So I moved to another City to embark on a new adventure that will take my mind off the crazy past of mine. A past that I do no longer regret or reminisce upon, because it has happened - I can't change it, and I am quite grateful for it because amongst the quite absurd times, there have been some brilliant times. Times that have made me who I am today, and times that make for a great story/blog.
One thing I have learned, and have somehow managed to do, as you can perhaps tell by reading this blog - is not take it too seriously. Learn to laugh. Learn to love, yourself.
I started working for a new company two months ago and I was introduced to a gentleman, a bit older than myself. He was handsome and tall and wore nice shirts. I said to myself, 'No Chelsea, don't start, you want to be you, you want to be single, and you are not to get involved with someone you know nothing about just because he has nice shirts!'
One lunch time, he sat next to me and asked how I was getting on with the new role. The fact he came up to me and initiated conversation when the only stimulant involved was coffee made my mind start ticking about what it would be like to be with him. Crazy, I know, but I also know that I am not the only one. The Ch sound of his name made my name and his compliment eachother.
Then came the Facebook friend request and the drunken messaging commencement on a Friday evening. He was at a stag do and I was out in a bar near where he lived. Please bare in mind I did not stalk him to find out where he lived, I am bad, but not that bad. He'd previously told me where he resided in a conversation about how well I knew the City: not very well at all, which he so supportively reminded me of later on during our fugacious acquaintance.
Red flag (1) - I asked what he was getting up to for his friends stag do. His response: 'we are at a strip club now, I can't stand them, looking at poor excuses for women makes my skin crawl!' First of all, yes you do like strip clubs you MAN and second of all, strippers are poor excuses for women? How very misogynistic. I think they are more woman than some , with their voluptuary assets and ability to shake it. Perhaps he thought I'd agree, I wish I disagreed a bit more, instead I just pretended I didn't read that part.
In one of his messages, he did suggest that I come and watch him play football one weekend. Now, I'm not going to pull a red flag here because it was nice to chat to a guy who was so passionate about something other than himself or say...pot. But let me tell you now- I cannot tolerate football. And this isn't a queue for some feminist rant or to complain about their pay rates. My name is Chelsea for Petes sake, believe me I have tried, but it just doesn't interest me. I thought I best put it out there early on so he could decipher whether he wanted to carry on chatting to a girl who hated football so much that she refused to speak to any bloke that would call her 'Arsenal' or 'Man U' for a barrel of laughs. ' Unfortunately, I'm not into football but if the sun is out I'll be happy to take a stroll down some time.' Keep it cash, keep it cash.
Eventually, in amongst are to'in and fro'ing of Facebook frolicks, I was asked out for a drink. My mind ignored the fact that he hadn't been able to make me do a trusty lol yet and instead focused more on the fact I was being asked out for a drink, in a new city with a guy a bit older than me took over. And I said yes, without hesitation. I traveled across the daunting city to meet him after his football match. I stood at the bar he recommended for fifteen minutes with two pints of cider, remaining chirpy and positive after receiving a text that he was running late and finishing his pint with the lads. Gentleman.
He arrived and I found us a seat, and we spoke about him for two hours, and me for none. He told me everything about his ex girlfriend, (red flag x 3), where they had been, why they split up, how they met, how long they had been together. He also spoke a LOT about football. My mind wondered occasionally back to film I had recently watched the Jack Nicholson in. But still, I remained assured that this could be something, this could be it! Silly aren't I.
The night became hazy after we polished off our numberless cider and headed to a cocktail bar, bad idea. I woke up the next day with a sore head and even worse, him sound asleep next to me. Now I know, nothing happened. I mean, yeah, we kissed because my lipstick was now more his, and we must have kissed because as I got up to find something to wear that wasn't last nights clothes, he grabbed my arm to pull me back down and left a nice wet alcoholic breathed lipstick stained smooch on my lips that were glued together with sheer awkwardness. Sounds like a new shade.
I made us both tea but I couldn't finish mine. Perhaps it was the fragility of my stomach after the previous nights binge. Or maybe it was because I couldn't stomach any more talk about his ex-missus or the fact he moved on to ask me if I'd ever been in love before. A question that bewilders my mind so much that I become agitated and nauseous. I shrugged and asked 'Are we really talking about this right now?' Like there was a possibility we could revisit the conversation in the future.
Luckily, and unsurprisingly , he had to leave swiftly for training, of the football kind, so he didn't stick around too long that morning. He asked if I would like to come and watch him play. The first time I have ever been grateful for a hangover.
