Cuts and Bruises

I had never been one of those girls who believed in soul mates, true love and all that soppy nonsense and I was never really bothered about marriage or finding ‘The One.’  That was until a couple of years ago when the most bizarre thing happened to me… I mean, you watch all of these romantic comedies and you read all of these romance novels and you just assume that you will find your perfect match through fate or when you least expect it however for me, I don’t believe it was fate and was I expecting this? Not in the slightest.

It all started in my last year of University, I was in a close-knit group of friends and the majority of them were in relationships, it never really bothered me despite the fact I wanted to vomit in their faces a lot of the time because they were so cringe worthy but if they were happy, I was happy I guess. They were always nagging at me, asking me why I wasn’t interested in finding a boyfriend and they never said it but you could tell they thought I was lonely and I honestly didn’t feel like I was so my reaction was always a grunt or my classic eye roll which made them well aware that I just wanted them to be quiet.

My hauntingly loud alarm was going off at such a painful hour in the morning but I had to be awake and I had to make myself go for a run otherwise I was going to look like a sack of potatoes during the summer. I woke up to rub my eyes and noticed a giant cut on my index finger which looked like it had been bleeding for quite some time. I touched it but it stung like crazy so I got up and ran it under cold water. My mind was boggled as I tried to work out how on Earth I could have managed to cut my finger so badly in my sleep. I had never been a sleepwalker so it was truly beyond me how this cut had appeared on my finger. I put a plaster over it and continued with my day, not really thinking anything of it. A couple of weeks passed and I was washing up in my flats kitchen when a sudden pain stabbed the back of my leg, I flinched and looked down to see blood coming through my white jeans. I panicked and shouted for help, realising my efforts were pointless as I was the only person around. I ran to my bathroom, pulled my jeans off to find a giant gash in the back of my leg, I didn’t even think about the mysterious cut on my finger at first because I was in so much shock. How could this possibly have happened when all I was doing was washing up my dishes?! I sat down to watch TV and tried not to think about what had just happened.

It was the summer holidays and the girls and I were on our way to the airport for a week in Spain. I was excited because it was the first time in months that we had been together without any of the boys and it was going to be great getting away for a while. I was sat in-between Carla and Isabel in the backseat and we were chatting about a new lipstick that Carla had bought that morning when suddenly, my head jerked back and they both screamed. My head began to ache. Everything went fuzzy and I couldn’t hear a thing. I came back around quite quickly and once I did, all the girls were asking me if I was ok. I had no idea what had just happened but all I knew was that I had a giant bruise all around my right eye and I looked like I had just been beaten up by Mike Tyson. None of the girls understood and we were all so confused so I decided to tell them about the other mysterious injuries that had been happening over the past few months. They all told me I should see a doctor and I knew I had to talk to someone because it was as if someone had a voodoo doll of me and every time I did something or said something they didn’t agree with, I got a hit!

“It can wait until after Spain” I said. And they made sure I was alright and told me they would keep an eye on me. In all honesty I was just pissed off that I had an ugly black eye for the duration of my holiday. I wished that I had a bag of frozen peas to hold to my eye but I had to deal with the throbbing, be a grown up and get on the plane.

We arrived at the hotel quite early the next day and I just wanted to lay down in the dark for a while whilst the others went in the pool, I dragged my luggage through the lobby and bumped into quite a tall man who was looking extremely rough. His skin was pale, his lips looked like they needed a whole tub of Vaseline on them and strangest of all, he had an ugly black eye… An ugly right black eye. I apologised for bumping into him and he just nodded at me. I continued to walk past him, pulling my suitcase across the floor but as I walked away, I turned around to look at him again. He was wearing a white t-shirt with some bright orange swimming trunks. I looked down to see what shoes he was sporting but something grabbed my attention on his leg. He had a fairly big cut there and it looked identical to the mysterious one on mine which appeared when I was washing up. “I’m just tired” I laughed to myself and walked up to my hotel room.

