So as soon as I give both men the heave ho, it’s as if a huge weight has been lifted – a sure sign of the right decision I feel! Another was that the ping of the phone heralding a text from either never filled me with joy or excitement, but rather a feeling of dread that they would be demanding more of my time.
The weather is still glorious and Max gets longer and longer walks filling up my time and I look into courses and activities that I hope may fill the autumnal evenings into the winter months, which will arrive all too soon I am sure. So far improvers French and salsa classes are looking good but disappointed that I have been unable to find a good choir – not I might add because of my singing, but more because of a plethora of female voices and a lack of men.
Amazingly only after two weeks of ‘singledom’, if I can call it that, Stephen texts – “As we remain friends, shall we meet for a drink sometime? We still have lots to talk about.” Really? I know the abruptness of my ending things confused him – men seem to be able to handle casualness so much easier. I tell him it is not a good idea and that I have plans – then blow me a week later and Mark is texting again. “How are things? Fancy a drink sometime?” No, No, No! The following week an invitation to dinner from Stephen – at first I accept but the night before I cancel. I really can’t face an evening being interrogated about the reasons/rational about how I wish to have/not have relationships in my life!
And then that text ping again – but this time it raises a wry smile. Charles, the adorable dishy doctor I met with nearly six months ago on the shaky pretext of practising yoga. His relationship has floundered and he wants to know if I fancy some easy uncomplicated company. Delighted as I am to hear from him again – once again I stall. Have I not just ditched the men in my life for this very reason? I don’t want casual. I want romance. I tell Charles about the other guys and how they have been ditched as they never really made me happy and his message seals the deal. I don’t know if I can make you happy but I would like to try ? How can I refuse!
So I go to his cottage one Friday evening and he meets me on the doorstep wearing his running gear and grinning broadly – he is F.I.T!!! I grin broadly too (and inwardly swoon). He pours me a glass of perfectly chilled white wine and invites me to chat while he showers! A huge sumptuous bathroom – twice the size of my bedroom and the sort you see in magazines with a huge picture window behind a huge roll top tub and a massive monsoon shower. I sink into a chair and sip my wine and watch him lathering up (and swoon again). We laugh as we soon realise conversation is not that simple with the thundering shower. But I am more than happy just admiring the view. He dresses and shows me around – he has good taste. We chat and chat and catch up and laugh (a lot), totally at ease in each other’s company. We listen to – of all things – Julio Inglesias (it was the first thing on shuffle). I laughed but we both knew all the words to all the cheesy hits and we danced and made our own beautiful music! Charles finally making supper about 10pm. He runs me a deep bubble bath and brings me another glass of wine while he rustles up an amazing salmon salad. We are both ravenous! The next morning we go off to the Cotswolds, walking for hours; the weather is perfect, we are never stuck for conversation, he shares his plans for the future and asks about my life and dreams and we end in a cosy pub for lunch. I decide to stay another night and we pop to Waitrose like an old married couple and make a Thai chicken curry with fresh chillies, peppers and tomatoes picked from the garden, cooking together and then snuggling up to watch a DVD. It really is a lovely weekend and I leave the following morning after croissants and coffee and we discuss meeting again before he goes to Japan for three weeks. I think because neither has expectations, we are good together – watch this space!