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 »  Home  »  Croatian Language  »  Miro Gavran's comedy available as Croatian-English parallel text
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Miro Gavran's comedy available as Croatian-English parallel text
By Miro Gavran | Published  11/16/2007 | Croatian Language , Culture And Arts | Unrated
Act 3


3. (bračno savjetovalište)
(Nina, Mia)

(Nina sjedi za stolom na kome su papiri koje preslaguje. Kucanje na vratima. Ulazi Mia.)

MIA: Oprostite, da li je ovo bračno savjetovalište?

NINA: Je.

MIA: Na vratima ništa ne piše.

NINA: Prošli mjesec su farbali svu drvenariju, pa još nisu vratili pločice, čak mislim da ćemo dobiti nove pločice.

MIA: A, tako. Trebala bih psihologinju Ninu.

NINA: Ja sam.

MIA: A, vi ste. To ste znači vi. Drugačije sam vas zamišljala.

NINA: Zaista?

MIA: Zaista.

NINA: Mi se znademo od nekuda... ili...

MIA: Čula sam o vama da ste odličan bračni... savjetnik, to se valjda tako kaže. Vi se razumijete u brakove... znadete kako pomoći nekom braku da ne izgnjili do kraja, nekom paru da njihova veza bude prava, da dobije novi zamah, vi se razumijete u to. Svi vas hvale da ste jako... vješta.

NINA: Vješta?

MIA: Da, vješta.

NINA: A čujte, drago mi je ako ste tako čuli, ako se to priča za mene. Ovdje radim tek četiri mjeseca, prije sam bila školski psiholog... sretna sam ako ljudi osjećaju da im mogu pomoći, da im znadem pomoći.

MIA: Da ste vješti... učinkoviti. Prava čarobnica.

NINA: Pa, sad.

MIA: Pomislila sam da biste i meni mogli pomoći, da bi i mome emotivno destabiliziranom mužu, tj. našoj vezi vi mogli biti pravi lijek.

NINA: Nadam se. Kako mislite lijek?

MIA: Apaurin, sedativ, antibiotik...

NINA: Ja bih to radije imenovala psihološkim terminima... nekada je za spas veze dovoljna tek prava riječ u pravom trenutku, topla riječ.

MIA: Ili pravi dodir.

NINA: Ili pravi dodir... kako mislite pravi dodir?

MIA: Ponekad stisak ruke puno znači... ili kad te netko pomazi po glavi... Kada sam ja bila djevojčica, sjećam se, kad bi me netko nježno pomazio po glavi, ili po licu, to bi bilo dovoljno da budem sretna cijeloga dana. Slažete li se sa mnom?

NINA: Svakako - i taktilni aspekt komunikacije je više nego bitan.

MIA: Vi bez sumnje volite svoj posao.

NINA: Jako.

MIA: I bilo bi vam strašno teško da vam to netko oduzme?

NINA: Naravno. Zašto pitate?

MIA: To znači da ste prava osoba na pravom mjestu, to znači da ste Bogom nadareni za taj posao, da ga ne radite radi novca, nego zbog unutrašnjeg zadovoljstva.

NINA: Točno.

MIA: Znala sam... jedino to je ono pravo, samo takvi ljudi mogu biti istinski ispunjeni, istinski sretni.
(Šutnja.)

NINA: Oprostite, ali, vi vjerojatno imate neki problem.

MIA: A, čujte, gospođice draga... Vi ste još uvijek gospođica?

NINA: Jesam.

MIA: Pretpostavljala sam - uspješne žene su jako dugo gospođice... što sam ono htjela reći - čujte gospođice draga, a tko danas nema problema, tko? Postoji li uopće čovjek na ovom svijetu pošteđen problema?

NINA: Mislila sam na bračne probleme.

MIA: Ah, da.

NINA: Vjerojatno želite da vam pomognem na tom planu.

MIA: Bila bih beskrajno sretna. I zahvalna vam do groba... pa i šire.

NINA: Pretpostavljam da ste u braku.

MIA: Zar bih dolazila u bračno savjetovalište da nisam u braku?

NINA: Svašta sam doživjela u ova četiri mjeseca.

MIA: Ne vjerujem da vam je došao netko tko nije u braku, ne računajući mlade parove koji se pripremaju za brak.

NINA: Bilo je i toga... bilo je i neudanih i neoženjenih i rastavljenih i udovica... Ljudi žele porazgovarati, žele utjehu i toplu riječ, neki žele razgovarati o budućnosti mada partner nije niti na pomolu.

