I woke up a few minutes after 5am. It was still dark and Musician Gal was sound asleep. My mind immediately starting an endless sprint of images, memories and feelings from the previous day. My psyche was disturbed because I had high hopes of having a relationship with Musician Gal. I convinced myself that perhaps I was being too harsh and should give her another day. Perhaps it would be better later this day. There was much to look forward to. The farmer’s market, a lunch of exotic meats and a drive in the country could make it all so much better. She might relax and perhaps even apologize for her tactlessness. Telling myself this eased my troubled mind and I went back to sleep.
9am and I’m awake again, ready and cautiously optimistic that today would be better, remembering my inner dialogue from earlier in the morning. Musician Gal was doing her imitation of a corpse, lying almost in the exact position that I had last seen her in before I switched the light out. When I’m awake, I’m awake. I didn’t want to lie there, fidgeting or tossing and turning, only to irritate her and get the day off to a bad start. I got up as gingerly as I could and quietly made my way to the kitchen. I closed the two doors between the bedroom and kitchen so that any noise I made didn’t disturb her. The kettle boiled unusually loudly while I found the honey and soya milk for her tea. I made myself a regular cuppa of redbush tea and got a pack of milk chocolate hobnobs from the shelf reserved for my stash of them. I tidied the kitchen a bit from the previous night’s cooking and eating, trying to make it a bit more tidy as I didn’t want it looking like a dump when she entered it.
A mug of tea in each hand and a pack of hobnobs nestled under an arm, I carefully and quietly made my way back to the bedroom, using my feet to open doors. I was still naked and must have made for quite a sight. Putting her tea by her bedside without spilling, bumping or dropping anything was a small achievement. Safely positioning my tea and the biscuits by my bedside, I slid back in to the warm bed. It was a chilly morning and my morning glory had deflated by the time I got to the kitchen. Lying next to Musician Gal I could feel my blood warming again and the thought of Sunday morning sex, one of my favourite thoughts, appeared simultaneously in my two heads.
She started to stir from her slumber, finally moving and rolling slowly on to her back. As she turned I got a good view, despite the low lighting, of her left breast, just the shape and outline of it. I wanted to suck on it, take as much of it as I could in to my mouth and then twirl my tongue around the nipple. Women seem to love that move and it seems to turn them on. She still had her nightmask on and I thought that keeping it on during sex would heighten her other sensations. I was horny and hoped that she was too, having played all coy for a day and a half, building the sexual tension. The disappointments of the previous day were now forgotten and I wanted to have my way with her, see what she liked, how she reacted to my cock, see what she liked to do and have done to her. It was time.
I started caressing the side of her body, being careful not to immediately touch her breasts or anywhere sensitive like under her armpits, just keeping to the neutral bits. She took a deep breath and swallowed hard. I keep moving my hands over her body, slowly with just the lightest touch, over her belly, along her sides, up the ribcage towards her arms but never getting there, reversing direction instead. This was only happening for a matter of about half a minute, all the while neither of us spoke. I was about to cup one of her breasts, nipple erect, visible through her nightie when she suddenly promptly rolled over on to her belly, denying me the opportunity. Was she playing hard to get or just disinterested?
Wanting to find out, I slipped my hand under her chest and cupped her left breast. It felt a good size and of a good density. Almost instantly her left elbow came down hard on my forearm. She wasn’t interested.
I rolled away, not sure what to think. I knew that she wasn’t a morning person, so I wasn’t too upset. I was just trying my luck. Two thoughts came to mind. If she wanted to make love with me, then now was the time. But she didn’t, so she didn’t. If she’s not a morning person, then perhaps we have a massive difference between us already. I love mornings. I like the promise of a new day, the calm before the storm and all those other clichés which I believe in. Maybe we’re just not compatible.
Eventually she sat up in bed, lifting her eye mask and gave me a wry smile. I offered her some biscuits and she took one, perhaps just to be polite. I switched my ipod on and soothing, calm music started playing at just the right volume. I lay on my side, still sporting an erection, facing her, while she lay one her back, wearing her black pyjamas outfit, propped up against the headboard. The duvet came up to my waist and covered her knees. We made mindless small talk – the chemistry just wasn’t there any more. Neither of us made mention of my advance on her.