***

I had been in Spain for 2 days and I had already managed to get myself punched in the eye for trying to protect my friend in a bar. It wasn’t going well and I wasn’t going to meet a pretty girl with a black eye which was swollen to the size of my face but there wasn’t much I could do about it. It was early morning on my 3rd day in this beautiful country and I decided to go for a swim in the sun to cool myself down. I dived in and began swimming lengths, as I almost reached my 10th length I noticed drops of blooding coming from me. I panicked and swam quickly to the edge to get out of the pool. Little cuts were appearing all over my legs and feet and tiny amounts of blood were coming out of them. I was baffled and went to the showers to try and stop the bleeding. I thought I may have cut myself on something in the pool but I couldn’t think of anything it could have been.

***

One of my favourite things about hotels had always been the complimentary shampoo, conditioner, soap and razor and I almost always used them. As I arrived at my room I decided to take a shower to freshen myself up. I grabbed the razor and stupidly started shaving my legs thinking it would just be like my Venus razor at home but no, not even slightly, it was a little piece of plastic with a couple of metal blades at the end and my legs were covered in drops of blood. Using that razor was a bad idea and it also made me reluctant to use the shampoo.

I had a power nap and made my way downstairs to grab some lunch with the girls. I was wearing my favourite Levi shorts with a bright floral top from Hollister and I felt so fresh and summery despite the fact I had little plasters all over my legs from where I had embarrassingly cut myself shaving. I came to the lift and waited for about 30 seconds and once it reached my floor I was surprised to see the man from the lobby in there too. We awkwardly stood there for 13 floors as the instrumental traditional lift music played in the background. I tried to catch another glimpse of the cut on his leg and as I did so, I noticed he had several plasters on his legs in the EXACT same places as mine. I stared at his legs with an expression of pure shock and confusion on my face and he looked at me like I was crazy.

“Can I help you love?” He said. His voice was so deep and husky and I didn’t even know it was possible to find a voice attractive but it was. It really was. I stared at him, in silence. His eyes, oh his eyes. They were bright blue and I could feel myself staring into them like a complete idiot. I was really making a fool out of myself here, I had to say something.

“Ok. What the hell?” I shouted at him. Oh good one, shout at a stranger after staring at him for about a minute and a half. Smooth. He stopped the elevator and looked at me with his arms crossed. I panicked. I showed him the scar on my leg and the plasters on my legs and explained the weird cut on my finger and asked him whether he thought it was strange that we had the exact same black eye. His response? – “Ok. What the hell?!”

Before I know it, we’re both sat down on the floor of the lift discussing our cuts and bruises and everything else. I knew the girls would be wondering where I had got to but this man intrigued me. He told me that he was a sous chef and that he had cut his finger a few weeks ago on a knife and it had bled a lot. He then explained that he played football on the weekends and a player on the opposite team had kicked him in the back of the leg with his blade boots on. I asked him how he got his black eye and it turns out he got punched for trying to break up a fight in a bar.

“So if my injuries have appeared on you, are your injuries appearing on me? What did you do to your legs this morning?”  He asked me with a curious yet handsome look in his eyes.

I blushed and felt my face turning a lovely shade of red. I stuttered and told him that I had used a cheap hotel razor. Despite this situation being undoubtedly unusual, he smiled and laughed at me. I didn’t know what to do, what to say or what to think. We spoke for what felt like hours, we had so much in common and the more we spoke, the more attracted to him I was. His name was Mitchell Jones and he was a sous chef in a fancy restaurant in London.

***

This situation was so mind blowing and I think it could only take a genius to work out what on earth was going on. But this girl was so beautiful even with a black and blue eye. Her name was Charlotte Carter and she was a History student at Bath University.  I decided that if my cuts were her cuts, the only way we could find out is if we saw each-other get injured. I didn’t want any serious pain because I didn’t want to hurt her so I told her to watch her forearm. I pursed my lips around my forearm and sucked, as if I was giving myself a hickey. Weird but I knew it left a bruise, it didn’t hurt and it was the only way we could find out after all.