MIA: Ja sam udana... službeno i pravno. Čak bih rekla da sam protekle 23 godine živjela u sretnom braku.

NINA: Pa gdje je onda problem?

MIA: U zadnje vrijeme ta sreća je pomućena, taj intenzitet je naglašen...

NINA: Zašto muža niste doveli ovdje? Problemi se mogu otkloniti samo ako su oba partnera spremna na suradnju. Do kraja, bez ostatka.

MIA: Da sam rekla mome suprugu da idem k vama na razgovor - on bi se izbezumio. Sumnjam da bi sa mnom pristao doći ovdje k vama.

NINA: Još uvijek mi niste rekli u čemu je problem. Odnosno u čemu vi mislite da je problem.

MIA: Vi sumnjate u moju procjenu.

NINA: Kako?

MIA: Vjerujete da objektivni problem i ono što "ja mislim" da je problem nije isto.

NINA: Nisam ništa rekla u tom smislu.

MIA: Moj muž ima ljubavnicu.

NINA: Jeste li sigurni u to?

MIA: Kao što sam sigurna da stojim pred vama.

NINA: Imate dokaze?

MIA: Čvrste dokaze. Znam kad je veza počela, znam i kako ljubavnica izgleda, čak sam i odlučila s njom porazgovarati o svemu...

NINA: Ne znam baš koliko vam je to pametno.

MIA: Ona ipak najbolje poznaje moga muža... nakon mene najbolje. Problem ne bi ni postojao da nije nje, zato mi se i činilo da je najbolje s njom porazgovarati. Inače, ona je mlađa od njega, i to puno.

NINA: Klasika.

MIA: Da, klasika. Možete misliti kako mi je bilo kada sam saznala da mi suprug ima ljubavnicu.

NINA: Žao mi je, doista mi je žao.

MIA: Ne možete ni pretpostaviti kako je to. Poželjela sam joj zubima pregristi grkljan. Nogu joj staviti u španjolsku čizmu. Gurnuti je pod tramvaj... onako u prolazu... da bude bez tragova. Shvaćate?

NINA: Shvaćam, shvaćam... to je ljudski.

MIA: Nemam kanibalskih sklonosti, ali već sam vidjela toliko puta kako joj grizem grkljan. Oprostite na izrazu.

NINA: Ništa, ništa - to je ljudski. I ja bih na vašem mjestu...

MIA: Ne sumnjam. Mislite li da mi možete pomoći?

NINA: Nadam se, samo moram saznati što više podataka o vama i vašem suprugu, i tek onda nas troje zajedničkim naporima, zajedničkim zalaganjem i suradnjom ponovno možemo uspostaviti poljuljanu harmoniju.

MIA: Baš ste zlatni ali ako nas troje zajednički budemo to rješavali, to bi za moj osjećaj bilo nešto kao grupni seks.
NINA: Kako mislite?

MIA: Bilo bi mi neugodno i pred njim i pred vama istodobno govoriti o intimnostima. Zato sam došla sama. Shvaćate?

NINA: Shvaćam, ali grupna terapija je puno učinkovitija.

MIA: Nisam vam ja za grupnjake. Draže mi je da na samo nas dvije sve dogovorimo.

NINA: Ja čak ne znam ni kako se vi zovete, ni kako se on zove. Ja moram od nečega krenuti, za nešto se uhvatiti.
MIA: Možda je najbolje da se uhvatite za njega... njegovo ime je Boris, ima 48 godina, radi kao trgovački putnik... izvanredno je studirao višu ekonomsku, ali za razliku od mene, nikada nije diplomirao... ta njegova ljubavnica 16 godina je mlađa od njega, već pet godina su u vezi, a on ju je svakog vikenda vodio sa sobom po provinciji, po Sloveniji, po Hrvatskoj, dok sam ja bila doma s djecom, poput Penelope.
(Nina se digne od stola.)

NINA: Ja, ja...

MIA: Sjedni!

NINA: Morala bih vodu popiti... vrti mi se u glavi.
MIA: Vrtit će ti se još više! Sjedni kad kažem! Prostakušo! Ljubavnico!

NINA: Ja nisam htjela, to se dogodilo!

MIA: Dosta jeftinih isprika. Sve znam.

NINA: Oprostite.

MIA: Ne opraštam.

