A rather frisky evening spent in text chats with two of my current beaus, Ewan and Julius, as well as a potential lover – the art historian, Tomas, who told me last night that he was in a playful mood having just finished working on an academic nude that evening. I invited him to play with me, letting him know that I was reclining on my bed sans culotte, as it were. He found it a welcome bit of information and offered to stroke my inner thigh. I found the exchange incredibly tantalising, as it escalated, with both of us employing bolder and more salacious language. It culminated with an arrangement to consummate our flirtation some time next week.
Ewan meanwhile, reiterated his desire to indulge in an orgy with me, detailing the extent of his proclivities with increasing fervour. When he sent me a graphic image of his own state of arousal, asking for one from me in return, I declined, pleading the inferiority of my phone camera and the poor lighting at that late hour as my excuse. The following morning, quite coincidentally Douglas made contact on his way abroad via the airport and I sounded him out on his keenness to join Ewan and me at some stage in the near future, whether with or without his current lover Carrie. He was delighted and offered to arrange something with us on his return.
It comes as no surprise now that Julius and I are engaged in text chats or emails on a daily basis. That evening we filled our diaries with future dates; we might meet as often as twice over an 8 or 9 day period, leading up to our holiday together at the end of next month. Our exchanges were more decorous – we regard each other with greater warmth and affection and a large degree of respect. There was nothing prurient and the terms we used rang with sincerity.
We still have yet to find a name for me to address him by as his real name happens to be identical to the one used by someone who had been very close to me from my past. I had asked him to think up something he might be comfortable for me to use with him but we were nowhere near figuring this out.
He has dates with some of his current lovers but I don’t ask him for details, feeling more or less confident now that he still regards me as his favourite, just as he is mine.
The above image taken from http://littlepennydreadful.tumblr.com/post/102159517051/rivesveronique-margaret-watkins-academic-nude
The 97% match is an art historian, (edit – let’s call him Tomas) head of his department at a post-graduate art school in London. We recognised each other at once outside the art centre at the Barbican – my choice of venue, even before I’d discovered his professional interest. In a darkened studio our hands brushed against each other’s until at one of the larger rooms, behind a pillar, we embraced. We went down a level for cocktails where he told me of his complicated love life involving one long term partner and other tempestuous lovers. He walked me to my station later that evening and we enjoyed another kiss at the top of the stairs. We exchanged phone numbers and he sent me a sketch by Antoine Watteau the following day – a libertine painter who painted love and had no time to spend on actual love-making – my new love interest tells me. The refined banter between us hinted occasionally at libidinous themes and he invited me to the hunterian museum as a precursor to indulgence of a more sensuous nature. How could a girl resist? I assented, of course.
The following evening I had a date with Julius who continues to delight me. He had indicated that some of his friends might be at the Crossbones vigil we were attending and I’d been slightly apprehensive. As it happened, there was no one there who knew him very well and so the evening had been all right. When the vigil was over we went for a drink at a pub before coming back to mine. In my bed, after dallying about downstairs baptising the sofa in the living room, we came upstairs, and then I remembered and we booked the tickets to go on holiday together for the end of next month. We marvelled at our confidence about the strength of our relationship, to take such a bold step other lovers might consider foolhardy since it was only our sixth date, but we were both certain that it was unlikely we might ever fall out.
I spent the entire night cradled in his arms – both amazed the next morning that we suffered no ill effect from this unfamiliar sleeping position. We re-affirmed our adoration of each other, and were careful and also careless about describing our emotions. The carelessness sprang more from spontaneity and the care we took in our choice of words stemmed from a desire not to alarm the other. We understood where we stood with each other and I can enjoy this phase of my life being the apple of my lover’s eye, until the end of the year at least!
Ewan makes a date finally, having received the parenting calendar for the new school year. We pencil in an evening in a fortnight’s time as he is given to understand that my own diary was being rapidly filled. I am jealous of the time I can call my own after being pressed by the new men in my life to meet them. Goran still sends me messages and I no longer feel the need to meet him. What a difference a few months apart has made and I am regaining my self-esteem, helped tremendously by the ardour of Julius’ passion.