***

I watched him give himself a love bite, kind of wishing his arm was my lips. He shot me a glare which I knew straight away meant he wanted me to keep watching my fore arm. And to my shock and horror, a red patch was gradually appearing in the exact spot of my arm that Mitchell was sucking on his. He stopped and stared at my arm, then stared at me, then stared at his arm.

“They’re exactly the f***king same.” He whispered.

This was so strange and I’d never seen anything like it, it wasn’t in any films I’d watched nor in any books I had read. We arranged to meet for dinner that evening after exchanging digits and hotel room numbers. I walked away from the lift, I couldn’t help but smile. Even though this was all very odd, I had butterflies in my stomach and I had never felt like this before. I had heard my friends speak of ‘butterflies’ but I never cared about experiencing them. But they were lovely and they made me feel all warm inside. I met with the girls and understandably, they were angry at me for being so late but once I had explained what had happened they all seemed so excited. I found it funny how they were more intrigued that I had met a boy I quite liked rather than our cuts and bruises appearing at the same time. Typical girls for you, we’re all hopeless romantics deep down.

Isabel helped me get ready for my date in my room and she helped calm my nerves. I had never been on a date before and especially in a situation like this, it was quite a big moment for me.

“You look great” She shouted out of the door as I was halfway down the hallway. I giggled and waited by the lift. The door pinged open and Mitchell was stood there with a beautiful bouquet of flowers which had blatantly been purchased in the hotel shop but it’s the thought that counts! We sat down for dinner and chatted all night long about everything, trying not to mention the cuts and bruises until towards the end of our date.  Mitchell announced that he had been to speak to someone about our situation but wouldn’t tell me who because he was ‘embarrassed.’ He went silent for a couple of seconds before telling me that they had basically said there was no other explanation than fate. I almost choked on my wine.

“Why are you laughing Charlotte?”
“I laugh in the face of fate! It doesn’t exist!” I said rather loudly. I could see him blushing and felt guilty for shouting that out in the middle of a restaurant. I apologised and we continued talking about what this mystery person had told Mitchell.

We got along like a house on fire and the more the night progressed, the more I was falling for him and believing that maybe fate does exist. Mitchell was looking at my eyes and I felt insecure mainly because of my black eye but I remembered he had one too so I decided that two could play at this game and began looking into his eyes. My heart was beating so fast and I really wanted to kiss this man right now. I couldn’t read the signs so I continued looking at him, smiling as I felt my heart beat almost too fast for my body. He leaned over the table, placed his warm hand on my face, pulled me closer and began to kiss me. I felt sparks fly, I felt the butterflies in my stomach crash into each-other and I felt fireworks coming out of my head. It felt so right and this was the moment when I realised fate does exist and there is a soul mate out there for everyone whether you believe it or not. One kiss can change your mind about anything. I wanted this man to be mine.

Months passed and Mitchell and I were so close, I had graduated from University and was living with him in London. We honestly were made for each other and I never thought I’d be saying that I was pleased to have cuts and bruises all over my body because it led me to the most amazing husband in the world and I wouldn’t want matching cuts with anyone else in the world.  

 

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A New Love

A sudden rush of excitement,
Pierces through me like a thin thread,
I see his name on my phones screen,
I rush to answer it quickly,

Even the sound of his soft voice,
Put a silly smile on my face,
I could see my mum laugh at me,
And my cheeks begin to turn pink,

All of this was so new to me,
Boys and the stomach butterflies,
It was strange how happy I was,
But also how sad I was too,

I had let somebody in,
I had let my walls and guard down,
But I know he’ll treat me nicely,
So all I can do now is smile.

True Love?

Beside the chapel they will stand,
Smiling happily hand in hand.
Knowing that they have found the one,
Their lives have only just begun.

Soaking up the rays of the sun,
He stares at her whilst she’s still young.
“I will grow old with you my dear,
And I’ll remind you every year.”

Now time was passing oh so fast,
Their wedding was now in the past.
She longed to have children to love,
But children… He would not talk of.

They argued every single night,
She thought he did it out of spite.
But really he was just afraid,
If kids were born – their love would fade.

