The Ballroom Class 4 (Pages 281-359)

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This part of the book is quite sad.

Katie doesn’t have it easy, and I even feel sorry for her. What is happening to Jo is being a real eye-opener. The day Jo, Ross, and the children are to return, she goes to Jo’s to place some flowers and freshen up. Then Greg appears, and from what he says, Katie realises how wrong she has been about Greg. He has no compunctions to vilify his wife, calling her a slob or a cow. Katie is disgusted and realises how different Ross is, and she understands that Jo is much better off without this man.

After a misunderstanding with Jo, who returns to find Katie and Greg and thinks they are having an affair, Katie manages to explain the truth, and she and Ross take the children for some fun. When they are at home, Katie and Ross talks. He has been thinking, and now that he knows Katie doesn’t love him, he has reached a decision. They can’t afford to change their living arrangements as he looks after the children and has no job, and Katie works many hours to look after the children. So he thinks they should remain the same, but they will be like house mates, and he will sleep in the spare room. It is really sad, and Katie feels broken. Yet, she is the one who started the whole thing. As Ross said, she can’t unsay what she blurted out about not loving him, or explain that she didn’t mean it. Her words are there, and without love there is no marriage. I feel so sorry for them. I don’t think Katie is so indifferent to Ross as she claims. I think the problems lies somewhere else. In my opinion I think that she is miserable at work because this tense atmosphere in the office has got to her. She has to compete with these men who look down on her and use her gender to demean her, so she has more pressure than her colleagues. Her misery is also increased with her absence in her children’s lives. So my guess that all this misery makes her unable to feel much attraction to her husband. She only feels dejection, and even though she might not be aware of it, those bleak feelings are part of her.

As for Lauren, her dream wedding is not to be. First, she learns that her mother has terrible financial problems and owes a lot of money. So Lauren thinks that she will need to downsize the wedding and do without some things. Then she has a couple of shocks when she gets to talk to Chris. In the flat she finds a girl who has spent the night there, and she tells Laura that she has been with Chris and not Kian. Naturally, Lauren is furious and distraught as she leaves the flat and drives around the town. She ends up in a park and on a bench where she and Chris used to spend a great deal of time. Chris and Kian find her there, and Kian confesses that she used Chris’s name for some reason, but the girl she found in the flat was with him, and not Chris. When after the misunderstanding, Chris and Lauren are left alone, Chris takes the plunge and talks about his feelings. He explains that he is not sure he wants to get married now. Lauren is shocked, and Chris tries to reassure her. He still loves her as much as always, but he feels that since they are engaged, she only talks about the wedding, and he has the impression that the wedding is more about herself than getting married to him. So hurt as she was, she agrees that they should give themselves a few days to think, and they will talk again on Wednesday. I have to say I agree with Chris. Lauren is too focused on all the frills, and not so much on the reasons why she wants to get married.

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