I’m dating someone older than Cosmo! This morning he told me in bed that he could see himself falling in love with me. My toes curl with pleasure. I’m sure I wore a silly smile all day after that. This is the self-same Julius who had said just last week that I shouldn’t hold my breath if I was waiting for him to whisper those three little words. He didn’t say them exactly but he had held me tightly and said that he was very, very fond of me.
There’s no denying it – we have fallen all over ourselves in love. It’s quite a bizarre thing – to be non-monogamous and in love. He has a date with another lover this weekend and I won’t see him again until next Tuesday when we are to meet at a venue where some of his old friends will also be present. I’m aware that this is taking our very new relationship to the next step in as few as 5 dates! And I still feel pretty much over the moon that he has given away how he feels about me. In a fit of infatuation I called him my darling, and invited him to go on holiday with me … and meet my sister! He said yes but would have to check his diary. I suspect that he probably has pre-arranged appointments over that period.
My friend Jan told me that it was best not to over-analyse.
In any event, my dating app is still full of overtures and invites from rather nice looking men. I chat to a couple of them and arrange to meet with one this coming Monday afternoon. Meanwhile Goran tells me that his wife is still playing open and close over their marriage and it makes it difficult for him to commit to seeing me with any regularity. Julius had asked and I confessed to him that Goran had spent the night previously. It hasn’t made a difference and he is as attentive and thoughtful as ever. My cup runneth over!
There was a time when I was not in love –
and thrilled quite carelessly with every man:
Delighting in all the pleasure they gave
between pauses, sighs, and whispers of passion
with anticipation in taxicabs
in corridors of underground stations
at street corners and pavements ere parting
in dark passages off the beaten track,
in the comfort of old film theatres,
along the Thames or in a forest glade.
Since you appeared I’ve been in disarray
from that night when we lingered and languored;
yours the kisses I now ache for, and count
the spans of time until we meet again.
The 3rd date
An afternoon discovering treasures at the Soane Museum – and I was punctual for our meeting this time. There wasn’t a queue and very few visitors. So we could linger and take our time over the exhibits which interested us – the Rake’s progress, the Canalettos, an exhibition of Shakespeare, this being the fourth centenary of his death. John Soane himself had been an ardent fan of the Bard and so there was plenty in the museum reflecting this. The highlight of the tour was the basement, but alas the sarcophagus was being cleaned and shrouded in ply. I promised to return next month when it should be displayed again – he tells me it is his favourite piece. I was hugely taken with the skylights and staircases. The enthusiasm shown by some of the volunteers eager to share their knowledge of the pieces was infectious and added to the quiet splendour of the place.
Later we walked around Lincoln’s Inn fields – a typical garden square with mature London plains and maples, pausing for a drink at the cafe as it was a hot summer’s day. We sat in the shade and eventually walked down to the India Club at the Strand for dinner and a beer before heading on to the theatre – an Alan Ayckbourn farce which didn’t disappoint although I thought it was rather dated. I didn’t recognise any of the actors but he had seen three of them on TV before.
We took the tube back to his and there I discovered that he too has a collection – mainly of fantasy and science fiction reading material, some DVDs, CDs and pictures of ethereal as well as corporeal female forms, some of whom were in stylistic pose. We talked frankly again (he was willing to satisfy my curiosity over his two other current lovers) and even at this second coupling we have become more familiar with each other’s bodies. He put on some music and we kissed and enjoyed intimate moments to Leonard Cohen, Pete Atkin and even Serge Gainsbourg. I laughed at the cheesiness of engaging in intimacy to the sexy French crooner. When we did fall asleep, it must have been four in the morning.
During coffee in bed at around ten he told me how much he enjoyed seeing me at ease in his bed, waking up with me and that I was the first person he had ever met who liked morning sex. It was a very indulgent Sunday morning, both of us sharing a reluctance to do anything apart from kissing and touching each other.
I may have hinted to him in a brief moment of abandon that I could see myself falling in love quite easily with him – he has been such an intuitive and tender lover. His response, in as gentle a manner as possible was that I may have a long wait before I heard him say those three little words. It sounds like a challenge to me! And yet, … and yet. Whilst I am excited at this I am also trepidatious about our possible mismatch – his advanced years, intellect and experience compared to my relative youth and tendency to the frivolous. He allows me to tease him – for now because he appears enamoured of me. But when my novelty value wears off … and
when he finds someone shiny to adore
will my heart survive that break once more?