But he eventually gave in,
And she gave birth to Katherine.
The baby made them bond much more,
Their love was stronger than before.

Things did get rough along the way,
But it was true love, every day.

Change

As I sat in the sun, embracing the rays as they gently kissed the surface of my skin, I longingly stared at the sky, it was so blue, a beautiful shade of blue with not a cloud in sight. I laid back in an old deck chair of ours whilst my music flooded my ears, right through me making me feel like nothing or nobody was around, I knew they were though and I knew it was probably best if I acknowledged them but I felt so relaxed and lost in the moment that I quite frankly wasn’t bothered if anyone considered me rude or antisocial. I felt happy, genuinely happy and the existence of other people wasn’t going to get me down, not today. Not ever again.

I wasn’t the best at dealing with social situations, in fact, I was the worst. I would panic at the smallest of things for example if my mum left me at a till in the supermarket to get some milk when it was nearly our turn to pay or if I had to order food in a restaurant. My hands would clam up, I would shake my legs, my voice would keep crackling and sweat would drip from my forehead. I was indescribably pathetic so at each and every moment that I felt relaxed and happy, I had to take advantage of it and make the very most of it.

I had been an awkward person for as long as I could remember, my siblings were forever making fun of me for it but I just didn’t let it bother me. It wasn’t until high school where it got really bad, I couldn’t put my hand up in class because I feared of answering questions wrong, I refused to eat school dinners to avoid conversation with dinner ladies who are usually friendly, I was just an embarrassment, when people began to notice this, they didn’t even pause for a second, I got called so many names such as a ‘pathetic bitch’ that’s the one that stuck with me the longest and made me realise I had to change my ways. After so many people called me names and talked about me behind my back, it was difficult to make friends and I became even more awkward. I couldn’t look anyone in the eye, I couldn’t stand still if someone was talking to me, I would mumble and it made me feel like an imbecile. For a few years I just coped with it but I just remember one day as I was trying to get to sleep, I was feeling something strange, it wasn’t sadness though, it felt worse than that. I let my mind wonder about that until I eventually drifted off but I decided to ask my mum about it the next day. I remember the exact look she gave me and the exact words that left her mouth… ‘You are lonely sweetheart’ as soon as she said that, I couldn’t stop thinking and I just knew I had to get out there and make a friend. And it could have been anyone.

I remember it so clearly because it is one of the most significant days of my life, my mum had asked me to go to the supermarket for a few groceries, I was nervous but I felt a rush of determination, determination to change and to be confident.  I was walking down the road and there was a boy sat on a bench, he looked a similar age to me and straight away I could see that something was wrong with him, he had a strange look on his face, as if something bad had happened seconds ago. I panicked but my instinct was to talk to him, console him. I wiped my clammy hands down my legs and slowly approached the bench where the boy was sitting. I sat down next to him and stared at his face, remembering this moment makes me feel so embarrassed, it was like I had never seen a human before, I just stared at him, observing everything about him, I didn’t even know whether he had noticed me but still, I continued to stare.

“Can I help you?” He asked rather quietly.

I recall thinking ‘oh Christ’, I had no idea what to reply and it felt like hours that I sat there thinking about what to say but eventually the words crawled out of my mouth with an embarrassing little stutter.

“Hi, I’m Emily, you look upset”

Had I said the right thing? Did I sound like a fool? Oh my god he was going to stand up and walk away and my confidence was going to go back to zero. I just stared at him, I am laughing thinking about this, I must have looked so silly. I thought I had gone above my standards by talking to someone highly attractive when I have issues talking to any old person. But he was gorgeous, anyone would think so. I felt so stupid because he was now staring at me, no words leaving his mouth. It was an awkward situation but it didn’t feel awkward and that confused me. After a good 5 minutes he finally replied to me.

