Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Sleeping sun

Round 14: Spring 2022
last update/next update

Ryland and Jackie Whitfield are 71.
(Stella is 58 and Deacon is 57.)


Narrated by Jackie Whitfield.

This is the first time in over 50 years that Ryland and I are living alone. We've always had at least one kid living with us but now they've all flown out of the nest.

It feels really strange but in a good way. Of course I miss Dawn and Zach but at the same time I'm enjoying this new found freedom. We're having dinners without teenagers arguing about curfews and homework and everything.

Lazy mornings when we linger in bed until we have to get up. No need to rush anyone to the school bus.

Ryland talked about retiring about two years ago but in the end he just couldn't leave the politics. People are relying on him and he just feels priviledged to represent our region in the senate. He's slowed down his pace though and sometimes doesn't even leave the house.

I'm doing fewer hours in the restaurant as well. I used to open it early in the morning to sell coffee and breakfast to the working people but nowadays Café Carousel is open from lunch time to 6 pm. It gives me time to read the morning paper and enjoy a healthy breakfast without burning my mouth with hot coffee.

We still have the dogs so I have someone to pamper and fuss about when I feel like it.

I recently hired Dawn's boyfriend Finn to work in the restaurant. I was a bit hesitant at first but so far it's been going great.

I expected him to be a spoilt brat because his parents are filthy rich but he's a hard worker and gladly does even the not so pleasant tasks like cleaning the tables and washing dishes. He seems really enthusiastic about the culinary world and often talks about his dream of running his own restaurant.

Things have been quite tense between me and Ryland and Finn's parents for about 20 years - for obvious reasons - but we're willing to make an effort for our kids. We're all Shea's grandparents so we want to at least get along for her sake.

Ryland and I invited Stella and Deacon over for dinner so that we could all get to know each other and maybe form some kind of truce. I prepared the dinner very carefully - filet mignon for main course - so that at least we'd be able to enjoy good food if everything else fell apart.

It was all a bit awkward at first. Stella and I have seen each other every now and then but never really spent any time together. Ryland meets Deacon quite often but they always talk about the town administration and nothing else. This was the first time that we got together socially.

We all loosened up during dinner and by the time we got to dessert I could tell that Stella and Deacon were actually enjoying the evening. I praised Finn for being a remarkable young man and that kind of broke the ice.

We had drinks after dessert. The men started talking about the city council and the new building projects. Stella looked at me and smiled.

"Do you ever get totally bored when they start talking about politics?" she said. I smiled, nodded and said that I'm glad I'm not the only one who finds the topic quite dull. The men then decided to go to Ryland's office to go over some figures on the city's budget so Stella and I were left alone.

"I hated you for years, you know" she suddenly said. "You weren't the only woman he was seeing but you were an easy target for my hate because you're a public figure. I held on to that grudge because it felt easier to keep hating you than to confess that it was just as much Deacon's fault."

"I don't know if I've ever apologized..." I started. She shook her head and said that she knew I was sorry and that she sort of understood why it all had happened.

"In a way I think it made our marriage stronger because we had to fight for it. I'm not saying that I'm glad that he had affairs all over town but I'm willing to believe that everything happens for a reason."

We sat in silence for a while.

We changed the subject and started talking about Shea and what a gorgeous little girl she is. We'll probably never be close friends but at least the conversation really cleared up the air and we can be civil towards each other.

Notes:
  • Title reference: Sleeping sun by Nightwish.
  • I had several crashes while playing the Whitfields but that often happens when I'm playing a bigger apartment lot so I'm not really worried. Luckily I got enough photos for the update.
  • I wanted to continue with the delicate situation between Stella and Jackie. I doubt they'll ever be real friends (just as Jackie said) but I felt that 20 years is enough for Stella to hold a grudge. They're both trying to do what's best for Dawn, Finn and Shea.

9 comments:

  1. I'm glad Stella and Jackie put aside their differences for their kids. They don't have to be best friends, but they get along, and familygatherings won't turn out in huge fights, which is nice for their kids.

    It must be strange for Jackie and Ryland to have the house to themselfs after all these years, it's good they are enjoying that time.

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  2. Goodness, I forgot that Zach and Dawn were such late-in-life babies for these two! After 50 years of raising kids, I'm glad Jackie and Ryland have some time to spend together alone now.

    I also forgot what had gone down with Deacon and Jackie all those years ago. How awkward but that was really big of Jackie to invite them over and to apologise and it was huge of Stella to be so civil about it. I'm glad they can have at least that much, for the sake of their kids and grandkids.

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  3. I was surprised that those two brought up the past and it was a bit weird seeing/hearing the 70/50 year olds talk about such things that happened ages ago.

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  4. Tanja, I felt like the whole feud, even though it hasn't been that visible, needed a proper closure. Hopefully the truce will hold.

    I bet it's strange for Jackie and Ryland to have the house for themselves. It definitely was strange for me to play just the two of them without any kids!

    Thanks for reading. :)

    Carla, the Whitfields are one of my weirdest families. Their oldest (Rianna) and youngest (Dawn & Zach) have a 34 year age difference!

    Things have been quite weird between Jackie & Ryland and Stella & Deacon especially after Dawn and Finn started dating. Imagine your kid dating your worst enemy's kid! I'm glad they were able to overcome what happened.

    Thanks for reading. :)

    Apple Valley, I'm sorry to hear you found it weird to see Jackie and Stella wanting to clear up the air and end the feud that's been going on for decades. I guess it's because I'm the kind of person who likes to talk things through instead of pretending that everything's just peachy so my sims are the same.

    Thanks for reading. :)

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  5. I'm sure that took a lot of strength for Stella to come over and be civilized. People have held grudges for a lot longer over something less complicated. Always good to have one less thing to stress over about, I say.

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  6. Choco, it wasn't easy for Stella but she knew it had to happen some time. Now they can all spend time together without the fear of a fight breaking out.

    Thanks for reading. :)

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  7. I'm glad that everyone could let what happened go. And I could believe that Stella hated Jackie and blamed it all on her. You see it often enough on mid-morning talk shows. But when they finally get over it, decide they're big enough to forgive and forget, that's a remarkable thing. I'm so glad for them.
    I forget that Stella and Deacon are as old as they are. Really, Jackie and Ryland too. Makes me wary; I don't want to see them go anytime soon.

    Welcome back!
    -Fini
    http://nh.infinitynevermore.net

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  8. Fini, people do hold grudges for decades, even on smaller things than this. I'm glad that Stella and Jackie were able to come to some kind of solution so that they can both enjoy being Shea's grandmothers.

    I often forget that Stella and Deacon will soon be elders, they seem so youthful to me. I know when my sims are going to die but I'm keeping it a secret. Is it creepy that I have a death schedule for my elders in my FlashNote? ;)

    Thanks for reading. :)

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  9. Time to play catch up!

    Man, I bet that was an awkward dinner but at least they cleared the air. Like she said, at least they can be civil now. Nothing like having family gatherings ruined by crazy events that happened in the past.

    And wow! 50 years of raising kids. I bet these 2 don't know what to do with themselves! But it looks like they're doing fine without all the rowdiness.

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