NINA: Nisam vas željela povrijediti.

MIA: Ma nemoj. Ajme što smo fini. Licemjerko - radiš u bračnom savjetovalištu, a ženi otimaš muža. Sramota!

NINA: Oprostite, po tisuću puta oprostite.

MIA: Nisam došla po to "oprostite", ne treba mi to tvoje "oprostite", nisam došla radi toga.

NINA: Nego?

MIA: Došla sam da mi pomogneš da spasim brak.

NINA: Ja da vam pomognem?!?!

MIA: Naravno - ti si bračni psiholog, ti se razumiješ u to. Nadam se da ćeš biti profesionalna do kraja, da me nećeš odbiti samo zato što smo intimno vezane uz istog muškarca, uz istog kretena.

NINA: Ja... pa ja ću učiniti sve što mogu... ja ću se pokušati iskupiti koliko mogu i pomoći vam koliko je to moguće.
MIA: E, to sam i očekivala od tebe. Profesionalnost i kolegijalnost. Svaka čast.
(Šutnja... Gledaju se.)

NINA: Od kada znadete za nas?

MIA: Od početka... već više od pet godina. Muškarci su kao djeca... sve im piše na licu... čim je počeo odlaziti na te sumnjive vikende, čim sam vidjela da se po povratku doma trči tuširati, a sa mnom da razgovara kao službenik na šalteru, bez koncentracije... bilo mi je odmah jasno... A i u onim stvarima je bio vidljivo manje zainteresiran, manje napasan... brzo sam ga prokužila...

NINA: Nisam željela da se to dogodi.

MIA: Ma nemoj. Da ti ne bih povjerovala.

NINA: Pa zašto odmah niste reagirali?

MIA: Saznala sam tko si... u početku nisam željela da našoj djeci uskratiš pomoć, dok si radila u školi, a kasnije sam se navikla na to i shvatila sam da mi to čak i odgovara.

NINA: Da vam čak i odgovara?
MIA: Na izvjestan način. Boris je bio korektan prema meni i djeci, a to što ga često nije bilo doma... to mi je sve više odgovaralo. Imala sam vremena za sebe, za odlaske na hipodrom i aerobik, za čitanje, za kino, za druženje s prijateljicama. Moj život nije bio sveden na muža i djecu kako je to slučaj kod devedeset od sto žena. Jedino mi jedna stvar nije bila jasna.

NINA: Koja?

MIA: Što si ti uopće našla na njemu. On je s godinama postao tako dosadan, škrt, isključiv. Pitala sam se što mlada slobodna cura radi sa sredovječnim dosadnjakovićem.

NINA: Ako sve znate, onda vjerojatno znadete i to da smo prije četiri mjeseca prekinuli i da mu ja više nisam ljubavnica.

MIA: Naravno da znam. Zato sam i došla na ovaj razgovor.

NINA: Ne razumijem - mi više nismo u vezi i svi problemi su riješeni.

MIA: Naprotiv - problemi su i počeli otkako ti s njim više nisi u vezi. I to je razlog zašto sam ja ovdje.

NINA: E sad mi ništa nije jasno!?

MIA: Ništa ti nije jasno?

NINA: Baš ništa.

MIA: Polako - sve ću ti objasniti.

NINA: Oprostite za sve.

MIA: Molim te da mi se više ne ispričavaš, da ne glumiš finu djevojčicu, jer to nisi. A ako mi poželiš doista pomoći za to ćeš imati priliku. Samo me pažljivo saslušaj.

NINA: Slušam.

MIA: Otkako si nakon petogodišnje romanse ostavila moga muža, moj život je postao pakao. Bolje reći ostala sam bez svoga uhodanog života, prisiljena da odustanem od svih svojih navika, izgubila sam svoj mir, sve. Kako si ga mogla tako odbaciti, nakon svega što je učinio za tebe? Kako?

NINA: Pa, ne znam što da kažem.

