Max and I

A chapter in Amy’s dating diary

Dating Profile of Whimsical Amy

* born on a tropical island and now evolved and much suited to urban living in cooler climes.

* eternal optimist; loves dogs, the arts, music, film, drama and fiction.

* can usually be tempted to try anything once – fermented shark in Iceland is a not to be repeated culinary adventure for instance – although would return to that wild and beautiful island.

* enjoys good conversation, banter and convivial company (who doesn’t?)

Who she’s looking for

He is someone who challenges me cerebrally and is also kind, fun, sincere and adventurous.

edit – would prefer someone who makes an effort on the personal hygiene front; those whose sense of smell is impaired need not apply.

This was my internet dating profile.  I didn’t see the point in beating about the bush with all that winking, waving, poking or liking business so I never bothered with that.  Instead I tended to send the men I liked the look of, a message indicating my interest and wait for a week.  If the feeling was mutual there would be a response.  If not, undaunted, I would try again.  I had been doing this on and off over the last nine months.  Initially of course, when I didn’t get an instant response I paced and chafed restlessly as it were all over the internet, clicking on various other profiles and randomly sending messages to any old dog!  After a few unsuitable dates I gradually learnt the value of patience.  This was what happened when Max replied.  But first a taste of how it started:

Hello

At the risk of appearing forward i thought i’d venture a hello, after all this is a dating website. Shall we embark on a few message exchanges to see whether there might be that je ne sais quoi to continue into real life?

whimsically, Amy 🙂

Hello Amy Whimsical

Thanks for your message and not forward at all emailing, someone has to start the ball rolling so I’m glad you did. Are you shy or brave? Maybe both!

I’m wondering if the edit adding personal hygiene was after an unfortunate date?

What sort of areas do you like to be cerebrally challenged in? I’ve struggled to spell that so hope that doesn’t rule me out, actually I’ve a good mind even if I say so myself 🙂

Max

Hello Max

Thank you for your response 🙂

I like to think that I’m not reluctant to seize a moment but there have been occasions when shyness has overcome me. So yes, a bit of both. What about you?

On the personal hygiene front I blame all this enthusiasm over cycling … don’t get me wrong, i’m all for exercise but it’s not the best mode of transport for a first date unless we’ve both agreed on a cycle ride or you didn’t live in the next county! (I recently got a bike with a shopping basket but am still a little nervous on the road.)

If you can talk intelligibly or have an opinion on some things (which I’m sure with your good mind should be dead easy) I would find you sufficiently interesting – movies, books, news, food, travel, music, animals, the usual stuff people talk about to get to know one another. I love reading and watching films; And you?

So seeing as we’ve started the new year on a reasonably promising footing would you care to pursue me on A******W**@*mail.com ?

Hi AW

Um, I had a date yesterday that’s leading to a second date so it’s best I keep things simple and non-confusing and unfortunately stop pursuing you. But one date is a fragile thing obviously so if it doesn’t lead anywhere is it ok for me to contact you again?

In the meantime, I wish you confidence on the roads. I’ve a basket on my bike too.

Max

ps I’m a bit of both too

Hi Max

I wish you all the best in these affairs of the heart of course although i’m left fairly amazed at your chutzpah in declaring me second fiddle. My pride dictates I respond by telling you where to take your pursuits but I am not that kind of lady obviously <grin>.

In any event, by the time you’ve got your act together I may have moved on. But that’s a risk you have chosen to take and fortune may favour the foolhardy …

so, bonne chance

AW

Hi AW

Not second fiddle, honest – just chronological order and having met one nice person it doesn’t seem right to meet a second nice one at the same time.

So I’ll take that risk and be honourable!

Bonne chance aussi et a bientot peut-etre (and feel free to tell me where to go at that time…:)

Max

honest, honourable and not a europhobe … lo que sea sera 😉

a maidel in waiting, AW

I didn’t hear from Max for about a month over the Christmas break when I busied myself with holidays and visits to family.  And then over the New Year I found a message in my inbox:

Hi AW

So was I foolhardy and lucky or purely honourable and have paid the penalty?

While waiting for the answer, did you know that maidel means girl in yiddish? Is it a co-incidence that’s the second yiddish word you’ve used, to go with chuztpah….

Down with UKIP!

Max

Hear hear (re UKIP)

So what happened Max?

a maidel still waiting

Hello AW

Hmm, what happened? We agreed there was something missing. We didn’t identify what it was that was missing. I could go on but think it better to move fairly swiftly on from these things, not that I’m not thoughtful and don’t overanalyse by nature. Did you read ‘Stella Grey’ in the Guardian on her date (maybe you don’t read the Guardian of course). An excruciating example of over-analysing a date, which we’ve all done, haven’t we?

Have you forgiven me?

Max

Hello Max

Forgive you on condition you’ve come prostrate before me 😉

Yes, I occasionally read the Stella Grey pieces and sometimes thought I’ve been there before too. The latest one of the distance dates that went wrong … sometimes it’s just merciful to end things which are non-starters – the distance for example.

So here we are again

AW 

PS – didn’t I give you my email address before?

Hi AW

I am prone on the ground, typing this out with my nose. 

I don’t understand distance dates for Londoners. Luckily Finchley to Kilburn is not far, though the public transport links are atrocious!  I might have to cycle and we know what you think of that on a first date. On the prostate theme, I could crawl to Finchley or would that be taking it too far? I am quite good at taking an idea and going too far until it is used to death….

How was your day and evening? I ate half a coffee cake that I bought for 4 people to share tomorrow and got ready to interview 5 people tomorrow to take over my own job.

Max

Hi Max

I can tell you’re suitably contrite and fully deserving of forgiveness.  It really may be going a bit too far involving your prostate though …

The day went reasonably quickly – I had to give my 17 year old son a pep talk over the phone this morning re his future, A levels, grindstone, etc.. (he’s living with his dad), and then to work for a few hours in the afternoon, returning to make dinner for the 15 year old who lives with me – I’m looking forward to taking a break next week – flying to Malaysia for Chinese New Year. 

Also ended up eating too much fruit – 

…  Are you leaving your job?  Why? Have you just won the lottery?

AW

Hi AW

I have been worrying about involving my prostate as I do tend to mix the two up and was trying to be very careful. But in worrying I may have brought it to reality.

How much is too much fruit? 

Yes, I’m leaving my job and yes I won £50 million on the lottery. 

Would you like to meet up?

Max

Hi Max

I have a brilliant idea, in the light of your recent change of circumstance (your windfall) –  let’s meet up now; and i was also wondering – would you like me to stroke your prostate?

Fruit – 300g mango, 360g pineapple, 200g blueberries, 1 banana, 2 clementines – in the course of today alone.  Have i overdone my 5 a day?  

I trust reading the first paragraph didn’t result in too much damage, you weren’t drinking a hot drink at the same time were you?

AW

Hi AW

I say yes to your two suggestions and think I’m going to enjoy being a multi-millionaire. I do like trying new things and prostate stroking will be one of those. I hear it’s very pleasurable.

I manage a health and wellbeing project and I say you’ve overdone your 5 a day. Actually I don’t know more about that than anyone else but I’m amazed at your 1kg consumption. Do you like fruit or is there a reason behind so much?

Luckily I don’t do hot drinks so your first paragraph hasn’t done any lasting damage though you’re right to worry and in future I will put down any operational chainsaws and stop cycling before reading any emails from you.

I will try to think of something to shock you but not risk you not replying, a difficult balance to strike and possibly beyond me. I might observe you a little longer to see how shockable you are or maybe you could help me on that score and tell me yourself?

On a serious note I would suggest we do meet soon (to avoid the Stella Grey issue) but it sounds like your sons and trip are ganging up against us?

Max

Dear Max

Now that I have your full attention  (my sneaky little plan the whole time …mwahahaha…) I can begin to draw you into my web, er I mean suggest a rendezvous.  Although you may be right as to circs conspiring against our meeting – I’m going swing dancing tomorrow (only a beginner’s class, you’re welcome to try it if you fancy – or perhaps you’re an expert, it’s only an hour in Brixton and we can chat afterwards or beforehand) as I have an outing with my students (i teach English to young foreign adults) on Friday, going up to my sister’s on Saturday, beekeeping diy on Sunday with packing in between before I’m off on Monday morning.  So Thursday evening is probably the only opportunity we might have to avoid the curse of Stella Grey.

