit at dinner, it was nice to hear them open up and chat about their plans.

Some engaged couples can talk about nothing else and act like they’re the only people in the history of the universe to have ever had to plan a wedding, but these two never do, and even when they did they were really relaxed and matter of fact.

Crayfish are disgusting, it turns out. The actual taste is kind of okay, nothing special, just fishy, but the way you have to rip them apart, “be careful of his brains,” Asterix warned me at one point, which is a phrase I never, ever, want to hear while I’m eating. The snaps helped. The Viking said that you need the snaps to deal with the crayfish, and the potatoes to deal with the snaps. I think I could have handled the snaps without the potatoes, but I couldn’t handle the crayfish looking at me while I ripped its head off. Asterix offered to take “his” eyes out for me, I told him that really wouldn’t help and asked him to please stop calling it “him” because that personalized it and made it worse. They all laughed like crazy, and ABBA Girl said, “oh Regan, you are amazing.”

I gave up on the fish and just ate potatoes and bread which you would have thought would keep me sober, but I guess all that snaps is a force to be reckoned with. I like how they sing before taking a shot. I loved the Viking’s face, wearing that stupid pointy hat with a smiling crayfish on it, grinning so wide his cheeks must have ached, singing this deep base and conducting the others then bellowing, “skål!” His mood had shifted by then, as usual, like the sun coming out from behind a cloud and it’s so bright and glorious you can barely remember it was ever cloudy. He sang as he cooked the potatoes, and played with my hair at the table, and kept leaning over to give me kisses between shots.

At one point while we were talking about the wedding, Asterix said, “do you all know about the time Anders was engaged?” Even as drunk as I was, my insides liquidized for just a moment and a foghorn blared though my brain, “Jenny Jenny Jenny” – so much so, that it took me a second to realize they were all laughing. Asterix went on to tell us about how, when they were about 10 at school, a little girl called Liv used to tie Anders’ shoes for him every day at recess, because he couldn’t. I was like, “at 10? Dude!” and he shrugged and said he was useless. One day, Liv informed him that her mommy thought they should get married, and Anders said okay. Then at the end of recess she ran up to him and announced that she didn’t want to marry him after all, but would still tie his shoelaces. We all cracked up and Anders insisted he had been devastated. I asked him what he did, and he replied, “I learned to tie my own shoelaces.”

I have just remembered something, in fact. It was around then that ABBA Girl tried to say something to the Viking. I remember because her intense demeanor came over her again and it crossed my mind that she had to ruin it when I was just starting to like her. She spoke in Swedish so I don’t know what she said, but Anders replied, in English, “not right now Hanna” and got up from the table. He was sitting in between us, so when he got up we found ourselves looking at each other and she had this weird expression on her face and it crossed my mind that this intense thing she wanted to say to Anders was something to do with me. On the spur of the moment I started to ask her what it was, but she just smiled and said, “skål” and took a shot, and the moment passed.

I guess Anders told the police about that. “I was just starting to like her.” I can’t believe I just typed that.