MIA: Jadničak je pao u takvu depresiju, da su naša djeca pomislila da je teško bolestan... a onda, ubrzo potom, on je otkrio "ljepotu bračnog života" i počeo nas je maltretirati subotnjim izletima, nedjeljnim obiteljskim ručkovima, prestao je putovati, kao šef trgovačkih putnika može si priuštiti da radi samo uredske poslove, prestao je na večer odlaziti na hitne sastanke i svako, baš svako veče... bio je uz mene. Izbacio me iz uhodane svakodnevnice, onemogućio mi da nastavim sa svojim dosadašnjim druženjima, posesivno se bacio na mene i našu djecu... odjednom sam shvatila kako mi je bilo lijepo dok je imao ljubavnicu... Djeca su naravno prije mjesec dana pobjegla u svoj stan i spasila se daveža, a ja sam ostala izložena njegovom posesivnom društvu. Uz to: mi smo u proteklih pet godina... upražnjavali seks jednom mjesečno - što je moja prava mjera. Ja to ne volim baš prečesto, a u zadnja četiri mjeseca napastuje me čak dva puta mjesečno. To je povećanje za sto posto. Sve to s njim toliko me je izludjelo da sam shvatila da mi samo ti možeš pomoći, i da me samo ti možeš razumjeti, i da je to divna okolnost da ljubavnica moga muža radi kao psiholog u bračnom savjetovalištu. Intuitivno sam osjećala da me nećeš odbiti i da ćeš mi istinski pomoći.

NINA: Ne znam što bih rekla.

MIA: Ne moraš reći ništa, samo mi pomozi. Želiš li mi pomoći?

NINA: Jasno da želim.

MIA: Sjajno. Predivno. Znači pomoći ćeš mi?

NINA: Pokušat ću. Ako mogu.

MIA: Naravno da možeš. Divno je to što je moj muž odabrao tako dragu pozitivnu ljubavnicu. Divno je to što se nas dvije razumijemo. Baš mi je drago da smo se napokon upoznale ovako u živo. Intuicija me nije prevarila. Zgodna si... ljepuškasta... čini se i da si inteligentna i kao čovjek na svom mjestu... baš mi je drago.

NINA: Pa i meni je drago. Mada mi nije jasno kako vam ja mogu pomoći.
MIA: Ako želiš - lako.

NINA: Objasnite.

MIA: Vidiš, Nina, dok je moj muž imao ljubavnicu, dok je bio u vezi s tobom moj život je bio... bio je takav da sam ja bila zadovoljna s tim životom. Imala sam svoj svijet čak sam i s mužem i s djecom živjela u jednoj poželjnoj ravnoteži... ako shvaćaš što želim reći. Ali - otkako si ga ostavila sve je otišlo nizbrdo. Sve se zakompliciralo. Niti sam ja više sretna, niti on - a i djeca su pobjegla od nas zbog njegove posesivnosti. I sad... nakon dugotrajnog razmišljanja došla sam do zaključka da nam samo ti možeš pomoći.

NINA: Kako?

MIA: Budi mu opet ljubavnica. S tobom smo svi bili sretni i zadovoljni.

NINA: Vi se šalite!?

MIA: Ni najmanje. Problemi se mogu riješiti samo ako mu ti opet budeš ljubavnica. Naravno, on ne smije saznati za vaš razgovor - jer bi u tom slučaju taj preljub izgubio draž zabranjenog voća, skrivanja i maskiranja. A znaš kakvi su muškarci - oni vole samo zabranjeno voće.

NINA: Gospođo vi niste normalni!

MIA: Ma nemoj - ja nisam normalna?! Bezobrazna balavice. Ševila si se s mojim mužem pet godina, nabijala si mi rogove uzduž i poprijeko, a sad se još usuđuješ meni, zakonitoj ženi, reći da nisam normalna. E stvarno si prava kurva!

NINA: Oprostite, nisam vas htjela povrijediti - jednostavno zbunjena sam.

MIA: Ne zanima me tvoja zbunjenost, nego me zanima jesi li mi spremna pomoći, ili mi nisi spremna pomoći.

NINA: To nije tako jednostavno - meni je njega bilo dosta u tih pet godina, ja bih voljela da se u mom životu pojavi netko drugi. On mi je jednostavno rečeno dosadio.

MIA: A što misliš koliko je tek meni dosadio u protekle 23 godine. Dakle - hoćeš li mi pomoći, ili mi nećeš pomoći?
(Šutnja.)

NINA: Što će biti ako odbijem?

MIA: Ako odbiješ - potrudit ću se da tvoji šefovi saznaju da živiš kao ljubavnica, potrudit ću se da i u novinama osvane vijest da u bračnom savjetovalištu radi žena koja nema moralne kvalitete za taj posao.
(Nina se okrene prema publici.)