“Hi Emily, I’m Dan, and nope that’s just my face”

The way he said that made me smile, and I let out a little giggle. He smiled back at me and I could feel my cheeks turning pink, I was blushing like a little bitch. He asked me to walk with him, I completely forgot about what I was initially out for and followed him, we walked for hours but neither of us really saying a word. He led me up to a giant hill and he sat down, so I did the same. He then began to talk, he talked, and talked, and talked. I was amazed, happy, relieved all at once, only god knows what my facial expression must have been when he finished speaking. He was exactly like me, literally the male version of me and I knew in that moment that we would get along perfectly.

Dan and I met almost every day that week, and the week after that and every other week until now, in fact, he’s sat right beside me as I write this, reminiscing how we met and how perfectly we clicked is making us both smile like idiots. I had finally met someone who understood how I had felt all of those years because he had been through the same and we wanted to help each other so very badly and we knew that we could. We shared a whole summer together, going to restaurants and ordering food, it took a while but we did it, we ran errands for our parents and visited museums and art galleries and by the end of summer we felt like normal people. We hadn’t made any other friends but it didn’t feel like we needed to, we had each other and we knew if it came to a time where we had to interact with other people, there would be no problem. He really is the most amazing friend I have ever had.

I never really knew whether Dan had feelings for me, I knew I was always attracted to him but never really expected anything from it because we were friends. But one day, we decided to visit this fancy restaurant, we were going a little bit out of our comfort zone but still, we would be fine. We sat down and were having a laugh, talking about our days and as we were waiting to order our food, Dan stood up in front of a full restaurant and denied his love for me. It was such an amazing moment because it was a giant step for him to talk publicly like that and especially to admit something as big as love. I couldn’t wipe the smile off my face, it was the single most adorable thing anyone had ever done for me, ever. And ever will do. I will never forget it, it was so lovely and heartfelt and I have never felt so special. He’s cringing whilst we reminisce this but he knows it’s in my top five memories that we’ve shared.

He was perfect, my family loved him, I loved him and he had made me a better person, I was no longer a caterpillar waiting to leave its cocoon, I was a butterfly ready to explore the world and meet amazing people and so was Dan, we both applied for university and we attend the same one, we have been together almost 6 years now, time really flies when you meet the perfect person. We have an amazing group of friends who know all about us both and we’ve been told so many times how confident, loud and easy to get along with we are. You would never expect that we struggled to order food in a restaurant before we met each other.

Dan and I’s story proves that once you meet the right person, your life can change for the best and you will become a different person, everyone is so proud of me and I am proud of myself. I would never survive in the world if I was still as awkward as I was in high school, I can only tolerate certain people and when I feel happy, I really take it in because I know I truly deserve it, everyone deserves to be happy, you just have to fight for it but I promise you it is more than worth it. 

What do you think of Valentine’s Day?

The official definition of Valentine is ‘a person to whom one sends such a card or whom one asks to be one’s sweetheart’ and the term Valentine’s Day is known as ‘a day for the exchange of tokens of affection.’  But has this changed over the years? I am a teenage girl and for the past 2 years I have been in a relationship for this occasion but now I’m single and I found it surprising yet interesting to see how drastically my opinion on this day changed in quite a short space of time therefore I was inspired to write the following article about this day.

Valentine’s Day is an annual celebration which falls on the 14th day of the month. It is usually celebrated by giving flowers, chocolate and cards those you love. We do these things in honour of Saint Valentine. Nowadays, many people don’t really think about this. However, it is said that Valentine was a priest during the third century Rome. At this time, there was an Emperor named Claudius II who claimed that married soldiers lacked strength other than single soldiers who were more capable of their occupation therefore he outlawed marriage for young men aspiring to become soldiers so he could have a stronger army. Supposedly, Valentine decided against this as he thought it was unfair and chose to marry young couples in secret. That is one story, there is also a legend that has been told claiming that Valentine was a man in prison who fell in love with his jailor’s daughter and before he was killed he sent the first ‘Valentine’ to himself when he wrote the woman a letter signing it with ‘Your Valentine’ this is why people are lead to believe why these words are still used on cards in the 21st century.

