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One of the very unfortunate side-effects of having lived with somebody who thought it was fine to lie and cheat his way through 11 years with me, is the sad (I feel sad about it anyway) response I give when presented with new propositions. I react quite badly, I'm negative and see all the problems. I was never like that before, I suppose it'll take time for my self-righting mechanism to fully kick in. I don't mean to be like this. However, the cheating took it's toll, and when you've been on the wrong end of emotional abuse (and that's exactly what cheating is, as well as taking the piss), you tend to only expect more. Your opinion of the human race doesn't go up, it goes down. Your opinion of the world goes down. Your opinion of yourself goes down.

I now question everything, and assume the worst.

I assume people only want to use me for something. I have no reason to believe otherwise.

I think it's time to lower the portcullis and raise the drawbridge. And possibly fill the moat with man eating alligators as an extra measure. I don't want people to be with me when I am not myself. Especially new people. Or the ones understand what's happened, for the most part.

If you are a man, with a proposition for me, treat me with kid gloves. Make me feel loved and wanted, and most of all secure.

Meanwhile, I have my cats, and my new sofa, which is where I sleep most easily these days.

I had a grand afternoon with Chris yesterday, I went on his boat, which is moored in Broxbourne now. Followed by an extremely loooooooong lunch and cheese n biskwits by the roaring open fire. Absolutely splendid.

And there's still only one person in the whole world who thinks I'm quiet and don't converse enough.

Jan. 13th, 2018

Although reasonably mild for he time of year, it's still too cold for me. I don't think I was ever intended to live in this country! I reviewed the back garden, from the relative safety of the bedroom window, and decided the weeds can just do their worst, no way am I getting out there yet! And of course, from one storey up, you can't see how much they've grown since November!

I am trying to get back to the Doc about my arm, but I'm having to wait over 2 weeks for an appointment! Until then, I'll just have to live with limited movement, and pain. Rod is healing really well, his op seems to have worked, and he was on good form last night, which was great.

We talked of retirement. I enjoy my job (although NOT the commute), and I don't have a retirement plan. I don't know what I want to do, or where, other than not wanting to be in this cold country. I'm not sure how beneficial a plan would be, I've ended up unmarried and unloved at 51, and I am wary of making plans now. Other than holidays of course. My trips have been my salvation. I've been chatting to Michael in Bangkok, and it seems increasingly likely that I'll do 7-10 days there in November, meeting up with Nix n Tiff of course.

I'm about to mini-gym and this afternoon, I'll be flogging my wares on Ebay. And scoping a few things out ;)
Potentially............we'll see what tomorrow brings me.....

So busy at work today that I simply didn't get time to call the doc for my x-ray results. Collar bone/arm still really hurts and it hasn't gone down at all. On the plus side, my knees do feel a bit better.

Back at the gym yesterday, albeit scaled down due to the above. Still, we made the effort and it was cold dark and miserable!

Hoping to start decorating the pink room at the weekend. And load some more Ebays.

Rod's surgery done, he was substantially more lively than post-pneumonia a few years ago, so I was pleased to see that.

Tomorrow I am meeting with an "influencer", a travel lifestyle blogger with a gazillion followers, that are so fashionable these days. I'm looking forward to it, something different. And keen to see how he pitches us. This old dog can always learn new tricks.

I bumped into hairy mary, looking her mongy self, at the station, complete with benny hat and anorak. She couldn't look me in the eye, and when I said a hearty hello, she said umm umm umm and scuttled off. Lots of luggage, perhaps going to see yet another "photographer".

Had a rather splendid working lunch today, with 4 fabulous colleagues. No wine, just water, but amazing conversations flowing and ideas and jokes, some appropriate, some not, bouncing around. And I bumped into another old fave on my stroll to the tube. I think I should network more. It's enjoyable if you choose wisely. Unlike Caesar, I am happy to surround myself with the lean and hungry men. It keeps me on my toes. I dislike complacency.

Oprah for Prez? Why not, can't be any worse than Trump. Great speech. Their time isn't up yet. But it's nigh. Very nigh.

So I am booked for a week poshing it up in a lovely all-inclusive place in Marrakech with Donna in May, and another week, somewhat more, shall we say, cosy, with Steph in Corfu the month after. Then Nix pings me last night and sez South East Asia in November. Why not, the world is my lobster - if I can afford it.

I am assisting Chris a tad, with the coming out, so to speak, of his good lady. For my part, I think it's the duty of the old guard to see in the new. Although far from done in that lifestyle, for various reasons, it has taken a back seat. Although in other ways, my hand is still in *snigger*.

Still haven't bothered with dating sites. I am being contacted by men, some of the really rather attractive, in the 30-40 range, which is too young for me really.

In other news, there may be other news. Something rather unexpected came up today.

Oh No!