NINA: Ovo je ucjena, klasična ucjena. Još prije tri godine pomislila sam prvi put da trebam prekinuti s Borisom, i da sam tada to učinila, danas ne bih bila u ovoj glupoj situaciji. Ali, nije lako prekinuti, nije lako nekome tko tebe obasipa ljubavlju, reći: ja više ne želim s tobom. Prije nego li je on ušao u moj život, nisam mogla ni u snu pomisliti da bih jednoga dana mogla postati nečija ljubavnica. To mi je bilo nezamislivo. Znala sam da to nije za mene, mada je u početku bilo neke draži u svemu tome, bilo je nekog uzbuđenja koje izostaje u običnim vezama. I kad sam napokon uspjela prekinuti s njim, kad sam pomislila da je zauvijek gotovo s tim skrivanjima i prerušavanjima, da je gotovo s vezom koja je izgubila svoj identitet, da okrećem novu stranicu - moja prošlost mi se nenadano vratila kao bumerang. Što da kažem osim da je ova žena prema meni tako bezobrazna da ne znam što učiniti. Nekada me je istinski pekla savjest što spavam s njezinim mužem, a sada mi se čini da mogu shvatiti Borisa zašto je pored nje ovakve nježnost morao potražiti kod druge. Vjerojatno i vi slutite da mi je stalo do mog radnog mjesta. Volim posao koji obavljam. Osjećam da znam kako ljudima pomoći, kako spasiti brakove koji kreću krivim smjerom. To što sam i sama sudjelovala u nastanku i egzistiranju jednog bračnog trokuta, to mi je u profesionalnom smislu samo veliki plus. Na taj način sam saznala više o disfunkcionalnosti bračnog mehanizma, nego što bih saznala na dvadeset seminara i na deset psihoterapija. To praktično dodatno iskustvo mi pomaže u poslu, ali ova neugodna oštrokondža bi me doista mogla javno napasti i dovesti do toga da izgubim radno mjesto do koga mi je stalo. Uz to bih još bila i javno osramoćena.

(Nina se "vrati" u scenu s Miom.)

NINA: Zar ne bi bilo puno bolje i učinkovitije za rješenje nastalog problema da sami pokušate s njime otvoreno porazgovarati o svemu što vam smeta, a on neka jednako otvoreno iskaže svoje primjedbe na vašu zajednicu, i u jednom konstruktivnom dijalogu mogli biste...

MIA: Slušaj balavice, ja nisam došla u bračno savjetovalište po tvoj savjet, nego sam došla da ja tebi kažem što trebaš činiti, ako ne želiš izgubiti svoje radno mjesto.

NINA: Stvarno ste gori i od najgore...

MIA: Vidiš da nemaš izbora, kolegice.

 


3. (The Marriage Counselling Centre)
(Nina, Mia)

(Nina is seated, arranging papers at her desk. A knock at the door. Mia comes in.)

MIA: Excuse me, is this the Marriage Counselling Centre?

NINA: Yes.

MIA: There's no sign on the door.

NINA: They painted the woodwork last month, and haven't yet returned the signs. I think we are even getting new ones.

MIA: Ah, I see. I am looking for Nina, the psychologist.

NINA: That's me.

MIA: Ah. So you are Nina. I imagined you differently.

NINA: Really?

MIA: Yes, really.

NINA: Do we know each other some somewhere... or...

MIA: I heard that you were an excellent marriage... counsellor, that's what they call it, I suppose. You understand marriages... you know how to help so that a marriage does not rot completely away, how to give it new vigour, you know how it's done. Everyone praises you for being so very... skilful.

NINA: Skilful?

MIA: Yes, skilful.

NINA: Look, I am glad if you have heard such comments, if that's what people say about me. I have only been working here for four months, I was a school psychologist before that... I am really happy if people feel that I can help them, that I know how to help them.

MIA: That you are skilful... and effective. A real enchantress. NINA: Well, I wouldn't say that...

MIA: So I thought that you could help me, too, and my emotionally unstable husband, that is, you could be the right remedy for our relationship.

NINA: I hope so. What do you mean by remedy?

MIA: You know, Prozac, a sedative, an antibiotic...

NINA: I would rather use psychological terms... sometimes, the right word at the right moment, a warm word, is enough to save a relationship.

MIA: Or the right touch.

NINA: Or the right touch... what do you mean, the right touch?

MIA: Sometime a squeeze of the hand can mean a lot... or if someone strokes your head... When I was a little girl, I remember if someone patted my head, or my face, that was enough for me to be happy all day long. Do you agree?