Work on the Monday wasn't as awkward as I thought it would be, we said good morning in a professional manner and exchanged 'are we cool?' glances across the office. Something felt terribly unsettling about the weekends events, but again, my inner old romantic tried to fight its way through telling me 'this could be it, this could be it, give it some time.' It even went as far as thinking I could be the new Bridget Jones and that an office romance could be the best thing for me.
So for a couple of weeks, I tried it.
It was more like a really shit version of Bridget Jones. As the days went by it just got more awkward. He wouldn't catch my eye at the right time, instead I'd look up and seek his as I was picking the winter infused dry skin off my left nostril.
Not only this, the cold weather meant that I didn't come into work all dazzling in my short skirt or sexy office dress, it was far too cold for that. So two pairs of leggings and an oversized charity shop cardigan later, Mark Darcy wouldn't look twice at this scruffy cow.
I don't wear heels, my legs are too lanky and I resemble an intoxicated bambi when I have ever attempted the devils footwear. I wear the same old pumps every day, one of them coloured in with a black sharpie because I dropped the tippex pen on them. Classy. So when I caught him as analysing the crap out of the new starter as she walked by; the Romanian beauty with her daring inched heels, perfectly plucked brows and more hair than a horses tail, I'd just end up feeling a bit shit.
One time, I thought I'd try and entice him with a cheeky bend over motion as I filled up my water bottle at the water dispenser (to be quite honest you don't really have to bend down, it's easily accessible at arms length but what the hell.) However, the water bottle didn't seem to quite fit underneath the nozzle, too busy focusing on my stance, I didn't realise how much water went everywhere. Everywhere. Instead of turning around to those who may have witnessed my utter error, I just got up and walked away.
He later on confronted me about this event, and I went red faced, denying all knowledge.
Red flag x 1 - Perhaps I should have called it a day here, when the in the office flirting was chaotic, lifeless and difficult. But noooo, inner old romance wanted me to have a boyfriendddd.
All in all, Bridget Jones, Smidget Shmones. Surprisingly, I was asked out on another date. But, I say date. He actually text saying 'I'm pretty tired tonight, shall I just come round yours and we can chill and watch a film?' CHILL!? WATCH A FILM?! What are we married? No, I want dates, lots of dates, preferably ones where you turn up on time and I don't have to pay for our cider! (red flag x 1)
I persuaded him that we should go out for some Pizza, I knew a restaurant near where I live, (being very aware of his middle class affirmation (I know red flag!) I ensured that it was well researched beforehand. And it was lovely, the food, the drinks, the restaurant. The two hours I spent with him talking more about his football and his ex? Not so lovely. I felt like saying 'If you're ex is so great why don't you just marry her,' but instead, I smiled and nodded and fed his already large ego with more then I'd eaten pizza.
We came back to mine again, snuggled on the sofa like couples do, and he kissed me and said he 'REALLY' liked me. 'You don't even know me,' I stated between kisses, to which he replied 'Well let me get to know you better upstairs' (red flag x 1 for added sleaziness.)
NO-said logical me, No no no this cant happen. You don't even like the guy that much, he is obsessed with himself, football and his ex, Which is enough to nip this in the bud right now. I complained I was tired and putting myself to bed. He followed and stripped down to nothing but his ego, my shoulder could not have been colder, I reached for the light switch and mumbled something about work in the morning (conveniently I was working overtime) and I was wide awake until I heard him sleeping.
When he left the next day, I kissed him on the cheek and told him I'd text him that evening. I did. I said I had moved up here to get away from complications and didn't want to start something that could potentially lead to more.
Now call me vague, but I meant that to mean more ... complications. Mr EGO, on the other hand took it to mean something completely different. His response? 'Hmm, sad news. You're right it could definitely lead to more, but if you're uncomfortable with it I understand. You've just moved to a big city and everything's new so I get that. Don't worry about it Chels, I'm a big boy and I'll get over it, it's a shame as I thought it could have been something really good.'
So in two weeks I got to know quite a lot about this chap. I managed to make him REALLY like me by not saying much at all. I managed to start something and end something in a very short space of time, realising that I let it go on for longer than it should have. BUT, for me, it is a record,I normally hold on to things and people so tight trying to kid myself that it is real and worth it, that it's going to make everything that has gone on before worth while. And that's not a valid reason for getting to know someone, to 'help you forget' or 'move on'. You should get to know someone because you want to, now, in this present moment.
Another life lesson in the crazy mixed up world of relationships, if you don't feel it from the start, then you probably wont ever feel it.
Another life lesson - You are not and never will be Bridget Jones.