In my experience, if a woman fancied me, she couldn’t help herself but to lay hands on me in some way. It occurred to me that since she had arrived, Musician Gal had not once touched me out of her own free will. I was always the one to take her hand or arm. I always was the one to put an arm around her shoulder the few times when it seemed appropriate to do so. I was the one to initiate kissing or hugging the few times we had done so. Not once had she made any physical act out of free will that indicated that she any kind of desire for me.
We got up and she showered again. I knew that we would be walking again and I was likely to be all sweaty within minutes of walking. She made disapproving noises about my not showering. I was getting to the point where I couldn’t care less what she had to say.
We went for a walk around my town’s farmer’s market and ended up buying a few pieces of ostrich, zebra and kangaroo from my favourite butcher at the market. I was going to prepare this meat for her, come hell or high water! I was still intent on seeing through the day, ever optimistic that whatever was bothering her would either go away or we would talk about it.
Musician Gal seemed mildly pleased by the farmer’s market. We went back to my place, but neither of us were hungry. I suggested that we go for a drive in the countryside, something that she had spoken about several times. It was all part and parcel of her dream of being married and living in the countryside. She didn’t know this part of the world too well, so I expected that she was looking forward to this drive.
We hopped in my red sports car and whizzed through the town’s streets to where the countryside began, where open road was met by clear open spaces, punctuated by proud trees, the occasional grand home or charming cottage. Where life moved at a slower pace and the rest of the world was a bad rumour. This is what I had been looking forward to showing her, expecting her to show a positive change in demeanour.
What did she do? She took out a nail file and started carefully seeing to her nails! I drove past and through the best countryside this part of my county had to offer, while all the time she sat leaning forward, her legs apart, making sure her filing detritus fell into my car, never raising her gaze.
I was now starting to fume a little. We didn’t speak. She looked up as we were entering a historic town near mine. I suggested that we park and go for a walk. She agreed and it wasn’t long before we were walking along old cobbled streets, marvelling at old wonky buildings. Strangely, all the while we were holding hands, but only until she started to complain that I was too hot. We walked through a scenic park with a large pond filled with an assortment of birdlife, managing to make polite small talk. Inside, I was still fuming a little bit. This was starting to feel like a waste of time and money.
We walked back to my car and the sun was on our backs. For some reason only now I asked her if she had ever smoked. She said that she had tried to when she was younger, but didn’t enjoy it. Then she said something which surprised me. She said that she did enjoy an occasional cigar a few times a year. I found the thought and image of her smoking a cigar disgusting. My interest in her was starting to dig its way to Hell.
Musician Gal then said that she was thirsty, so we found a corner shop for her to buy a bottle of water. She opened the water, drank some, looked at me and then drank some more. She didn’t offer me any. I was visibly perspiring. Her thoughtlessness now became selfishness. My level of fuming had now risen to border on anger.
I kept my cool. A very clear picture of what she was really like was starting to emerge. I didn’t like what I was seeing. Not one little bit. Her public persona was all well and fine, but in private I was getting to see what she was really all about: selfish.
Driving back to my place I made up my mind that she wasn’t for me. I was struggling to see anything about her that I liked. Her behaviour the past two days had been unacceptable and at times downright offensive. I no longer had any desire to have sex with her, I found her that repulsive. After today I never wanted to see her again.
I was contemplating asking her to leave when we got back to my place. Before I could say this, Musician Gal said that she was ready to sample my culinary skills. I was now hungry too and was going to make myself food anyway after I had seen her off. I decided to be a gentleman and make her lunch before giving her her marching orders. I got to work making a barbecue while she set about preparing herself a green salad. Eating assorted countryside has never appealed to me and I have no desire in learning how to prepare rabbit food, so I left her to that.
I put some music on my stereo, but after only a few tunes she asked if we could listen to some of her music. The dye was cast and I wasn’t going to make a scene, so I agreed to her request. She connected her phone to a speaker and what she considered music started playing. I didn’t know what it was, but I didn’t like it. I really can’t find the words to describe the shit that came out of my once pure, unadulterated speakers. Would there be an end to the misery of this day – this woeful weekend?