My sons are completely uninterested in my dating exploits and so are unlikely to be a hindrance.  I, unlike your noble self have made a few friends from GS, although no one who thinks they might be my soulmate and vice versa.  I am beginning to think that there’s no such thing and that the website has been highly optimistic in its billing.  I’d be happy to be proven wrong of course.

Then again I may return from Malaysia only to get an email from you saying you’re seriously considering dating someone else and would I mind playing the nth fiddle. hey ho

AW

PS – i am going through a fruit phase.

PPS – shall be watching Wolf Hall at 9 tonight and may not reply until it’s over.

Hello Evil AW

Who is the evilest of us all? Me for the lottery lure or you for the prostate stroking lure? Or do we deserve each other? 

I was going to gloss over the nth fiddle problem hanging like a helium-filled elephant in the room over our Malaysian-trip-delayed-meeting-conversation but you have been forthright and out there as I’m coming to expect and appreciate of you, AW. I’m pleased to say I’m free tomorrow evening and would love to meet up!  I am a terrible dancer. It is my ambition one day to overcome my fear, embarrassment, self-consciousness and lack of natural ability. Tomorrow evening on a first date with a witty woman is not that day. How about we meet after the dance, ideally more in the N direction? Would that work for you? If you’re taking the Northern line home, easiest for me is to meet at Kings Cross but I’m very flexible. 

Enjoy Wolf Hall!

Max

ps  by your sons I meant the time-consuming need for pep talks etc

pps who is your source of information on my GS friend-making failure rate?

Greetings my fiendish friend

Tomorrow evening at 8.30 ish at King’s Cross sounds like a good idea … although (one last plug for swing dancing), we are all beginners at the dance class which starts at 7 and I can promise you that if you could only overcome your inhibitions you would find it hugely fun and highly energetic, besides which you get to dance with upwards of a dozen different women at least in the course of the evening.

Looking forward to the morrow, whether it’s 8.30 or 7

from one despicable AW

PS my mobile no. is 07*** *****6

Hi AW

I am tempted but will stick to KX, thank you though. I have swung dance and I do like it but I would like you to see a slightly better side of me. Are you now tempting me with a dozen women?!?

KX – lets meet in the ticket office area of the mainline station at 8.30. We can text what we’re wearing or something like that tomorrow, unless you’re good at recognising people?

Looking forward to it.

Max

We met and seemed to click, enjoying getting to know each other in a fairly light-hearted manner.  I told him that I was also dating a few people at the same time and he seemed to appreciate my honesty even though I could tell that he was surprised at how openly I admitted to engaging in casual relationships.  He looked quite a bit younger than his 54 years and was suitably fragrant.  We managed to find some common ground – we had both studied and practised law to please our parents before giving it up when we realised we wanted to pursue a different path.  Our awkward relations with our surviving parent, mine still very much with the living, his having passed on a decade previously.  Two hours flew swiftly by and we bade each other good night as we went to catch nearly the last trains.

Hi AW

Good to meet you this evening and I look forward to featuring in the weekend Guardian very soon despite or because of so many denials. You have provided a few firsts for a first date – let me know if you’d like a second on your return.

Max x

Dear Max

I was amused to read that I have given you a taste of firsts on our first date last night. I must admit that I have never discussed some of the things we touched on with anyone else either. 

As to your allusion to the possibility of my being Ms Grey – I am of course a lot younger than her. On the other hand I have been keeping a record of some of my past trysts and your intuition might have picked up on that. 

I have discovered though that my dates tended to feel rather uncomfortable with being so scrutinised. So I have more or less given up on sending them any pieces I might have written post-date as it were. 

AW x 

ah, do send! I’d be fascinated….would I be pleased though? 🙂

Hope your students’ trip went well?

Max x

ps I was purely joking and teasing about you being Ms Grey

Dear Max

We shall have to do something spicier and more adventurous to merit a written record 😎. Suggestions are welcome and considered according to order of risqué-ness.

Trip is not until 2 so am just waiting for the drizzle to clear

AW

Dear AW

Clarification sought – is the order ascending or descending (i.e. more risky considered first or last?)

and you’re right, you are of course much younger and more attractive than Ms Grey as well as being more adventurous 

Suggestion 1 – a Tarts and Vicars’ Party at an old friend’s …  how do you feel about that?

x

Dear M

Well I think Ms Grey is constrained by journalistic decorum

Are you inviting me on a salacious jaunt??

Sent on the hoof

Dear AW

Possibly but she’s laying her soul open in painfully eviscerating rawness. Wouldn’t you be embarrassed by her angst and neediness? She will be publicly revealed in the end…

Any hint of the salacious is just hint here anyway I suspect, very tame in practice, hence my starting point…

Here’s suggestion 2, ramping up slightly. I’ve not done it and you’d have to promise not to see questions in advance:

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/11/fashion/modern-love-to-fall-in-love-with-anyone-do-this.html

Hope drizzling has stopped

x

Dear M

Now that’s a challenge!  I’ve read about it too (the 36 questions to be answered by two strangers who will then fall in love) and wondered myself what it’ll be like if I did them with a total stranger.  let’s try that, although technically we’re not really strangers. I looked at the questions then but don’t remember them now obviously.  When?  If I’m not too exhausted later this evening? Or tomorrow evening? Or when I return?

Sent on the hoof

We agreed to meet up at nine that evening, ostensibly to answer the questions.  We couldn’t agree on the venue – whether to meet in town, nearer to his or my suburb, until eventually he suggested his flat and I agreed.  No doubt it went through our minds whether we might kiss or even go beyond kissing!

The questions provoked a sense of familiarity in our shared discomfort at having to tell each other fairly personal feelings.  We punctuated the list with some experimental kissing and in the end I did go to bed with him but left in the middle of the night to return home.  In bed we talked more about sexual preferences and fetishes and it was as though we were people who had known each other for much longer than we really had!  We did not think that we would see each other again until after my trip ended in two weeks’ time.  I was leaving the day after and had barely begun to pack.

subject:  Suggestion 194

Hello AW

I hope you’re not too tired this morning. I am a bit! Thanks for a good impromptu evening with loads of kisses – in the end – and some more firsts (I’ve never met anyone the night after a first date before;  haven’t used a condom since I can remember so that was interesting as I had been curious if it would still work at all and it did; haven’t exchanged so much personal info by a second date thanks to the 36 questions) even if we didn’t get anywhere near my prostate. Who do I complain to the Guardian about mis-description AW?  

How did you find doing the 36 questions?

Hope you have a good Saturday. Wish me luck with my first dinner party in 10+ years.

Max x

ps

was this what I said I’d google or was it something else?:

Horses chew cud, but don’t have cloven hooves: fail  (this was a reference to Jewish dietary laws, whether horse meat was kosher).

pps no complaints from my neighbours yet (this being a reference to the amount of noise we might have made mid-congress).

Hi Max

tired is a very mild description of how i’m feeling this morning.  still, i’ve managed to walk the dog, get a paper and am now about to make my pre-holiday list.  i’m procrastinating by replying to your email.  and being sedentary is my preferred position after a fun if exhausting previous 24 hours.

what’s the significance of the no. 194?  

re complaints to the graun on the matter of mis-description i’m not sure i can help you – i might be shooting myself in the foot …

i think that we’d shared quite a bit with each other pre-36 Qs – wasn’t it designed as an experiment to see if total strangers would fall in love?  I’m sure the lab rats did not have sex with each other afterwards either – i’m not sure how that might tip the scales either way.   Some answers were fairly forgettable i think but even before them we’d felt a small amount of connectivity which you’d picked up on – relationships with parents, and so on.

Do you think we should continue seeing each other?

AW

Sent from a sedentary position

PS good luck with the dinner party – what are you serving? and who are your guests?

Hi AW

I’d like to meet again and to see what might happen next time and continue our conversations verbal and physical. What do you think? I can tell you’re not a therapist. I’m frequently gently reminded not to use ‘should’ but persist contrarily when I want to break their rules. 

You’ve been very good this morning. I’ve been good too – walked to Kilburn High Road to do food shopping for this evening and got the paper and Ritter Marzipan and about half the food is now cooked so I’ll be able to take a nap soon. The menu is home-made falafel (taught me by the Horn of Africa cooks I worked with) followed by a pastry of my own development – layer of rice, layer of fried onions, layer of mushrooms in cream sauce encased in puff pastry! 

