You Got Mail!

Yes it really is as simple as that. Three hours after reactivating my profile and I’m already treading in the shark infested waters, with an online inbox bulging with smiles, winks and messages. I’m the fresh meat on the block and it doesn’t take long for them to sniff me out…

So here I am 5 months on and right back where I started, full circle, chatting to anonymous people and trying to stay positive, bubbly and chatty just like my profile says (insert smiley face here). But this time I’ve got my armour on so I’ve already politely declined every man who has an ex-wife or kids… hey I’m not putting my hand in that fire again.

This time it’s different and yes maybe this old school, freeform romantic is finally shaping up a fussy ‘list’ after all?

meg

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Ride ’em Joan

I’m sick of being miserable, sick of being sad, sick of waiting patiently with hope in my heart for someone who doesn’t come, sick of holding myself in like an overfilled cup of water just in case a certain someone wakes up and smells the coffee.

Guess what? It’s me who needs to smell the beans. But you knew that all along didn’t you? It’s me who needs to wake up. Me who needs to be harsh. Me who needs a reality check. He’s not coming. Not today. Not tomorrow. Not next week. Not next month. I’ve waited a long time to hear his footstep or the sound of his voice, but it never comes, instead I get empty text promises and lingering silences. The reality is love conquers all and the check is there’s no tick mark for that on my form. It hurts, but I gotta toughen up right? I said back in January that I’d given up, that I wouldn’t look for love. I said I would just be me. Well I’ve been me for 4 months now and I find me is a state of extreme loneliness and longing. Sadness and solitude that I can’t bear.

Driving home tonight and crying over the steering wheel again, I made a decision. I’m not a victim to love, I’m fed up of being an emotional cripple, I will take back my control and come out fighting.  Miss Kitty is coming back! And this time I’m not accepting anything except the very best offer I can get from another person. No half way houses, no baggage (or at least lite baggage only), no skeleton exes in the cupboard, no pathetic excuses  or abuse or drunken twisted 2am blackmail, just someone honest, passionate and pure. Who actually wants to be with me instead of running away all the time like the last two. Someone who wants to have fun and date me (pretty simple you’d think huh? I’m not exactly the elephant woman, last time I looked). No more tortured agony, I mean if it’s like this at the start,what would it be like if we ever actually got off the ground?

So tonight I re-activated my online profile and I’m drinking red wine and putting on my armour (just round my heart you understand) ready to go back into the fray and believe me I need tough skin. Online you get the oldies, the lechees, the insincere, the insane, the day-dreamers and everything in between. It certainly ain’t easy, it takes balls and bravery something my last two guys didn’t have that’s for sure.

But I’m sick of being passive and being walked all over. Sick of falling hard and being left on the concrete. The bitch is back! Well she’s not really back, because I’m just learning, but from now on I will learn to be tougher and harder and not take this shit anymore. There is a FRAGILE sticker on my heart and I’m not gonna let anyone close enough to see it anymore unless they jump through hoops first.

As A.A. Milne once said “You can’t stay in your corner of the Forest waiting for others to come to you. You have to go to them sometimes.” So here goes. Can you see me going? Charging forth into battle like Joan of Arc, dressed in glistening chainmail on a white horse called Faith, with a banner embroidered with the words Love streaming behind me in the wind and in my hand I carry a silver shield held high which reads Hope.

I know it’s good isn’t it? But erm by the way…. I can’t ride a horse, so let’s make it a miniature pony and I don’t have any chainmail so instead I’ll just wear my favourite pretty retro pink leopard print dress with matching pink wedges (which means I’ll have to ride side saddle of course) and I don’t actually have a banner just a hankie and will a compact do for the shield maybe? OK. Well off I go… of course I’ll keep you posted ‘cos you’ll be with me every gallop of the way, well it’s probably more of a trot really eh? But in for a penny in for a pound – let battle begin!

joan

The truth serum

There’s no two ways about it online dating is an odd concept. Talking to someone online and trying to condense your life values into sound bites makes for an odd face-to-face meeting when it finally happens.

For starters you have a kind of pre-conceived false intimacy that you know who you are going to meet, which of course is rubbish and this soon becomes apparent when you turn up for the first date and shake their hand, because the real living breathing organism is always light years from their cyber self and they even look different to the picture in your head or on their profile.