NINA: Of course - the tactile aspect of communication is more than important.

MIA: You undoubtedly like your job.

NINA: Very much so.

MIA: And it would be terribly tough for you if someone took it away from you?

NINA: Of course. Why do you ask?

MIA: That means that you are the right person in the right place, that means that you have God's gift for this job, that you don't do it for the money, but because of inner satisfaction.

NINA: Exactly.

MIA: I knew it... that's the real thing, only such people can be really fulfilled and really happy.
(Silence.)

NINA: But excuse me, you probably have some particular problem.

MIA: Ah, listen here my dear young miss... You are still a Miss?

NINA: Yes, I am.

MIA: I assumed so - a successful woman remains a Miss for quite some time... What was it I wanted to say? - look, young lady, who is without problems today, who, I ask you? Is there anyone in this whole world who is spared problems?

NINA: I meant marriage problems.

MIA: Ah yes.

NINA: You probably want me to help you in that area.

MIA: I would be endlessly happy if you could. And grateful to the grave... and beyond.

NINA: I assume you are married.

MIA: I would hardly be coming to a marriage counsellor if I wasn't.

NINA: I have experienced all sorts of things in these four months.

MIA: I can't believe that anyone who wasn't married would come to you, apart from young couples planning to marry.

NINA: Even that... there were those who were unmarried and those who were divorced and widows... People want to talk, they need comfort and a warm word, and some want to talk about the future even if there is no partner on the horizon.

MIA: I am married... officially and legally. I would even say that I have lived in a happy marriage for the last 23 years.

NINA: Well then, where's the problem?

MIA: Lately there has been a shadow over that happiness, the intensity has changed...

NINA: Why didn't you bring your husband with you? Problems can be eliminated only when both partners are prepared to co-operate. To the limit, with no holding back.

MIA: If I had told my husband that I was coming to talk to you - he would have freaked out. I doubt he would have agreed to come here with me.

NINA: You still haven't told where the problem lies. Or, that is, what you think the problem is.

MIA: You doubt my judgement?

NINA: Excuse me?

MIA: You believe that the objective problem and what "I think" are not the same thing.

NINA: I didn't mean it in that sense.

MIA: My husband has another woman.

NINA: Are you sure?

MIA: As sure as I am standing here in front of you.

NINA: Do you have any proof?

MIA: Firm proof. I know when the affair began, I know what she looks like, and I have even decided to speak to her about it all...

NINA: I am not sure that that would be wise.

MIA: Still, she knows my husband best... after me, that is. There would be no problem without her, and that's why I have decided it would be best to confront her. Otherwise, she is younger than he is, much younger.

NINA: The usual thing.

MIA: Yes, the usual thing. You can image how I felt when I found out that my husband had a girlfriend.

NINA: I am sorry, I really am sorry.

MIA: You couldn't even imagine what this is like. I wanted to tear out her throat with my teeth. To put her in a Spanish Boot. Push her under a tram... just by the way, in passing... so as to leave no clues. Do you understand?

NINA: Yes, I understand... that's only human.

MIA: I don't have any cannibalistic inclinations, but I have already seen me biting her throat many time. Excuse the expression.

NINA: Not at all, not at all - it's a human reaction. And I would feel like that, in your place...

MIA: I don't doubt it. Do you think you can help me?

NINA: I hope so, but I have to know as many details as possible about you and your husband, and only then can the three of us working together, co-operating in a joint effort, manage to restore that shaken equilibrium.

MIA: That's sweet of you, but if the three of us would have to solve this problem together, that would feel something like group sex as far as I am concerned.

NINA: What do you mean?

MIA: I would feel uncomfortable talking to both of you at the same time about such intimate matters. That's why I came here alone. Do you understand?

NINA: Yes, I do, but group therapy is much more effective.

MIA: I am against that group stuff. I prefer for just the two of us to come to an agreement.

NINA: I don't even know your name, or his name. I have to start somewhere, to have something to get to grips with.

MIA: Perhaps you should get to grips with him... his name is Boris, he is 48 years old, and he works as a commercial traveller... He studied advanced economics as a night student but, unlike me, he never got his degree... that mistress of his is 16 years younger than he is, it's been going on for five years now, and he used to take her with him through the provinces every weekend, in Slovenia, in Croatia, while I was home with the kids, waiting like Penelope.
(Nina rises to her feet behind the table.)

