July 24, 2011 § 6 Comments
To my mind there was a split second.
I fancy he was having the same thought, there again, perhaps not?
The thought – mine, and most probably that of every other plankton on the planet who happ’d to find herself in the same situation – and more than likely his thought too (though men’s minds work in curious and unfathomable ways so who knows?) – went something like this: Here we are in the snow, just back from a merry evening, in this ideal situation, we are both free and open to suggestion, not positively unattractive, and have been thrown together by force of circumstance when, crucially, we were Least Expecting It, so, hey – surely! – why not?
Perhaps because it is just too pat.
Perhaps because it is too soon.
Perhaps he’s not the kind to take advantage of a situation – a gentleman, indeed, though I dislike that term which has come to be a bit prissy (I hate prissy as much as I hate chippy) – it reminds me of tea cups and combs in breast pockets.
And, face it, perhaps he just doesn’t fancy me. (All too possible, alas.)
Perhaps, also, I don’t quite fancy him enough for him to be the first new man I sleep with in nearly twenty years. (Like losing one’s virginity all over again, one hopes that that candidate is going to be the right person, especially as I got it so wrong the first time, managing as a clueless teenager to score two wrong men simultaneously). I probably don’t quite fancy him enough partly because he’s quite old – mid-fifties – and I am not quite there yet with my readjustments. (Last time I fancied someone enough to sleep with them was in my late twenties and he was quite a lot younger and coruscatingly beautiful. I am moving on, but am still only at late 40s/early 50s; not quite ready to take on mid-fifties plus, though working on it, working on it, I promise). Also not sure I fancy him because although it’s been some time since she died, he’s still in awe of his wife and while of course I want him to be in awe of his wife for ever because if he wasn’t then he’d be a resounding shit, nonetheless there’s in awe and there’s in awe, and it’s hard to fancy a man who will invariably make comparisons and for all my qualities find me wanting – not as intelligent, not as talented, not as special, not as beautiful, not as thin, not the mother of his children. Not dead.
As I say, he lent forward to kiss me.
There was the split second of thought, whichever thought it happened to be.
Then his face that had been booring into mine, eyes and all, veered suddenly, like a car, onto the verge that was my cheek, and then my other cheek.
We went to our separate rooms.
As I say, I was Least Expecting It and, still, It didn’t happen.
[More of what happened next, tomorrow].