I couldn’t wait for the fire to settle down to glowing charcoal. I wanted this creature out of my home and out of my life as quickly as possible. She had positioned herself on the sofa and was reading a newspaper. She looked quite comfortable and even somewhat serene as she sat there, oblivious to the turmoil that was stretching my insides, unaware of the harsh words being shouted in the cold, dark, quiet corners of my soul. “Get out! Out!” is what I wanted to scream at her, so hard that my throat would hurt.
I think it is testimony to just how English I had become that I managed to restrain myself and not show on the outside what I was feeling inside. Was this a good thing? I’m not convinced. Does a world of peptic ulcers and hernias await?
I cooked the meat to perfection on the barbecue, doing her pieces medium-rare, just how she claimed to prefer it and everything else was ready on the dining room table. We sat down and she seemed interested in which meat was which and I told her what I knew about each type of meat. It didn’t take too long for Musician Gal to complain that her meat was too rare for her liking. So I put her pieces back on the fire, continued eating my meats while she munched away at her rabbit food, heavily vinaigretted pieces of which were falling on to my white tablecloth. A real rabbit would have been a tidier eater.
After a few minutes I went and retrieved her meat, now more medium than mine. She took a dislike to the zebra and ostrich, gave these to me, but she enjoyed the kangaroo. This suited me just fine. Conversation was awkward and hard to come by. The air was filled by the hideous shrieking that her phone was pumping out through my poor, innocent, labouring speaker. I was now gritting my teeth so much that it actually came in useful in chewing my meat.
I decided to go on the offensive and asked her what she thought of my place. I suspected that my place was a disappointment to her. Her demeanour had changed for the negative within minutes of setting foot in my apartment. I needed to know if that was the cause of her change in attitude. She thought about it for a moment and said “Your home doesn’t match your profile.” I took that to mean that she was disappointed by what she saw. Was this the cause of the demise of our nascent relationship? I think so.
It was now late afternoon and Musician Gal said that she needed to be home soon. I was so relieved to hear those words. I wasn’t looking forward to asking her to leave. I’m not very good with those kinds of situations because I hardly ever find myself in them. She collected her belongings and I made sure that she didn’t leave anything behind. I didn’t want her having an excuse to come back.
I carried her heavy backpack as I walked her to the station. Once there, she bought a ticket at a vending machine and the turnstiles were open, so I went on to the platform with her. The next train was due in only two minutes, something I felt thankful for. Since leaving my apartment I had come up with the words that I wanted to use to say a final goodbye to her.
“Tell me, do you think we’re right for each other?” I asked.
“I’m still making up my mind” she replied.
“Well, I have very serious doubts that we are” I said with a stern face, looking deep in to her eyes.
“Why?” she asked.
I quickly elaborated the reasons why, her tactlessness on Saturday about discrimination, being the primary point. I said that her inability to apologize for her offending me was surprising and disappointing. She tried to debate this issue, but I wasn’t interested – the damage was done. I didn’t go in to all the other things that, albeit small, collectively amounted to a very unpleasant picture for me.
Her train arrived, we stopped talking, she got on board, without any kind of kiss or hug or touch of any kind. I stood on the platform, made eye contact with Musician Gal one last time, waved politely and turned to walk away, not being bothered with waiting for the train to leave. I literally turned my back on her, a sense of relief pervading my being.
When I got home there was a text message from her waiting on my phone.
“Thanks for a lovely weekend, was really good to spend time with you. Perhaps I don’t like to get too close because I got hurt, that isn’t your problem, it’s mine. And apologies, I didn’t mean to offend x”
Ten minutes later another message arrived:
“Oh and thanks for being a total gentleman, you are a rare breed. X”
I have not heard from her since. I did think about writing her an email explaining my view on matters, but thought better of it. It might have provided her with a sense of closure, but would most likely have resulted in a bitter email debate. I have no desire to contact her ever again. It seemed to me that she projected a brilliant disguise for her true self, but could only maintain the pretence for so long until her true colours seeped out.
Lessons learnt: 1) Get a woman to my place (or hers) as soon as possible to see them in a more natural environment, away from the public dating persona that we all have. 2) Not everybody is looking for love.
Bruce Springsteen – Brilliant Disguise