194 signifies that we’ve had lots of suggestions and questions and answers, but you can counter-sue me Ms Barrister as it’s not very literal. You didn’t see my legal owl!

Hope you are upright and your list is going well.

zzzzz

Max x

On Sunday morning I sent him a rather bold text message which read:

Good Morning Max, having a naughty moment pre-rousing remembering your firm hand on my bare bottom.

What followed was a flurry of text exchanges culminating in a date for a midnight tryst.

And what are your proposals for tonight and more firsts?  AW

Actually I’m a simple creature who likes hugs, caresses, strokes and cuddles. And spanking you lightly.

xx spank xx M

I also liked you fully dressed right at the end lying on the bed with your boots and everything else on. Like that but arrive with no knickers? M

Dear M

High heeled knee high lace up boots? sans knickers but with suspenders and stockings?

That sounds good… am off now… see you later, earlier than 10 fine too but I know you’re v busy going away tomorrow, so expect 10pm and if you’re late  you shall be whipped harder.

xx

ps bring any restraints

I got there promptly at 10 as I did not really relish the “harder” part of his threat.  First, he took me to meet his neighbour’s cat – he was cat-sitting over the holidays.  We then went upstairs to his flat where he poured us a drink – amaretto for himself and a glass of red for me.  We chatted for a bit, he had made a list of questions he wanted to ask me further and then, the wine lowering my inhibitions, we engaged in a minor role-play involving more firm hands on bare bottom, further adult play before he took me to his bed for more vigorous exertions.  He showed me the three saws which he had thought better to hide from view on my first visit and the atmosphere lightened as we both giggled at the incongruity.

Again we had another enjoyable romp and I left him at about two in the morning.  Driving back I noticed that it was getting foggy and when I left for the airport later that morning the fog had not quite cleared.

With a distance of several thousand kilometres between us and a time difference of eight hours we continued our emailing and I came to look forward with eager anticipation to his emails.  Some days we might exchange as many as ten, on others, merely two.

We told each other what we were doing but we also discussed what it was about relationships which we found difficult.  He answered my questions with honesty, I tried to do the same but wondered if I was deceiving myself when I said that I was not looking for an exclusive relationship.  Having tried monogamy on two separate occasions which ended with heartbreak I was less trusting of this prescription.  He, on the other hand, was happily enjoying the dating adventure, taking me at my word that he was one of many and that I was not someone who viewed the liaison as anything but a carefree distraction.

Emails while separated by oceans and time differences:

Hello

Welcome to Malaysia! Hope you had a good flight and caught up on sleep, much needed I imagine?

Have just been down to stroke and feed Cassie (the neighbour’s cat) an almost midnight feast. Thought about licking her as might as well after yesterday’s incident and cats like licking but didn’t in the end.

Max x

What a lovely welcome x.  I can’t imagine licking Cassie would have been enjoyable for either of you …  My tongue is trying out my rusty Malay. My ear is getting used to the language and working out vocabulary I’d almost forgotten. 

Had a few short naps on the flight as it was punctuated with announcements, meals and  inflight movies. 

It’s a pleasant 24C this morning but I’m sure the temperature will continue to rise.

Trust you must be asleep by now?  

Sweet dreams

AW x

Sent on the hoof

I was asleep but now awake and pondering life’s profundities….

Some research, but my own suggest everyone is shaving to my amazement and disappointment.

http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/fashion/features/the-politics-of-pubic-hair-why-is-a-generation-choosing-to-go-bare-down-there-8539673.html

I have come across only one in-depth piece of research that measures the extent of pubic-hair removal among women. Conducted last year by Indiana University, which surveyed 2,451 American women, it showed that among the 18-24 age group, two-thirds had totally or partially removed their pubic hair during the past month, and a fifth had been hairless during that entire period. The prevalence fell as the age of the respondents advanced, but still in the 50-plus age group around 10 per cent had engaged in some total removal during the previous month. There is nothing to suggest that figures in Britain are likely to be much different.

Hope your Malay comes back.

M x

Hi Max 

Am fairly recovered now I think from my travel lag. The next few days are going to be a routine of family get togethers involving food and catch up. 

I’m amazed (and relieved) that I feel quite sanguine towards my mother. She looks frail and older and my sisters tell me that she often neglects herself despite having the wherewithal to lead a better life. They urge her to indulge herself but it all falls on deaf ears due to a lifetime of frugality. Let this be a lesson to us all perhaps!!

Internet connection here is hit and miss so am not able to do any Google or wiki searches (blessing this as fewer distractions). But I’ve not been able to read the last link you provided. 

Hope to hear what you’re up to and give my love to Cassie 😊

AW x

Sent on the hoof

Hi AW

Your visit sounds enjoyable. I found as my father got older and more vulnerable, inevitably his power over me reduced and it was easier for me to relax and feel tender towards him. I’ll be like your mother with her neglect unless I change my frugal habits fast 🙂

Where are you in Malaysia and who are you staying with?

Cassie is well and sends her love to you with a special purr and an outstretched paw as she knows you find that cute.

Are you getting ready for celebrations and sheep?

I’m just working, still got an exciting buzz from the success of the last project;  will go to a local community meeting this evening (partly networking as it might lead to paid work, shhh); have a meeting about fruit harvesting today and an office film night tomorrow. Life of Max. 

Max x

ps  my bed is suddenly empty!

Hi Max

I’m staying with my sister and her husband at my aunt’s old house. It’s familiar as I stayed there as a teenager with my aunt and uncle for one  school holiday when my father had his first bypass surgery. 

There are stray cats and dogs in the neighbourhood who compete with the muezzin calls. One must be extremely tired to sleep well at night. But I don’t mind being woken up as I’m on holiday. And the novelty of the smells and sounds I still find quaint. 

Having an all girls’ (was in an all girls’ school here for 8 years) school reunion on Friday, so really looking forward to that.  The last time I met up with them was probably about 8 years ago.

Give Cassie a scratch on her bonce from me for being so cute. And good luck with the networking. 

AW x

PS – on the empty bed front would you consider recruiting a willing bedfellow who might be amenable to a threesome in future? 😉

Sent on the hoof

Hi AW

Were you popular at school and did you keep friends with them over the seas? 

While it goes without saying [ed: why are you saying it then?] that there is a queue of women gagging to go to bed with me and when they see your profile and photo they would be even keener, if that were possible, for you to join us, I cannot quite put my finger on anyone who happens to be available just at this moment. I will keep my eyes and ears open for the opportunity as would like this new experience though I think it may be sensory and pleasing-behaviour and stress overload for me and interesting but not necessarily enjoyable!

Your homework, please, is to write a 300 word mini-essay starting : The various reasons I want to have a threesome that includes a woman are….  

As it’s new year I won’t give you a 24 hour deadline ….by the end of Sunday. You can of course set me an equivalent challenge.

Max x

Sent sitting in front of my computer after a bath and evening out with the local Town Team Meeting

Ah Max

My dear task master, I shall endeavour this new year’s morning. 

Re popularity – no I don’t think so. With the advent of social networking we have been in touch more often. 

And now for your main. The various reasons – well it was posed initially in the spirit of a playful challenge. Secondly we seem to have started this relationship on a liberal, open to anything footing (where will it end? – this is the refrain).

This will be a first and I know how much into firsts you are.  I think it might be pleasurable apart from the taboo factor. Since seeing the Theodore Gericault painting of Three Lovers, which inspired a poem a few years back, recently re-worked on, indulging in a threesome has been something I’ve sometimes thought about.  

AW x

Ps it’s not a mandatory requirement for dating AW

PPS a challenge for Max – where do you think it will end? 

Sent on the hoof

How nice to have an email to read when sitting for my mid-night pee 🙂

Max

May I say how civilised of you to be peeing sitting down 

Sent on the hoof

It’s almost a legal requirement in Germany where I come from 🙂

Max

My admiration for the Germans continue 

Sent on the hoof

Btw I will be sending your homework back for a rewrite as I am strict 

The Headmaster

Max

Ooh (you might be interested to hear that provoked a favourable response)

x

Sent on the hoof

I am, I was scared of the opposite so learns me it is god to take risks and not try to safely please

Max

Eating mushrooms on toast

What kind of mushrooms are you eating?!! Seems to have had a most interesting effect on your typing 😊

I’m about to leave the house and all internet connection so I bid you sweet dreams. 