I decided to carry out a bit of my own research and discover what people I know think about this day. I asked the following 4 people what their true opinion on Valentine’s Day was:

14 year old female: ‘I think Valentine’s Day is just a pointless holiday where card companies sell cards to send to people purely to gain more money however, if you love someone that much you should celebrate it every day of the year not just one day. If Valentine’s Day is going to exist it should be about people who like someone and aren’t confident enough to tell them and of course, Mcdonalds get a lot of money because it’s where all the single people go to drown their sorrows.’ (I do apologise for my little sisters embarrassing love for food.)

17 year old male: ‘I think it’s a good day if you are one of those people who enjoys all that cute relationship stuff, it means you can spend the day treating your girlfriend like a princess but when people who are single go on about it, it turns into a sort of joke, they’ll laugh about being single and spending it with their cat etc when deep down everyone wants someone to spend the day with no matter what they say.’

Married man: ‘A commercial gimmick for card companies to make loads of money, nobody really buys into it. It’s expensive and everyone goes out so the service in restaurants and hotels is poor.’

Married woman: ‘It’s alright for a bit of fun when you’re a teenager or in a new relationship otherwise it’s a commercial opportunity for greed, it’s not even just cards, everything in shops is Valentine’s this, Valentine’s that.’

I found this intriguing because I suppose my opinion is all of those bonded together. When I was in a relationship, I saw Valentine’s day as another day however, spending it with my boyfriend did feel special and seeing someone’s face light up when you give them a gift is always a lovely feeling so I like it for that however now that I’m single, I dread walking down the streets seeing young couples holding hands because it makes me feel lonely and it is such a mood kill to feel that way! I do agree about the businesses getting money out of people and I personally believe it is more of a day you put thought into gifts for example photo frames, handwritten letters and so on. But there are some delightful things you can purchase for the ones you love nowadays and sometimes the money is worth it if you truly love them.

I can’t help but remember my primary school days, being young and not really caring, we used to send our ‘crushes’ cards signed with a question mark, I think it would be lovely if Valentine’s Day was dedicated to people who never had the confidence to tell someone how they felt or if someone could never pluck up the courage to ask them out. The fact that couples are now pressured into purchasing gifts/cards for their significant other can be somewhat stressful but ‘it’s the thought that counts’

What are your views on Valentine’s Day?

Image

Laundrette Girl

She came in every Saturday morning. Looking remarkable each time, without fail. Her blonde, wavy hair gently fell just below her shoulders, so perfect. I could never take my eyes off her. The ringlets in her hair were incredible, the only time I had seen hair like that were on the women in 70’s Hollywood movies. Her eyes stood out for miles. A deep, blue colour, similar to the shade of the ocean and the sky, blended together. I had never been lucky enough to get lost in them but I longed to because every single time she walked into the laundrette, everything else in the room went out of focus and all I could think about was her. She always looked so defined, as if she made the effort to look remarkable all the time, she fascinated me, in so many ways. Her lips, always such a rosy red, plump and soft. I paid attention to the tiniest of details, I just didn’t know her name yet. I worked in the launderette every weekend and she would come in every Saturday and she was the only thing that kept me sane for the whole day. I would hear the little bell ring each week at 10:30am as she strutted through the glass door in her kitten heels and tiny floral dress, fitting her petite figure perfectly. I would rush to hold the door open for her every time so she didn’t have to struggle with her basket through the door and as embarrassing as it is to admit this, I wanted her to think I was a gentleman. She seemed so classy, too classy for me that’s for sure. After all, I was only a boy from London working in a launderette for a living. I doubt she had ever even looked at me twice but I really wish that she would.