NINA: I, I...

MIA: Sit down!

NINA: I should drink some water... I am feeling dizzy.

MIA: You're going to feel even dizzier! Sit down when I tell you! You bitch! You fancy woman!

NINA: I didn't mean to, it just happened!
MIA: Yu can forget the refined excuses. I know everything.

NINA: Forgive me.

MIA: I forgive nothing.

NINA: I did not mean to hurt you.

MIA: You don't say. Aren't we the lady now! Hypocrite - working as a marriage counsellor, and stealing a woman's husband. Shame on you!

NINA: I'm sorry, please forgive me.
MIA: I did not come here for that "forgive me", I don't need it. That's not why I'm here.

NINA: Why then?

MIA: I came for you to help me save my marriage.

NINA: Me - help you!?!

MIA: Of course - you are the marriage psychologist, you understand such things. I hope you will act professionally, that you won't turn me down just because we are intimately connected to the same man, the same idiot.

NINA: I... well, I'll do anything I can... I shall try to make it up to you in any way I can, in any way possible.

MIA: Ah, that's just what I expected from you. Professionalism and a willingness to help. Well done.
(Silence... They eye each other.)

NINA: How long have you known?

MIA: From the very beginning... for more than five years. Men are like children... it's all there in their faces... as soon as he started going off on those suspicious weekends, as soon as I saw that he rushed to shower the minute he came home, and spoke to me like a clerk behind a counter, his thoughts somewhere else... it was all clear... And he was obviously less interested in... you know... less demanding... I saw through him very quickly...

NINA: I never wanted it to happen.

MIA: Really. And I'm supposed to believe you.

NINA: Why didn't you react immediately?

MIA: I found out who you were... in the beginning I didn't want to stop you helping our children, while you were still working at the school, and later... well, I just got used to it and realised that it was even for the better as far as I was concerned.

NINA: Even for the better?

MIA: In a certain way. Boris behaved correctly with me and the children, and the fact that he was rarely at home... it suited me more and more. I had time for myself, to go to the riding club and aerobics classes, time for reading, the cinema, for socialising with my friends. My life was not reduced to merely my husband and children as it is with ninety percent of women. But there was just one thing I could never understand.

NINA: What was that?

MIA: What on earth did you ever see in him? As he has grown older, he has become so boring, miserly and exclusive. I asked myself what a liberated young woman was doing with a middle-aged pain in the neck.

NINA: If you know everything, then you probably also know that we broke it off four months ago and that I am no longer his girlfriend.

MIA: Of course I know. That's just why I have come to have this talk with you.
NINA: I don't understand - we have broken it off and there are no more problems.

MIA: Quite the contrary, in fact - the problems started when you stopped seeing him. And that's the reason for my being here.

NINA: Now I'm really confused.

MIA: You don't understand?

NINA: Not a thing.

MIA: Take it easy now - I shall explain it all.

NINA: Please forgive me for everything.
MIA: Would you please stop saying that and playing the sweet miss role, because it doesn't suit you. But, if you really want to help me you will have your chance. Just listen carefully.

NINA: I am listening.

MIA: Since you left my husband after this five-year romance, my life has become pure hell. In a word: I have lost my smoothly running life, I am forced to give up all my preoccupations, I have lost my peace of mind, I have lost everything. How could you just break off with him like that, after everything he had done for you? How could you?

NINA: I don't know what to say.

MIA: The poor thing became so depressed that the children thought that he was seriously ill... and then, soon after that, he discovered the "joys of married life" and started tormenting us with Saturday trips, Sunday family lunches, he stopped travelling - he could do that as the leader of the salesmen group, he could stay in the office - he stopped going out to 'urgent' meetings in the evenings, and every evening, absolutely every evening, there he was right next to me. He put an end to my cosy everyday life, made it impossible for me to continue my socialising, possessively took hold of me and our children... suddenly I realised how great life had been when he had had an outside interest... Naturally enough, the children made their escape to a flat of their own a month ago and saved themselves, but I am stuck there in his possessive company. And besides: over the last five years - we have practised sex once a month - which is around my limit. I don't like it too often, but for the last four months he has been pestering me as many times as twice a month. And that's an increase of 100 percent. All this business with him is driving me crazy and I have realised that only you can help me, and only you can understand me, and that it is a wonderful thing that the my husband's girlfriend works as a psychologist in a marriage guidance centre. I felt intuitively that you wouldn't say 'no' and that you would really help me.