But the common thread for me is the weird truth-telling that goes on, I think it’s something to do with the awkward first chat. It seems to prompt a fight, flight or truth response in men and so they choose to get loose of tongue. While you are both in the cold, death grip of nerves and before the alcohol hits the spot and tames the hormones, grown men blurt out the damndest things!

Point in case my very first online date. I was so naive about the whole thing, we got on so well I thought it was a done deal, I skipped all the way to the pub convinced that this was the guy, badda-bing, first time lucky – just like that! We’d been texting (yes texting not messaging) and he had been very flirty, dirty and over familiar with me. It was all sexual tension and teasing and I had a picture of him as a strong, capable, gorgeous, Alpha male. I turned out he was young, spotty, kinda square and obsessed with drinking and going out and ‘getting trashed’. Oh dear. This was not what I was expecting. But worse still he proceeded to tell me in a half hysterical state that he hated his job as an Optometrist and that when his elderly patients complained of poor sight he dreamt of taking them to a ‘kill room’ and putting them out of their misery. Gee, there’s a conversation stopper. Was he being funny or serious?  Seeing my confused look he explained that most of them had inoperable cataracts and that this was his black humour to get him through the day. Really? Too late mate.

Next up was the mountain climber who ran his own business designing and manufacturing specialist climbing pants in Thailand. He was a good ten years older than his profile picture for starters, optimistically he insisted on meeting in a darkened pub, but then he went on to tell me about his last buying trip in Bangkok which involved taking a prostitute out for a night on the town and then paying her money because he felt bad about not sleeping with her. Ahem, sorry, come again? I’m sure he did.

Then there was the guy who upon my walking through the door announced that he was pleasantly surprised to discover that I actually looked like my picture and was a slim lady after all. He went on to explain that because of his profile picture (which featured him on a boat hauling a catch of crayfish) that he was “a fat bird magnet”, what a nice change he told me earnestly, looking me up and down, not to have to explain that he doesn’t actually have a freezer full of free seafood. Oh bully for you. And finally my pièce de résistance the guy who’s opening one liner was “So how do you feel about a guy with two kids, each from a different mother?”. Funnily enough I haven’t really spent that much time pondering that one…. but oh look I think there goes my bus, bye.

To coin a much used phrase WTF?! Whatever happened to the art of conversation? I don’t want a man to lie to me or hide stuff, absolutely not, but I do appreciate a true gentleman who can charm and perhaps create an air of mystery. What’s wrong with wanting a man who has old fashioned manners in a modern casing? I don’t want to see or hear about your dirty washing, I want you to impress me with your best, pressed, bib and tucker please.

r & d

Hobby horsing around

A weird phenomenon about flying solo in your thirties is that it’s like going back to high school.  Firstly I seem to spend an inordinate amount of time sighing dramatically and mooning over handsome actors in movies (this time minus the posters on my bedroom wall) and optimistically revisiting and studying classic romantic films – are there any clues I may have missed the first time around? Secondly I hang out a lot with my bestie (who is also sans a hubby or a boyfriend) and we spend any spare time in each other’s pockets, so much so that people start thinking she’s my girlfriend and not my plus one. Oh and thirdly I’ve taken up hobbies. Yes it sounds very pre-pubescent.

If the last time you had a hobby was back when you wore long socks and braces and they took the shape of ballet class, guitar lessons, athletics club, brownies/cubs or swim school then you’re in for a shock. The adult version is way more sophisticated. Granted it’s more like a bucket list before coupledom or arthritis sets in (whichever comes first!) but I have taken up in the following order op shop furniture shopping, a bit of DIY dabbling and the odd crafty art thing, running, chutney and jam making, pet therapy, life drawing, a two times crack at rock climbing, archery and some naughty but nice limoncello making!

So yes in a nutshell, I guess I have finally turned into my mother. Except for the gardening, which so far I am resisting, apart from the 3 shrivelled up orchids I foolishly bought. Soon to be added to the wish list are hot yoga, pump, a French language refresher and Vietnamese cooking. Thankfully I haven’t started crocheting or knitting yet but you never know. Of course the thing I haven’t mentioned in my new array of skill sets is also one of my favourite’s and that is blogging and talking to you.

archery

Sugargirls

This is a shout out to all my ladies (D.J. Miss K in da house!), my sisters in arms who step with me shoulder to shoulder along my pathway to… well to whatever lies in store? I salute you and thank each and everyone of you beautiful troopers from the bottom of my misshapen heart.