AW xxx

Sent on the hoof

Good!

Max

Refuelled and back to bed now.  Hope to sleep or may need to induce relaxation through orgasms.  Dirty thoughts welcome to help me get there 😉  enjoy your day x

Max

I’m certain your mushroom induced imagination will suffice. Oh, ok then.

Malaysian school girl. Stern headmaster.  Cane. Bare bottom.  Fellatio. 

Sent on the hoof

Ta and g’night x

Max

Hi AW

Thanks, that somehow seemed familiar and yet did the trick, I got my needed sleep!

Seen strange film with work colleagues consisting of one man in his car the entire film. He was driving to the birth of a daughter after a one night stand and told his wife on the way, had me in a cold sweat. He was also managing the biggest civil concrete pour in Europe and sacked from his job.

Too tired to do my homework or even correct yours now. 

Am missing Cassie terribly, her parents are back.

I’ve a fairly quiet weekend ahead it looks like so am not particularly looking forward to it but sure it will be ok. Have 4 things to do at noon on Saturday and not much else! 

Hope you have a good reunion tomorrow. 

Oh,ok,

Where will it end? We seem to have started this relationship on a liberal, open to anything footing, where will it end? 

The following mini-essay is written without knowing MDMA but with gut feeling…

As neither of us is extreme or naturally big risk takers it will all end safely. We won’t take the sexual risks very far, although it will seem so for us, which is all that matters. Neither of us is apt to fall in love  or have their heart broken I think we’re safe on that score too. You will be tied up with colourful Indian sari fabric ripped into ribbons and spanked and fucked until helpless.  You will dress me as a woman and take me out to a transvestite night and we’ll both enjoy that and feel closer for it. We’ll look after Cassie at Easter but give her back rather than kidnap her.  We won’t find another woman to go to bed with and I’ll chicken out of doing it with a second man but will think about it for a few seconds. You will try to stroke my prostate, finally, after mastering getting a finger straight without its neighbours getting in the way, but not find it or I won’t feel anything special. We will go dancing and you will swear never again. We will do lots of kissing and be nice to each other. 

Max x

ps Saturday things rescheduled so can do two of them

pps what town etc are you in?

Hi Max

Lovely to wake up from a travel lagged sleep this morning approaching noon to your email among several others – from beekeeping clubs, ELT news sites etc 

I’m on the island of Penang, my birthplace 48 years ago. We had a fabulously fun evening amongst ourselves – some fourteen of us siblings and nephews, nieces, etc. 

The old girls’ reunion tea is at a venue very close to where my grandmother used to live in town on Armenian Street. That area had been declared a world heritage site so her house has been sympathetically renovated and restored. 

I read your essay with mixed feelings – relief that there won’t be too much extreme sex and disappointed that we won’t fall in love or have our hearts broken. 

But what I really appreciate is that you are cautious in your approach to matters of the heart. And I really like that although I wonder if that’s the reason, it makes it difficult for you to fall in love ever.  I’m reading The Forever Girl by Alexander McCall Smith at the moment and it has an attractive central character whose lifestory the novel follows from the beginning in the Caymans. I’m only halfway through it. 

I’ve seen your film Locke. And it’s one of my favourite films of the year. I think its success owes as much to the writing as to Tom Hardy himself who is able to keep the audience on his side. 

I trust your honesty and insight to tell me where this relationship is heading as i myself will easily let my feelings be led astray and only do a stock take as it were when it’s far too late to be sensible. Having survived several break ups I’m slightly less risk averse on this front I suppose. 

Anyway must go and get ready now 

AW xx

Sent on the hoof

Dear AW

I’ve found you on the map. How was the reunion? It does sound nice there, I’m envious! 

I didn’t know you want to fall in love and have your heart broken. Is this the same girl that says on a first date she requires non-exclusivity or is (as I’m not realising) it possible to love one person and fuck another or to change one’s mind or all sort of other possibilities….

I wish I wasn’t cautious (or just untrusting/expecting perfect/hoping for better/hating myself and not allowing anyone close …or all sorts of other possibilities…) and want my heart broken once. I don’t know about my insight (your email), we’ve only met twice but I know myself fairly well. I like your way with words, your smile and humour, your intelligence and non-judgementalness which means I feel able to share personal information surprisingly easily, your liberalism, how easy and relaxed I am around you mostly. I’ve not often felt a soul connection yet, once when you told me you did law because your family wanted that and one other time, I can’t remember. I suppose, being honest, I’ve not felt I’ve glimpsed your heart a lot yet. I know I’m being impossible now telling you I don’t commit and for you to disclose your soul. Why would you just get hurt?

Tell me if I’m out of order or saying too much or too little. I never really know.

Where do you think it will end?

Max xx

Hi Max

All sorts of things are possible but it’s probably safe to say that I’m not a good enough object for anyone to fall in love with. Hence my bid for non-exclusivity.  I would be happy to aid you in your quest for ‘the one’ although when you find her you might not want to continue fucking me.  😢

Anyhow (my sister’s favourite expression), in being as honest and upfront about how I feel, I think we can both avoid misunderstanding the situation or getting hurt. And I like how you seem also to do the same. 

Perhaps due to the distance I’m really enjoying getting your emails and responding. What this means in terms of falling in love is anyone’s guess. 

I’m glad though that you don’t commit easily because I think it makes it clear that you don’t have similar expectations from me. 

I think coincidences can sometimes be misconstrued as a connection. We might have similarities in our upbringing or relations with our parents which make it easier for us to empathise with each other. Does this mean there’s a connection?

Came back from a fun reunion where some of us met up for the first time since we were 14. Most of my friends have not aged appearance wise!! CNY is a good time to organise a class reunion as most people have family reunions anyway and are back home for these hols.  They’re now planning for the one next year when we all turn 50!

One of my friends has just hooked me up with a reliable and licensed guide for my trip to Cambodia next week for which I’m extremely grateful.  I was beginning to question the wisdom of booking my lone trip after reading all the cautionary tales about how dangerous it might be etc.  

You might be able to see what I’m up to as I sometimes post photos on Facebook. Are you on it?  Can you find me?  Send me a friend request.  Internet connection permitting I might be able to accept it. Unless you have a phobia of social networking. 

AW xx

Sent on the hoof

Good morning AW

Could you tell me more about why you think you’re not a good enough object (and why you use that phrase?) for anyone to fall in love with? Sounds like how I feel about myself. Anyhow, I’ve been meaning to remind us somewhere that we’ve only met 3 times – maybe I shouldn’t be asking so much personal information and we ought to get to know each other gradually and normally?! Might be too late for that approach…. 

I  like your emails too and can get obsessed with contact and attention. 

I’ve had a quiet day today. Slept late, Friday is usually my day for catching up on all the sleep I miss during the week from waking at 3am. Had a bath, phoned a friend, did some email and admin stuff,  had quite a long nap and done bits and pieces since. Made Chinese sweetcorn soup and had a quick walk to get chocolate biscuits I’m craving and am soon to watch googlebox, which I like a lot. 

I felt watching Locke that I was seeing an obscure unknown film, partly because we were watching at work. I don’t know much about the film. Co-incidence that you’ve seen it too, as looking it up it was quite small. That co-incidence doesn’t make me feel a connection. i think that similarities in our upbringing or relations with our parents which make it easier for us to empathise with each other do mean there’s a connection. Interesting one about coincidences  being misconstrued as connection. Today’s philosophical question is What is connection? Maybe any co-incidence is a connection and that is all connection is? I’m not as cynical as that (I don’t think I’m cynical). Living in the same area is a co-incidence and a connection. Both liking the same booze too?

What are you doing in Cambodia? How far into the unknown are you going? What’s the danger? How did you feel about being on your own and how do you feel about being with a guide you don’t know?

Max x

casual ps    What extreme sex were you worried about?

Subject: The question of suitability

Good evening Max

Candidate might be a better word. Had ‘object of desire’ in mind in the middle of writing other email probably. 

Why unsuitable?  My record is not good and I have form when it comes to break ups.  Also I have a tendency to rush into things (by things I mean relationships) and speed them to an early end.  Er did you say we’d only met three times?  And now we’re on familiar and intimate terms?  Hmmm …

Now it’s your turn – why do you feel the same about yourself?