I have become addicted to loungewear. Deliciously soft, snuggly loungewear. Today, madame is sporting a pale grey chenille oversized top (prezzie from Nix), paired with fleecy heart pyjama bottoms and pink boucle socks. Madame doesn't have the slightest intention of going anywhere, she's already been out for breakfast, and is now very cosy, thank you!

I have been saying, all week, that I detest the windy, damp n dark weather we've been having, and if only it were crisp, bright and sunny, I'd go out for a good walk. Well, it is crisp, bright and sunny, we went to Wetherspoons in the car, and now it's all I can do to not head for the sofa. I am lazy and complacent today!

Oh dear.

Oh well.

Yesterday was great. Rod had offered to take me to Mum's as he was collecting a bike a few minute's drive from her. So he pitched up, late, as always, but presenting me with a rather fabulous vintage emerald cut stone ring. No idea what the stone is, but Kate put her jeweller's eye in, and it is hallmarked, and I utterly love it! It's SO me!

Parents are fine, still issues with Mum's prosthetic though. 15 months now! Dad is prevailing upon higher powers, which cannot be mentioned here.

And down to see Kate, on splendid form, as always. Now, it's probably very sanctimonious to judge other people's children, but behold, David! Only son of Kate. 6ft 2, blond, terribly good looking, 2nd year of Uni, staying on for his Masters. Very sporty. Superb manners, funny, cultivated, urbane, helpful, considerate and everything you could possibly want your son to be! We should all be proud of our children, but if Carlsberg made sons......

Now for my magnificent parsimony!

Other than breakfast, today at Spoons, 2 days none, and 3 days £3.74 for an egg n bacon brioche with filter coffee a la Pret, I have survived on under £5. I am extremely pleased with this! I raided rotten corner at the beginning of the week, and brought multiple items at 90-95% off. And I've ploughed my way through them, mostly under 50p each, some under 20p, and even had guests for dinner. And I have to say, I've eaten very well indeed. Starters and mains most days, and enough to snack on as well. Plus I still have 2 meals left.

I need to up my game with Ebaying, pffffft.

Sloth

Not a word I would usually associate with myself. But for the last 3 days, the housework has remained undone, shopping unshopped, and I have mostly been cocooned at home, cosy n warm.

So last night was New Years Eve, usually a big party date for me. I had an invite for a quiet one at Den n Erica's and a 5* hotel booked in London, but no actual plans, so I cancelled it. Debs dropped round before starting work earlier on in the evening, when she left, I settled down with a bottle of red and the TV.

At 11 Rod turned up unannounced, with booze and party food. He insisted e dress up, so we did, and moments before midnight, a knock on the door - Debbie again! So I spent my NY quite unexpectedly in the company of two wonderful people. We toasted in the New Year with Jools Holland, Debs went back to work, and we stayed up a couple of hours munching and quaffing.

I am really quite touched. I hadn't expected anything at all.

Nix sent me a text at midnight Oz time, wishing me contentment for 2018. I in turn wish it on to everybody else.

2017

Wasn't overly kind to me, or many of my friends.

Sat here with an arm that feels like it's falling off, a semi healed calf and feeling very tired. A stream of physical problems, all small, but very niggly, have plagued me this year. Ironically, I was doing really well on the new gym routine until mid year.

I am currently not smoking full time. I say this as I still want to, and still feel addicted. But I am trying to stay off the cigs.

The biggest change has been Rod, whom I asked to leave back in May/June. Absolutely heartbreaking of course, but there's only so much lying and cheating you can be expected to put up with. He's still very disrespectful towards women, and is unable to treat anybody with the appreciation they deserve, but we are currently getting on well, which is nice. I appreciate him a lot more. But I have had my heart broken. It takes it's toll.

As a result, the house is looking the best it has in years, and that's something I will continue to beaver away with in 2018. I feel so much more relaxed when there's nice space to be in.

For myself, I would like a year free of drama and injury. Throw in some weight loss. Time with friends. time in the sun and some fun.

Happy New Year xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

And Other Stories

I am back in England, still tired n grumpy, and totes unimpressed with the rain and cold. However, very impressed with Chris, the house looks great and the cats are happy and well fed, so couldn't have asked for more. He's a star!

I am noting here what else I did in Oz, mainly for my own memories, so it may look less like a blog than it should. Not that I care, if you're reading, you can put up with whatever I choose to write!

So, Paul flew me back from Adelaide gratis, which I was very chuffed with. Nix n Tiff were there to meet me off the plane, and we drove into Coburg, which is a kinda trendy part of Melbourne. Had a wee walk, and then they took my drive-in virginity. I loved it! Camping chairs outside, with pre-ordered BBQ food, along with a couple of other friends and their dogs. We watched The Last Jedi. Great fun! It's a shame the weather here is too dodgy for drive-ins!

Nix and I went to Laverton Market. I thought I hadn't heard of it, but when we got there, I realised we'd been there before, and Rod had had a mantrum! It's pretty big, inside and out, both new and old goods, and some bizarre people!

