I Need To Get Out More
My son’s eyes lit up as we entered the cinema foyer. A pick’n’mix beyond the imagination, more popcorn that we had ever seen in one place; grab bags of everything high calorie. He decided to move in.
We were a bit early for the movie. About half an hour early. But the trip was full of novelty value for us both – I haven’t been to the pictures in YEARS. It was all different. I don’t know if that cinema was even built when he was born. I was very pleased I had successfully bought tickets online and managed to coax them out of a machine at the front door, before escalatoring our way to the foyer for “Screen 9”.
We were the only people there.
But we were early.
So we bought a round of pic’n’mix, two bags of popcorn (one sweet, one salt) and a cup of tea. The girl stood in the taking-tickets bit and we gave her them, she returned our stubs and directed us to the second door on the left.
My son heaved the door open to a dark passageway lit by a dim red light. He then heaved a second door open into complete darkness. I couldn’t see my feet. The tea was beginning to burn my fingers, and I hoped there weren’t any steps, or sudden changes in gradient.
As our eyes got used to the darkness, I could see two rows of pin-pricks of light and the topography of the auditorium became apparent. My son went up the stairs in the middle and we sat down. I fumbled around and found the cup-holder for the tea and we wired into the popcorn.
It was very dark.
It was very quiet.
We were very alone.
Unperturbed, we continued to eat and chat in the inky silence. It reminded me of that bit in the Matrix when everything is white and Keanu Reeves is talking to Laurence Fishburne (?) in a kind of ante-room to reality.
I began to wonder if we were the only people coming. I felt a bit bad that I’d gone for the 2D tickets – maybe everyone else was at the 3D showing?
At two-minutes to go – I thought: “No.” Something is afoot.
We picked up our belongings – we had night vision by this time – and left the auditorium, stumbled into the blinding light of the foyer and re-counted the doors to find we had been behind the THIRD on the left.