Why were you watching Locke at work with colleagues??

I’ve never seen goggle box. What do you like about it?

It’s been a long time since I made Chinese sweet corn soup. Do you add bamboo shoots besides egg?  I used to get tins of creamed corn to make it with. 

Have been tucking into street food here with a vengeance!  

I’m just going to visit the temples in Siem Reap in Cambodia – Angkor wat and then coming back. The guidebooks say that it’s not safe for women to be alone there after sunset !  I will definitely make sure  that I’m back in the city at sundown. The guide is someone my friend has had and recommended to relatives in the past so I’m sure he would be reliable. 

Connections and coincidences

Well we don’t like the same booze but I don’t think it matters, do you?  Whether people like the same I mean. When you have a lot in common with someone it probably feels safely familiar and safe enough to fall in love. But then again some people like the thrill of the unknown and fall for people who they know will break their hearts.  

Must do some morning exercise to burn off street food excesses. Back in a bit

AW xx

Hello

When I saw your subject line and started thinking you were suggesting we’re not suitable, I was worried ….

Why do you break up with people? What sort of form do you have?  How long do your relationships last these days AW? There are no wrong answers, well, chainsaws or saws like I keep would not be the right way to end them.

My turn – my track record means I lack confidence that I can love someone and want to be in a relationship. Which I think goes back to my relationship with my parents and their issues. I don’t say enough what I want or how I feel; I tend to try to please, I assume people don’t like me so I’m on the defensive, I’m too critical of other people and myself, I censor myself, I sulk and bear grudges, I don’t handle conflict, I don’t relax or feel myself when with people. Enough already? 🙂 (I should add for balance that I’m also secretly arrogant and think I’m better than other people at the same time as I think I’m useless and inferior to them).

We’re having film nights at work as we’ve a training room and projector and someone has a netflix subscription. It’s just 6 of us, a slightly social thing. We started at 7.30pm so it’s not in work time!

More later, off to read a bio of Sylvia Plath now and maybe sleep so look forward to your reply for 3am pee or when I finish night-time reading and before switching lights off.

xx

ps  what are you doing today?

Good morning Max

Went to a wet market and then to little India with my sisters and mother and brother in law this morning. We had lunch at an Indian – meal on a banana leaf. I wasn’t v hungry and just picked at the others’. It was 32C today and I don’t think I’ll be going out again later. 

I put up some photos on fb, int connection willing.  Finished reading The Forever Girl. It ended rather abruptly I thought. 

I’m not a fan of reality tv.  I tried watching Big Brother when it was all the rage a decade ago but it never appealed to me. 

On the question of extreme sex I’m not keen to indulge in – anything involving fists, voyeurs or groups or pain or different species or saws and other instruments of torture. 

There may be other things I’m not keen on.   I’ll fill you in as they come up. 😉

AW xx

Sent on the hoof

Hello AW

I met a friend for lunch with a couple of mutual acquaintances, two of them Czech, in a Czech owned bakery in Kilburn. Ahoy is hello in Czech. Cappuchino is cappuchino. Think that’s all we need to know. Went to a classical concert this evening for first time in 35 years, quite enjoyed it to my surprise, relaxing, meditative. Watched match of the day just now and Arsenal narrowly won, we’re 3rd now!! Tomorrow another friend for lunch and possibly visiting a friend in hospital and I really should do some fruit harvesting group accounts and arrange a foraging walk by email. Hopefully reading the Guardian too, eating nutella. I bought my first jar of that ever on Friday and am halfway through eating it off the end of my middle finger. 

What’s your self-analysis for why you don’t have a good record with relationships and speed things to an end? 

What day do you leave for Cambodia and sounds like you won’t have much internet access there?

Max x

Hi Max

A sleepy Max or one who’s still wide awake?

I’m going to church this morning. A first in many years!!  The whole family is attending. I shall be thinking of that Hozier song and that fit Russian dancer when my mind drifts mid service. 

I didn’t know there was a Czech bakery in town. I know there’s a Czech pub on West End Lane. 

I’ve never done much self analysis as to why shit happens and generally put it down to bad luck. But it’s happened so often that I really should think a little harder on it. I’m a creature of impulse and impatience I know and that may have something to do with it?  And though I like to please I can also go off the boil easily.  Why my marriage ended – apparently my ex was never really in love with me – he was flattered that someone 12 years his junior idolised him (I was 18 when we met) and the second relationship failed when I realised that he wasn’t my intellectual equal. I must have a checklist of suitable partners subconsciously, more later on that as really must go. 

Do you have a check list?

AW

Sent on the hoof

I’m going to bed soon, will read awhile, then check if I’ve got an email from you and then sleep….ah you’re leaving for Church so I’ll switch the computer off.

I don’t have a checklist but there are things that matter to me, like we talk equally (I get annoyed when the other person talks without needing me to say anything); self-reflection in my partner (!); a balance of being sensible but not too normal and a hundred other similar ones that mean no-one is ever going to pass all the tests 🙂

xx

Good morning!

Am at an old colonial style club, the Chinese Recreation, enjoying the cool of the shade and more importantly wifi connection!  My nephew gives a good sermon – he preached on the topic of forgiveness from a new testament epistle to Philemon.  I think it was the best part of the service as it was an evangelical church and didn’t have any of the traditional hymns or order of service as in anglican churches.  But it was more or less familiar because I used to attend a similar church as a teen in Singapore.

I think dating has made me more aware of what kind of people (for people read men) I get on with.  Like you I can’t bear the overly verbose types or ones with a sonorous tone of voice either.  Also not a fan of pessimists or hypochondriacs.  You get a cross from me for your love of reality TV, but it’s not a deal breaker <grin>.

You must tell me what you know about me that is definitely not tolerable in your book.  I think it could be my impulsiveness and lack of patience.  Although I don’t do much navel gazing I think I’m reasonably self aware.  Do you frequently test your dates?  You must let me know how i do.

After church we went to pay our respects at my father’s grave.  It’s in a lovely place near the botanical gardens on a hillside surrounded by ancient acacia and jacaranda trees.  We walked a little and were immediately drenched in sweat.  I think it’s a peaceful place and my dad’s grave is under the largest Flame of the Forest tree.

Ah Cambodia – I’ll be there the evening of the 24th until 26th.  A short visit just to walk around the angkor temples in Siem Reap.  I’d probably go back again in future.

Anyway, what are you doing today?

AW x

PS If you could would you rather date a woman half your age (for the obvious physical attraction) or one the same age as you?

Sent from a sedentary position

Hi AW

I’ve not (yet) noticed your impulsiveness or lack of patience. Have I missed any clues or not been so observant? I’ve not seen anything yet that is definitely not tolerable or even not tolerable. I think I’ve been very generous in saying what I like and am not so keen on about you in my emails?   But sometimes what I think I”m saying clearly is not clear at all as I fear being direct. I can repeat it if you like?

What do you mean by do I frequently test my dates? What do you like and not like about me, AW? What do you think I might not like about you?

Today am having a late lunch soon with an acquaintance-cum-friend in West Hampstead. Some computer based chores. But so far reading the Guardian, sleeping and not very much at all, which is good for me. 

Are you tempted to live in Malaysia again?

Being honest, a 27 year old woman would be a turn-on for her looks and I would be flattered. I’ve been dating women around my age, some older, some younger, generally within 7 years. The two women I went out with for 3 and 5 years recently are 10 years younger and 6 years older. Am I bad? 🙂

Max x

Sent listening and half-watching Hozier, who I’d never heard of

Hi Max

When you say you’ve been generous about saying what you like, did you mean that you hadn’t described any characteristics of mine that you found objectionable?  What did you mean exactly?  When we were doing the 36 Qs we listed what we liked. No negatives were mentioned (obviously for the purpose of the experiment!). 

Anyway have really enjoyed your company and emailing you. Didn’t you think it impulsive and impatient of me to see you a second and third time so soon?  And to jump into bed with you and accept your invitation to your flat with such alacrity??  I thought that you might have viewed such behaviour with misgiving. 

No I’m glad I can visit Penang but don’t wish to live here. 

Tests – I suppose I mean more questions or maybe engineer a scenario to see how I might react. 

I don’t think you’re bad for dating those people.   Why do you think I might think that?