When the chips are down, when I’m out for the count, when the tears are pouring they step in, unsummoned, with flowers, wine, tissues, chocolate, reassuring nods and unconditional support. I may be unlucky in love and pick the wrong guys but at least I scored the four leaf clover with my girlfriends.

They say you know who your friends are when the shit hits the fan, by God I’ve had so much shit hit the proverbial, my girls all wear jumpsuits and galoshes…pink of course! One particular lady, she knows who she is, is my Gibralta. Always there no matter what. Any time, day or night with a splash of the hard stuff, a warm and ready hug and some sage advice. She has a heart of pure gold and a generous spirit, my Maori-Manchester kaitiaki. I shelter under her strong umbrella, you mess with me you mess with my adopted big sister!

And it wouldn’t be right to give a nod to the sisterhood that props me up and keeps me marching through the daily grind of celibacy without standing to attention for the one who made it all possible. And yes, I know I should have listened from the start… and yes, I know you know best….. and yes, I know you wish you had a fairy wand…. but hey I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t test your limits – you are an inspirational warrior queen and I love you Mum.

As someone who was bullied at school and spent the best part of my teens and twenties trying to recover, I can tell you that the greatest gift actually is true friendship in all its many glorious shades, because even meeting your soul mate is just finding the best friend that you happen to love too.

So ladies… next time, let me toast you all with one for the road and hope like hell the highway has been recently tarmaced!

girls

Love tonic

As I said it has been one of the bleakest weeks in my romantic life, but I have to confess that I discovered someone on Friday who has single handedly reignited my faith in romance.

We’ve had a whirlwind weekend together and I even as I sit here in my kitchen typing and sipping flat champagne he’s here. We’ve had long walks, been to the supermarket, had dinner, had a romantic candlelit bath and even gone to bed together. Hussy that I am. We’ve hardly been apart all weekend long and even my best friend loves him.

He makes me feel good about myself, makes me skip along and do impromptu salsa dancing when I’m out walking the dogs, he makes my spirits soar and he let’s me believe that love is out there again for me.

Have I been too quick to replace my long lost beardie with this smooth skinned, sharp suited charmer? Probably, but then again he is the perfect man, he doesn’t answer back, calls me baby, tells me I’m beautiful and serenades me when I’m down. And I’m not selfish,  I can share…. his name is Michael Bublé and his new album is my iPhone ear candy.

Thanks Michael, I still believe xx

846-02796691

The way you wear your hat

Well I got my answer and a big serve of what I deserve… waiting it seems is a fool’s game. Since I last shared I’ve ridden a rollercoaster only to end up right back where I started. I’ve been treated bad and let down but it’s a familiar road to me now. The ex triumphed in the end. Again.

Romance is dead and even though for a while I was Sleepless in Christchurch, there was no boy meets girl, happily ever after.

I’ve been lying low, re-stitching my seams and wondering what’s the point?  Being honest, being true to your feelings, getting up just to get slapped down again and again. Am I supposed to be learning a lesson? Huh! In which case the lesson can only be never love, never trust, never dare to hope. It’s not worth it for all the pain.

But then tonight I put on some cheesy old school crooners while I had a bath and a good cry and I listened to those golden, heartfelt lyrics from a time when men were men and women were breathless and smitten. It was all so seductive and I realised that I can remember why it’s all worth it. It’s that feeling you get when there’s someone there to share your day with, to kiss, to hug, to hold hands, to share food and laughter, it’s simply to love and be loved. And I may be disappointed and sour right now but there’s a flicker there. You know what? It cheered me up that little optimistic bubble in my stomach.

So I’ll hold my chin up high because at least I tried right? I don’t wake up thinking what if? I stood up, was counted and tried to raise my flag. As the Gershwin song goes “we may never, never meet again on this bumpy road to love, still I’ll always, always keep the memory of…”  in my case the way his hand shook when I held it.

I guess the lesson is you can take the girl out of the romance but you can’t take the romance out of the girl. Peace out x

milkshake