Footscray for Dim Sum, twice in fact. THey call it Yum Cha, I don't know why. Footscray is a very mixed vibe, mixed nationality place, lots of Chinese, Vietnamesea nd Ethiopian people and shops. I liked it.

I took a day out to visit OzCuz Emily, who lives in Kynetonnow . So I went into Southern cross super-earlyw ith Nix, we had breakfast and she put me on the train. Emily met me at the station with baby Angus, and we had a coffee in town before heading out to Bendigo to visit the Edith Head exhibition at the art gallery there. The exhibition was amazing, I am so in love with her work. Lunch at a nearby Italian restaurant and a walk in the park. The baby was gorgeous and incredibly well behaved. So a lovely day, with a lovely gal. And the only member of the Kelson clan who bothered to contact me during my stay.


Absolutely loved Christmas at The Night Markets9 Victoria Markets in Melbourne, but at night). A plethora of arts n crafts and just wonderful things to see and buy. And I did buy, we all did (Paul and Sean came with us). The food offerings were amazing too, like London street foodweco. u ldn't decide, and so ended up in Chinatown having a full banquet, which was bloody amazing. ended up with a stroll around the CBD looking at the Christmas lights.

South Melbourne market is also worth a mention, a cross between Borough Market (for the food) plus clothes and local stuff. Looks grim from the outside, but a very pleasant surprise when you go in.

Last day was a visit to Milk The Cow, a cheese restaurant, and Brunetti's a well known and fabulous cake shop in Carlton. Both utterly delicious, and we had a free show - an arrested shoplifter kicking off for over half an hour, hahaha!

In between Nix and I managed a LOT of shopping, all over the place!

All in all, a marvellous trip. I loved everything, and did loads. The weather wasn't as kind as it could've been, that's my only complaint. I was horribly sad when Nix left the airport. I don't know when I'll see her and Tiff again, maybe we up in Asia sometime next year. I hope something can be worked out. Paul I'll see here in June, which is lovely.

Back to normaility

*dramatic sigh*

Crimbo

A game of two halves as they say. Christmas Eve was all about the social. We had a giddying number of lesbians in da house, 2 straight men and me. Oh and 3 cats, 3 dogs and a baby. Tons to eat and drink, however, my personal fave was Tiff's rather amazing trifle. Lots of thoughtful gifts exchanged, games played, chats had and merriment all round.

Today, Christmas Day, somewhat different. Tiff went off to work, Nix, self n Sean lazed at home, before we went to visit Shirley in her care home, complete with dinner, presents and Ollie, her Corgi. I was pretty amazed at how great the home was, and glad she remembered me :)

So I survived waking up alone on xmas day and survived no cuddles. Bouyed up hugely by the sheer power of the love of friends. Including Rod, who messaged me at midnight on xmas eve.

Tomorrow is my last full day, and we have lots planned already.

At some point I'll write up the rest of this trip!

Merry Christmas everybody x x x

48 Hours Melbourne

I arrived at the Pullman at 3, Rod a couple of hours later. The necessary civilities done, we headed out to Carlton for our pre-booked meal at Pertutti. It was average, with a shared calamari salad to start - absolutely huge, more than a main, but the calamari pieces were too big. I went for the salmon main, again a large portion, but dry he went for the spaghetti marinara, average. A mixed plate of desserts to share, average again. Bottle of red $30, which is acceptable. Not an exciting meal, but as a plus, a shop I really needed to visit was coincidentally on he same street.

We woke up too late for breakfast, after me having been up at 5.30 trying to silence the humming mini bar.

Instead of hitting charity shop after charity shop as he would usually insist on, we visited some of Melbourne's many hidden gems. It's a city with a huge amount to offer visitors. Including a $5 pizza pub lunch, absolute bargain, especially if you only get one.

Having walked quite a lot, and with my calf by then singing to me loudly and producing a limp, he insisted we cab back to the hotel to save me more pain.

Instead of scoffing himself silly and drinking all he could neck in the hotel's exec lounge, as has previously been the case, we had a couple of drinks and some canapes before heading out again for a delicious meal at a trendy waterfront restaurant, before bar hopping several of Melbourne's roof terrace bars. During which, I showed him yesterday's blog. Instead of insisting that his years of lying, cheating, breaking my heart and eventually giving me STDs was all my fault for drinking, smoking and being overweight, he accepted responsibility for his own behaviour and apologised. Janice, who suffered the same treatment as me, and didn't drink or smoke or have the temerity to be plump, would have been glad.

He usually disappears in the middle of the night, always on the look out for something more exciting or to feed his FOMO, but this time, stayed with me, which was lovely.

Last morning, we made breakfast and had some sun time at the hotel's pool. I was pleased to finally get in some rays and swim time!

We exchanged Christmas gifts and sat in the beautiful park for an hour or so, and that was that. Friends who were concerned that we'd run off and get married, fear not, it didn't happen.

But he is capable of being a loving, generous, thoughtful and appreciative partner, when he wants to.

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maitressep
Call me Madam

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