The Ballroom Class 3 (Pages 117-281)

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Katie is going from bad to worse.

She keeps moaning about her husband and not appreciating what he actually does. The counselling sessions are helping when during one she blurts out that she is still with him only for the children. She then admits that she cares for him not as a man, but like a brother. Ross takes her words too calmly, but he is hurt. When they get home, he sleeps in another bedroom, but he won’t speak as he tells her he needs time to think. I am afraid that Katie is going to regret what she is doing. I have the impression that she is so negative about everything and that negativeness is dying everything in her life. I also think that she doesn’t really enjoy her job. She thinks she does, but it is clear that she is not happy there, and her office has become a refuge, but nothing else.

Her big mistake is that the weekend when Hannah and Ross had their shared birthdays she booked a trip for the four of them as well for Jo and her family. Yet, she forgot about it, so she found herself tied with work and unable to take the time off. Ross hadn’t appreciated that, and that was before she dropped her bomb during the counselling session.

The following day after their spat Katie returns home to find Jo’s children there, and Ross tells her that Greg, Jo’s husband, has walked out on his family. Katie goes to comfort JO, who tells her that Greg told her that he was leaving because she had let herself go and he felt neglected as she had put the children before him. Katie sees herself in Greg, so she is a bit defensive in what Jo says. Katie also tells him about how things are between Ross and her, and Jo tells her repeatedly to consider what she is doing as Ross is a good man, and a bad patch is not the end of a marriage. I think Katie should be careful because Jo and Ross have become close, and both of them are in a vulnerable position. Yet, Katie doesn’t think about that, and she has no objections when Ross and Jo leave together for the weekend Katie paid for. I’m afraid that Jo and Ross might want to comfort each other, forgetting that they are still married. I hope that I’m wrong, and Ross and Jo are just friends and love Katie to do anything. I have to say that Katie doesn’t deserve any loyalty from Ross. I can understand she has stopped loving him, if that is the case, but what I don’t like about Katie that she complains about Ross all the time and never stops to say a good thing about him. I am surprised that it is Katie who claims to have stopped loving Ross, and not the other way around. With such a sourpuss for a wife I wouldn’t have been surprised if Ross had fallen out of love with her.

At work Katie has realised that the Memorial Hall where they have their ballroom classes is part of a development project she is involved in, and developers intend to knock it down. So she has started to study the building, feeling it is not right. If part of the patrimony of the town is destroyed, there won’t be left anything that defines it. Katie knows that she is putting her job at risk, but she has confided in Bridget, telling her that if there is pressure from local groups, the Memorial Hall might be respected, so Bridget is going to look into it.

As for Bridget and her family, she is going through a bad patch too. Her husband doesn’t realise they are into debt, and he keeps buying gadgets, not to mention the expenses that their daughter’s extravagant wedding is creating. On top of it all, Lauren is not happy with Chris living with Kian as she feels she is losing him. So she has been advised to put the deposit for a new house that will be finished in the spring. The problem is that she doesn’t have enough for the deposit, so she asks her father, and he has agreed to lend her the money, not checking with his wife. So now to Bridget’s consternation they are even in bigger debt. I find Bridget’s attitude here a bit foolish. Why doesn’t she tell Frank how things are financially? And how come this man doesn’t have the first idea how much they have and owe? Silly woman!!!

As for Angelica, we get to know a bit more. Apart from her love story with Tony, she married an American widower, but this man left her for a younger woman who gave her a family. Angelica’s life has been full of light and darkness. Now she has discovered something about herself as she looks at her mother’s photo albums. There she finds a letter from her mother to be read in the event of her death. In the letter Pauline tells her daughter that she was the best thing to happen to her, and she confesses that she and Cyril couldn’t have children, so they are not her birth parents. She was the daughter of a girl that Pauline knew and who couldn’t look after her. I imagine we will learn more about this later. I have the hunch that maybe Angelica’s family is the Cartwrights, who she mentions in relation to the Memorial Hall as benefactors. Maybe that is what Katie will discover if she investigates the history of the building to stop the developers from destroying it. If the building comes from Angelica’s family, it’ll mean it belongs to her, and she might stop the developers.

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