I’d never heard of Hozier prior to that video either 😊. 

AW xx

Sent in a sticky state 

Hi AW

Ah, yes, I missed that or didn’t interpret as impatience or impulsiveness that we saw each other and went to bed so quickly but you’re right. I didn’t have misgivings. When you said at Parcel Yard that you’re non-exclusive I figured that you’re having an adventurous time and aren’t looking for anything serious. 

I worry about putting pressure on my partner to change rather than accepting them as they are. With you, I’ve felt frustrated at times not to discover more angst  or emotional complications – i wrote earlier “I’ve not felt I’ve glimpsed your heart a lot yet”. I’m puzzled given that your mother had such negative feelings towards you and your son has issues which you’ve been very honest and open about. I also don’t like it when my questions are not answered, e.g. from last time: what do you like and not like about me?

xx

Sent damp from cycling back from West Hampstead in the rain, with a stomach full of nutella and vietnamese food, with fingers sticky with brown nutella

nervous to write some of this, hope it’s ok and just seen you are still awake

Hi Max

Perhaps be more direct about what It is about me you’re not keen on please. 

AW xx

Sent in a slightly less sticky state having had a shower and lounging sans clothes in the cool of my bedroom (there’s an incongruous picture of a lion on the wall)

I’ll try! Why are you so keen to know what I’m not keen on? 🙂 I am too about me!

x

It’s our eager to please nature. But you’d offered to repeat what you’re not keen on about me in an earlier email which prompted this request – yes please. 

It’s v early days so there’s nothing yet I dislike about you. I really like your empathy and thoughtfulness. You have both intelligences – emotional and the conventionally regarded one. We may not agree on reality TV but that’s by the by.  You don’t seem to mind that I’m dating other people although you’re currently the only one I’m obsessively emailing !!

AW xx

Sent much cooled down

I’ve been wondering about asking you about what to say to each other about our dates with other people. We’re leaving them out. That might be good, maybe I don’t want to hear about your other sexual adventures and vice versa. 

Shall we try to be less eager to please? How much of a pleaser are you?

Did you get my Skype invite?

It is obsessive, shall we reduce at some point to save time and save communications for in person? Well, you’re going off line soon….

xx

sent starting to feel sick

Hi Max

Re angst – is it a bad thing that I seem serene in the face of emotional stress?  With my mother it’s definitely in the past and I have been able to put ill feeling behind me. I find some of the things she says mildly irritating but manage to avoid her without it becoming too obvious I’m doing that so as to prevent such irritation happening too often. 

With my son I’ve learnt to detach. Detachment was a lesson first discovered when my marriage was crumbling so I’ve had a lot of practice. 

You won’t be able to make me do what I don’t want to do. I might try just to please you but I may grow to resent doing so if I don’t get petted and told how good I am. 

Clearly this honest exchange is discomfiting to to you whereas I relish the opportunity to be honest. 

AW xx

Sent lying in bed

I want to be honest and am glad to have the opportunity so keep pushing for it, I appreciate it. I just don’t find it easy.

I find it hard to get my head round detachment. Also to put things like parents in the past. I stubbornly drag them around and don’t really believe they can be put in the past.

You like being praised? Did I give you enough a few emails back, the nice things I said about you and why I like you?

x

you’re up late!

Annoyed Tottenham salvaged a late draw  

Dear Max

How not to obsess. Turn off wifi and only have it on for 15 minutes a day. Yeah, right 

Sorry I didn’t see your Skype invite. Do you have what’s app?

I thought you like these written missives?  When we meet I’m sure we shall still have plenty to say. Although I can also find silence reassuring. 

AW x

Sent supine

Sent on the hoof

Hello

I don’t think I’ll be testing you but maybe a bit sometimes. I’m not planning any tests…

I don’t have whatsapp. 

I do like our emails though I go in and out of feeling keen and wanting distance which is what I do with partners, push pull, and that is bad, I’ve had bad feedback about that. I push them away and then when they give me a bit of space I pull them in and so they get confused. I prefer 3D to emails and worry about the amount of time I’m glued to a computer though sometimes the distance of emails makes it easier to communicate and be honest. Yes, I think we will still have things to say in person! 

So you are supine on the hoof? On a stretcher or in an air ambulance or luxury tuk tuk?

xx

Hi there

Now I know your push pull modus operandi I shall not over react either way.  But you need only say you want some space and I would probably back off. I shall try and do the same ie tell you when I want some ‘me’ time. 

Ok this is definitely my last email tonight as need some shut eye. 

You tell me such lovely things it’s really gone to my head which probably accounts for all this emailing.  I’m enjoying this adventure. Aren’t you?

Send me something to wake up to please 

AW xx

PS – definitely not on the hoof

Yes, I am enjoying it and like you. Told my lunch date that today. I told you about the push pull modus operandi to help you understand and manage that so your response is good (not a test, but you got it).

It is very late there for you, enjoy your sleep. Glad you’ve noticed the nice things I’ve said. Will send something for you to wake up to and I’m off to work tomorrow of course.

x

Good morning AW

I’ve completed the fruit harvesting accounts ready for our Treasurer’s careful scrutiny tomorrow evening. Hope I’ve not made any mistakes. And I’ve just received a nice card and loaf of home baked cake for looking after Nelly. I should share it with you 🙂 This is because I more or less complained about being taken for granted as the last 3 times they’ve asked me the day of departure. So I tried being more assertive and it worked! A nice choice of gift for me too, better than a nick nack.

I’m feeling a bit speedy, this leaving my job is exciting and means I’m getting much more praise and lovely comments than usual along with nice dating experiences lately (such as meeting you). I can quite easily get depressed so worry a bit that I’ll pay for this and a crash will come. Nothing to worry about – nothing too serious happens to me, I just feel useless and don’t want to talk to people much but I mostly carry on. 

How much do you like praise?

What date are you back in the UK? I now it’s around 2nd March….

I’ve finished my jar of nutella. 90% sugar and fat it is. I don’t think I’ll get it again for 10 years. 

How are you all getting on which each other there? 

My inspiration is going…do you want another essay? I’ve a list of philosophical questions somewhere. I could set you one for homework. How is your writing going?

Have a good day, not too sweaty and hope you’re looking forward to Vietnam.

Max xx

Now it’s nearly your bedtime!

Thank you for your lovely message waiting for me when I woke up.  It’s great that your efforts at being assertive are bringing you rewards.  This may well see a newer more assertive Max emerging.  I think I would like that a lot 🙂

Set away with your philosophical questions.  Obviously I’ll only discuss the ones that also tickle the prosencephalon.  

I’m back on the 1st, arriving at 5.35am!  will probably spend most of it recovering from jet lag as back at work the following day.

How much do I like praise – i think i thrive on it – only the well deserved ones of course.  

How long does the feeling of uselessness last? How do you usually get over it?

I’m looking forward to Cambodia, will visit Vietnam another time I think.  

Oh I thought I’d throw in the fact that I successfully fasted yesterday – for no particular reason except that I didn’t feel hungry and impressed some of my siblings by my apparent ability to resist the really tempting yummy food on offer.  I only had a small breakfast of fruit, nuts and kefir yogurt and drank some barley water  and tea the rest of the day.  I think that without the social pressure to eat I may do the same in Siem Reap over the next few days.  I should perhaps think about refuelling today … although I still don’t feel particularly hungry at the moment.

You asked me how I thought it will end – I hope it never does!  You said that you preferred 3D to this for fear of spending too long at the computer, but how is that bad? I’m not convinced that it’s all bad, which is probably why I don’t wring my hands in despair because my youngest son is on his laptop so much.   

So far things are going really well with my immediate rellies – the sister I’m staying with spoils me by getting my breakfast ready for me every morning, my brother in law drives us all everywhere, failing which my sister does or I found that I could do just as well.  We all have heart to heart chats about what to do with our mother, despite her frailty, my mother is quite healthy and merely has to be careful not to injure herself.  Most of the folk out here that we know who have passed on over the last five years have done so just after a fall which they never fully recovered from – or from cancer. 

We have some meals out together (13 at the table), take turns to pay for these quite amicably (or split it 3 ways amongst the 2 brothers and one brother-in-law), look at house renovation plans (my mother’s for which my second sister is footing the bill. 