NINA: I don't know what to say.

MIA: You don't have to say anything - just help. Will you help me?

NINA: Of course I will.

MIA: Wonderful. Brilliant. So that means you will help me?

NINA: I will try. If I can.

MIA: Of course you can. It's great that my husband chose such a dear, positive woman. It's great that you and I understand each other. I am really pleased that we have finally met, in the flesh so to say. My intuition did not fail me. You are good-looking... pretty... and it seems that you are intelligent and a decent person... I am so pleased.

NINA: Well, I'm pleased, too. Although it's not clear to me how I can help you.

MIA: If you only want to - easily.

NINA: Please explain.

MIA: You see, Nina, while my husband had a girlfriend, while his affair with you was going on, my life was... it was just as I wanted it to be for me to be satisfied with it. I had my own world and even lived with my husband and children in a desirable equilibrium... if you understand what I am trying to say. But - everything went downhill after you left him. Everything became complicated. I am not happy any more, and neither is he - and the children have run away from us because he is so possessive. And now - after thinking about it deeply, I have come to the conclusion that you are the only one who can help us.

NINA: But how?

MIA: Be his lover again. We were all happy and satisfied with you.

NINA: You must be joking!

MIA: Not in the least. All our problems can be solved if only you will start up your affair with him again. Of course, he must know nothing of our conversation - because, in that case, his adultery would lose its attraction as forbidden fruit, all that hiding and disguise. And you know what men are like - they only enjoy forbidden fruit.

NINA: Madame, you are abnormal!

MIA: You don't say - I'm abnormal? Your rude little bitch. You have been bonking with my husband for five years, making a fool of me all over the place, and now you dare to tell me - his legal wife - that I am abnormal. You really are a whore!

NINA: I'm sorry, I did not mean to offend you - I am simply confused.

MIA: I am not interested in your confusion. What I am interested in is whether you are prepared to help, or not prepared to help.
NINA: It's not so simple - I was fed up with him after those five years, and I would like it if someone else came into my life. He simply bored me to death.
MIA: Surely you don't think he hasn't bored me to death in these last 23 years. Well - are you going to help me or not?
(Silence.)

NINA: And what if I refuse?

MIA: If you refuse - I shall make sure that your superiors know that you have be living as the other woman, and I shall make sure that a news item appears in the newspapers about a woman working at the marriage counsel centre who is woefully lacking in the moral qualities demanded by such a job.
(Nina turns towards the audience.)

NINA: This is blackmail, a classical case of blackmail. I first thought about breaking up with Boris three years ago, and if I had done it then, I wouldn't be in this stupid situation today. But it's not easy to break off an affair, it's not easy to tell someone who showers you with expressions of love: I don't want to be with you anymore. Before he came into my life, I never imagined I would one day become the other woman in some woman's marriage. It was unconceivable to me. I knew that it wasn't for me, even though there was a sort of thrill about it all in the beginning, some excitement lacking in ordinary relationships. And now, when I have finally managed to break off with him, when I thought that all that hiding and disguise was behind me forever, that the affair in which I had lost my identity was finished and that I was turning over a new leaf - my past has unexpectedly returned to me like a boomerang. What can I say except that this woman is so insolent towards me that I don't know what to do. Once, my conscience was very uneasy about me sleeping with her husband, but now it seems to me that I can understand Boris for looking for tenderness with somebody else. You probably are aware that my job means a great deal to me. I love the work I do. I feel that I know how to help people, how to save marriages that go off in the wrong direction. The fact that I have myself participated in the emergence and existence of a love triangle is only a great advantage to me in the professional sense. In that way I have found out more about the dysfunction of the marriage mechanism than I could have learnt at twenty seminars and ten psychotherapy sessions. That practical experience helps me in my job, but this unpleasant shrew really could attack me in public and lead to my losing my job that I care about so much. And I would also be publicly humiliated.
(Nina "returns" to the scene with Mia.)

NINA: Wouldn't it be much better and more effective for you yourself to seek out the solution to this problem and talk to him openly about everything that is bothering you. He could then equally openly express his objections about the way your married life is going, and in a constructive dialogue you could...

MIA: Listen, young lady, I haven't come to this centre to ask for your advice, but to tell you what you must do unless you want to lose your job.

NINA: You really are the worst of the worst...

MIA: You can see you have no choice, dear colleague.


 


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