It was a sunny afternoon with a slight breeze and I was sat at the desk finishing my breakfast, watching the time and preparing myself to hold the door open for her. It was 10:28am so I headed over to the door and stood by it, glancing out of the glass door, I spotted her come around the corner of the street. That beautiful hair glistening in the sunlight and those icy blue eyes looking straight towards where I was currently standing. I suddenly felt a flutter of a thousand butterflies swarm around my stomach. It was a pleasant feeling but still made me feel nervous at the least. She was like my drug each week. I waited and waited until I saw her, getting more and more worked up each second of the day but as soon as she was next to me, everything suddenly changed and it felt like we were the only two people in the universe let alone in the city. She was approaching the door fairly quickly now and I could feel a big smile begin to form on my face. She winked at me as she stepped through the door. I’m glad the sound of the bell ringing covered up the sound of my heart beating. I pretended like that wink meant nothing however, it was as if the thoughts in my mind were jumping up and down on a trampoline and all crashing into each other. It was just a wink for Gods sake, I had a tendency to over think and over analyse absolutely everything and it needed to stop. I slapped my wrist. She turned around. I panicked. What if she thought I was a psycho?
“Is this washing machine out of order?” She asked. I stuttered, a lot. But eventually the words crawled out of my mouth one by one…
“Yes, sorry about that, I’ll help you get your garments into the next machine.”  I sighed with relief inside and tried not to show this on the outside to prevent myself from getting embarrassed. She smiled beautifully and thanked me. Her teeth were so straight and so white, she had a perfect smile and that made her even more angelic. I began to help her with her basket of clothes and she thanked me again, she was so polite.

I decided that if I was ever going to talk to her, now would be the best time. I took a seat on the bench next to her, not even taking it into account that she may have found it slightly strange but I couldn’t help it. In the heat of the moment, I felt it was the right thing to do, taking an opportunity you felt was necessary. And it was necessary; the outcome of me finding the confidence to go and sit by this woman was overwhelming for me. I had lost control and found myself staring right at her, she looked to her side and I just managed disguise the fact that seconds ago, I was admiring her. To my surprise, she struck up a conversation, it was blatant small talk for a good 10 minutes but it was better than nothing. Usually when she was waiting for her laundry, she would make her way over to a small vintage tearoom a couple of blocks down, I knew this because she always left the paper coffee cup with their logo on in the launderettes bin. However, today she sat down beside me on the bench and we talked for hours on end about every little thing. She was a beautiful woman with a beautiful outlook on life and I could already feel myself getting attached to her. She had so much to say, I was almost speechless. Throughout our conversation I heard the washing machine beep a number of times but this didn’t stop her from talking to me. She continued and I certainly wasn’t complaining. Hours passed and the sky was getting darker.
“I better get going” she giggled. I told her it was lovely talking to her.
“You too sweetie” she said as she smiled that beautiful smile of hers. I went to hold the door open and all of a sudden, she kissed me on the lips, so gently but I was lost for words, I couldn’t explain my feelings. I honestly thought my heart was about to make its way out of my mouth.
“I’ll see you soon” she whispered, followed by her signature wink.

All I could do at this moment in time was nod and smile, I felt so shy and I could feel my cheeks gradually turning bright pink. I thought I was dreaming. Since that moment, I haven’t been able to function or concentrate on anything, I couldn’t comprehend what had happened, it was completely out of the blue and I was asking myself so many questions; did she like me? Would I see her again? Should I ask her out? It was driving me crazy! But I knew patience was what I needed most in this situation. I was looking forward to seeing her again, wondering if I should ask her to dinner, I was nervous, I looked at my watch, it was 10:27am, 3 minutes to go until she walks through this door, I checked my watch again, 10:28am. How can only a minute have passed since I last checked? Time was going so slowly as I waited for her by the door. A whole hour had passed now and this was unusual for her. I sighed, giving up and went to sit down. The weather outside was sunny but this definitely didn’t anticipate my mood, I felt glum. And this made everything else seem glum too. Maybe she’s hanging her clothes out on the line, I thought. I didn’t even know why I felt so down, I just really wanted to see her.

The next morning on my way to the launderette  I slowed down as I approached the little vintage tearoom in the hope that she would be sat inside. And there she was. But she wasn’t alone. I watched her as she leaned in to a handsome looking man and kissed him gently on the lips, just as she had done with me only a week ago. I realised she had given me false hope and I swear in that moment, my heart shattered into millions of tiny pieces.

And I still didn’t know her name.