Conscious that it’s past midnight and that you might like to get an email response from me before you turn in so here’s wishing you good night  xx

AW

Sent still in bed but awake with the sweet chittering of birds outside my bedroom window 🙂

It’s breakfast time, managed to go to bed a little earlier than usual. And off to work now so I’ll reply properly this evening before your trip…

Max x

Good morning AW

I hope you have been eating enough to get to Cambodia and also that you remember the country you are visiting better than I do 🙂  Why are you cutting down on food and looking to eat less without the social pressure to eat? Ah, you said you’re not hungry but is that all there is to it? I want something left to cuddle you know! 

How long does the feeling of uselessness last? How do you usually get over it?  It might last a day or two and end when I go to work and feel useful or productive, or if something nice happens like praise!

I feel I spend too long at my computer, it feels like most of my free time though it probably isn’t that bad. I try to switch it off. I think its better for me to get outside or see people or be physically active more. It’s not all bad, and better to be in contact with people digitally than not at all, so I think it’s good for people who are isolated for example. But it can replace face to face contact which I think is qualitatively different. 

Hope the birds are chittering sweetly for you. I’m about to eat in front of Channel 4 news.

Back from the news and latest MP lobbying row. Your philosophical question is: are we all the same fundamentally? i.e. are the differences between us superficial and underneath apparent differences we all have the same need for love, wanting to be happy, emotions of anger, anxiety, happiness, humour etc.

Max xx

Hi Max

You’re probably fast asleep as I write this.  At least I hope you are as my laptop tells me that it’s nearly 2 in the morning in London.

I’m cutting down on food because I’d like to get back to a size 8/10.  So it’s vanity driven, this fasting.  With a few days left before I get back I don’t think I’ll lose that much weight though.

I think our basic human needs are the same but differences are not only superficial they arise due to external influences which shape our perceptions of what else we should strive for (if we should strive at all) – society, love, happiness, etc…  These influences obviously come from our upbringing, cultural and geographical background, education and experiences.  As far as emotions go we all have the same but some things affect us to a greater or lesser degree depending on … hmm I’m not quite sure what – but I do know that we can learn to feel less unhappy or angry or anxious and even to curb our impatience. 

I don’t have any philosophical questions for you this morning.  More of a personal nature if you don’t mind my nosiness.  So, why don’t you go away much?  When was the last time you had a holiday and where did you go?  Was it an enjoyable experience?  When was the last enjoyable holiday you took?

AW

Sent from a sedentary position – in a very relaxed state having consumed papaya which always reminds me of my father (his favourite fruit).

Thanks for having an email ready for my mid – night pee…..  

I like that you’re honest about the vanity fasting.

I agree with your answer!

I don’t really enjoy holidays. If I go on my own I feel lonely and if I go with someone else I feel under pressure. And my frugality means I think it costs a lot of money not to enjoy myself. Last ‘proper’ holiday was about 7 years ago, I had a girlfriend Clare who looooved holidays and I went away about 5 times as far as the South of France. Not sure when the last enjoyable holiday was. I did enjoy the USA when I was 17! I would like to change this part of myself, it’s not very healthy probably and I’m ashamed of it

Please carry on being nosy!

Max x

Hi Max

Glad to oblige. Would you really like to overcome your dislike of holidays?  Do you have a strategy for this?  I went to Iceland on my own last December for a week and really really loved it. So much so that I intend to return in the spring or summer and drive round the country. It would be nice to have company 😉

What did you like about the US when you were 17 and how long were you there for?

What did you really like about your recent holidays?  What didn’t you like in particular?  Why are you ashamed of the way you are?  You may have legitimate reasons for mistrusting holidays. 

Sometimes I think it’s quite relaxing to just have some time off work and without responsibilities to simply read and do nothing. 

But you’re right. It’s quite important to go out and make social contact. Another reason my last relationship failed was because F was rather anti social.  He would not want to meet people or go out much. Towards the end I was going out on my own so much it felt as though I was single and so it made it easier to end the relationship. 

Is there anywhere you’d like to go to and why?  

AW xx

Hi AW

I like the friendliness in the USA and have good memories of the beach in SF and wandering around NY and exploring the Grand Canyon. I usually stay in Kilburn and catch up with things and do things I don’t usually have time for. It can be quite stressful planning and going away. I’m ashamed because it’s bad that I’m not good at enjoying myself and people expect you to go on holiday and ask you about it. 

A bit early for me to think about going on holiday together but we could go outside London for a day, I’d like that, or even a night if I’m feeling very brave.  I’d like to go to Iceland (honestly), USA, Russia, maybe Eastern Europe, Penang 🙂 You?

I’ve been offered 6 months work today on this project, and have made a list of 20 (!) questions to ask before deciding. I will probably take it which means I won’t have free time in April or have all sorts of other amazing opportunities 🙂

Interesting to hear about your last relationship, I’ll be nosy about that when you’re back in Blightly. I imagine you cutting your way through jungles and remote terrain. I imagine completely wrong. 

How are your travels? Is there any AW left to hug?

Max xx

wrapped in coat and scarf as no heating on as only in living room for 30 minutes this evening

Subject: Wandering in the undergrowth

Not quite cutting through jungle but I asked my guide to leave me in a quiet spot at lunchtime while he and the driver went to have a half hour break for lunch and the place echoes with the cicadas. 

The other two temples he took me to earlier were overrun with people. Spectacular but not so enjoyable. I’d much rather be where I am now at the site of one sad unvisited ruin to contemplate life’s profundities and write you a reply (which I’m not sure when will be sent). 

As it’s so deserted I went to a shady corner and had a little pee. Had drunk about 2 litres of water since 8 this morning!

I feel quite abandoned and forgotten here. There’s a cool breeze to accompany the sawing noise of the cicadas but nothing else. 

Have you been looking through my pictures in Facebook?  Put some up of you today or in the next few days 😄.  

Did I leave any burning questions you might have asked before unanswered?  If I did I’m sorry please ask again. 

When would you like to do this day trip and where to?

AW

Hello

Making corn on cob with marg for breakfast….I liked your fb pic of grand nieces …..day out 7th or 8th? …..   good that you’re asking about unanswered questions…. will audit but you’ve been better than most people :)….enjoy image of you peeing outside….any questions I’ve not answered?

Brighton is the obvious place but may think of … York?

x

A few Qs unanswered. But will corner you when I’m back (grin)

Sent on the hoof

PS i meant put your own pics in your own fb page. Head addled in the heat

look forward to being cornered.,,sweetcorn nearly ready.

Link i sent you includes pic of me in case you’re missing me or have forgotten what i look like 🙂

x

I can’t quite access links, boo !

Have you forgotten what I look like?

Why York?  Perhaps you might like to pin me against a corner …

Sent on the hoof

Very clear memory of your face and other parts too.  Yes, would like to find a corner to pin you.

York  – never been, it’s in the North, direct line from KX, Vikings and lots of alleys with corners

Enjoy the rest of your day! I’m off now. xx

Hi AW

Would you like to read about my day? 

Got to work at 8.30 after being scandalously delayed. Volunteer cancelled due to boiler repair. Next volunteer arrived on time and did very good data input. A Romanian woman who spoke no English came in and turns out first volunteer was Romanian and translated for us. Got some publicity out for next Wembley recruitment. Heard 65 people recruited via us are starting work at Cup Final on Sunday, hurrah!. Spoke to my colleague about my possible new job and arranged to meet him tomorrow, though he thinks he has nothing more to tell me about the job. I told him I have 20 questions. Hmm. Had weekly volunteer team meeting – 7 of us, a good turnout. Agreed to have a voter registration event and who to invite for community feast. Left work early to visit friend in hospital. She was very quiet and subdued but otherwise seemed okish and felt like visit was appreciated (sure the fags were). She’s been sectioned but hopes to be out in 2 weeks. On train home prepare for potentially important meeting with local property developer. Watched first 20 minutes of Arsenal game. Went home convinced we would walk to victory. Arsenal lose 1-3 (disaster, disaster). Cook veggie burger with trimmings including fried onions. Check emails and AW’s fb page, see driver. Burn onions looking at driver. Have bath. Book place on taster session for School of Social Entrepreneurs course. Write email to AW. Go to bed and read. 

Hope your last day in Cambodia is good. What will you be doing? Have you met any interesting people? Done anything out of the ordinary? 

Max xx

Hi Max

Reading your email while waiting for phone battery to re charge (died in Cambodia). It’s a scandal that they don’t use the same three pin electrical points as the rest of the world (ie GB  and Malaysia)

Life of Max and Max’s work day was a charming read. I’m sorry you burnt your onions looking at the wrong man. I might have flirted harder with my guide except that my friend who recommended him already warned me off him.

Not sure I’m going back to Cambodia unless I know it’s a quiet season. I very much doubt that there’s such a thing. 

Flight gate closing in 20 mins so had better run

Xxx AW 

Sent on the hoof

Hope you arrived safely and find another driver x

Max

PS – How will it end? – with decorum, honesty, diligence and simplicity

Subject: Decorum, Honesty, Diligence, Simplicity

What a pair of fraudsters we are – I mean there’s scant decorum in our dealings – overly eager trysts before I left, answering awkward 36 and more questions at close quarters. 

From a simplistic adult adventure at the beginning this has become something a little more complicated with the distance of the last 10 days. I suppose at least there is honesty, a diligent honesty of how we see things in these email exchanges. 

On board the flight back to Penang I was thinking about my experience of the last two days and realised it might seem strange and unfamiliar to you, South East Asia. Cambodia is a very poor country and I found the night market quite disturbing – from some of the strange foods to the more obvious ones catering to the tourist trade and I’m sorry to say rip off attitude of the locals. On the other hand my guide and driver have both been lovely and hospitable.  And my guide quite perceptive about what I wanted to see or not see and when I might have had enough of certain things and not to press too hard for me to do some of the touristy things in his itinerary. 

So what’s on today’s diary for you?  I’m interested to hear more about your friend in hospital too.  How do you know her?

My sister and brother in law came to meet me at the airport (again). My little great nieces are returning to China tomorrow morning so we’ll probably see them one last time tonight. 

Hope you have a productive day and look forward to the next episode of A Day in the life of Max. 

AW xx

Sent on the hoof

Make up your mind, fraud or honesty? 🙂 x

Simplistic it ain’t. !!

Sent on the hoof

Just been offered second job this week! X

How will you decide?

Sent on the hoof

Hi Max

You must be feeling pretty buzzed with these job offers. Really pleased for you. 

Saw my brother’s family this evening and the two adorable ones made us loom band bracelets .

Was going to have an early night but fireworks popping everywhere so may read instead. How are you getting on with the Plath biog?  I’m going to choose something from my kindle I think. 

AW xx

Hello AW

I’ve had a meal with colleagues at one our homes, very nice of C to invite 5 of us over. My colleagues are incredibly unPC for the voluntary sector or anyone. Shocking jokes I hesitate to repeat. There is a lot of jocular rudeness that I’m never quite sure is purely jocular. They seem to get on though. I work at a different location so spend little time with them.  There was music on and Hosier was playing so I told everyone what it was and felt very cool and young!

I spent 10 weeks travelling round India 30 years ago. The Cambodian Embassy is a 15 minute walk from where I live. So I know what the place is like very well 🙂

Today I met Sam, Marketing Manager, and as you know got offered a job developing community in Wembley and when I said it probably wasn’t for me, some consultancy work. This afternoon i discussed a job offer from my current employer. I tried to negotiate 31.5 hours instead of 35 and to do it compressed in 4 days and not work extra hours as is the norm.  We’ll see what they say and answers to other questions such as are there targets and what’s the budget? That would leave time for other things including the consultancy work. Strangely not buzzing, more overwhelmed by information and choice. Partly as Sam told me her life history including a parent who left Nazi Germany, her 4 miscarriages and her mother’s mental health problems, which created a connection but was a lot to take in at a very fast pace. I’m pretty sure I’ll go with the current job tackling isolation (on a 6 month basis initially) and tack on the consultancy work. In between I sold £26.40 worth of fruit and veg from a stall at the primary school with 5 children. 

Have finished Plath bio. Lily – will tell you when we meet. I met her on a blind date 24 years ago, it was always platonic. My dating goes back a long time, AW! 

Want to meet Tuesday evening or Friday or Saturday? 

Hope you’ve had some rest and are not all skin and bone and the loom band suits you. 

Max x

Hi Max

How are they your colleagues when you work at a different location?  Were you the only one not part of that location or are you all at different locations?

I think I will have lots of questions for you from this cool and young email of yours alone!  Perhaps I’ll ask them on Tuesday evening 🙂  Another example is how did you first meet Sam etc… I wonder if I would be so curious if Sam had been a man, possibly, but less?

Well I’m glad to hear your dating goes back a long time – I used to date before I got married too, you know 😉 x

I’m not skin and bone but will be a svelter AW (I can but dream) when you next see her!  Am pleased to report that I’ve lost 2kgs since arrival.  This is quite unheard of as I was apt to put on over 2kgs after consuming the goodies here.

Got up late this morning to find that my sister and brother in law have gone out.  I’m typing this on my own in my aunt’s old house.  The air conditioning is maintaining a pleasant 26C coolness (it felt burning hot when I stepped outside onto the porch to see if anyone was around outside the house) for which I’m grateful.

It sounds like you’d pretty much already decided about the job … but still went for the Wembley thing – (more Qs coming) – why do you want to keep Fridays free?  What do you like about doing consultancy work? Where is all the fruit and veg being stored/coming from?? What are the proceeds going towards?

Today I shall be going to visit my aunt in her nursing home and my brother has already hinted that they’re going to fatten me up by taking me out to dinner this evening. And in between some more souvenir shopping – I’ve already got a scarf and top for my daughter and daughter in law.  Not sure what to get for the boys.  I find males trickier – perhaps some duty free for my son, I got a head of a Buddha for one of my bee buddies who has been looking in on the bees for me – this is F who also popped by the house when neither the older children was able to be around for my youngest last week.  

Good night and here’s hoping this gives you some reading material for your midnight break

AW xx

Sent from a sedentary position

Hi AW

They are my colleagues because we all have the same small employer and yes, I’m the only one not at the central location, because I’m the only one currently working for a project based in a particular locality so I want to be on site.  I’m used to and kind of prefer working on my own, though I have been known to then complain of being isolated and not having support 🙂

I met Sam through an introduction by Leo Johnson (Boris’s brother!) as he is in the fruit harvesting group and doing some consultancy work for the same group. Classic old school tie networking? Except in the vineyards rather than the golf course. I met Sam to collaborate as our organisations are 10 minutes walk away and we are both trying to create community. This second meeting she offered me the job but that wasn’t on the agenda though I had been half expecting it from hints dropped previously.

Is the New Year over now or does it continue for longer, I think it’s a long holiday? Are you pleased to be coming home or would you prefer to stay there longer?

Today was my day off in theory and I did some emailing and went to Uni East London to do a debrief for leaving my job with a researcher there. Another person telling me her life story: adopted aged 4 into an arty intellectual family but both birth parents in and out of prison. I though she was a middle class charmed 20 something and must learn not to judge books by their covers.

On the way back I just went wassailing in Kings Cross and to the library. I text invited 4 friends to join but none could, after one blew me out today as it’s her last chance to see her daughter before daughter converts to Judaism and marries in Singapore next week, so fair enough.  Probably for the best as I’m grumpy and tired. Feel like going to sleep now and may read my new books and have a very early night but might end up being awake till 1am….

Look forward to my mid-night reading and hope you slept well and have a good journey back, AW.

Max x

ps

Fruit and veg comes from a local environmental charity. It’s non-profit so proceeds just cover cost of veg and we subsidise then transport cost.

Keep Fridays free for volunteering stuff that takes up about 8 hours a week I guess

It would be my first consultancy so good to try that and nice to have on my CV if it happens

Hi Max

Good morning  😄

Thank you for assiduously getting through all my questions. I’ll save more for next time. 

The new year celebrations traditionally last two weeks but I’m glad I’m coming home. My mother is beginning to get a little more on my nerves and I shall be relieved for the distance. I feel more for my aunt her twin who is now in a nursing home even though she’s fairly healthy. 

I tend to wake up in the night but go back to sleep quite easily. I’ve just started reading Gen x by Douglas Coupland and hope to do more reading on the plane. 

What would you like to do for our date on Tuesday evening? I tend to finish work at 5  and would prefer to go home to sort out dog and boy before venturing out although I have in the past asked boy to sort himself and dog out so that I might be able to go out in the evening 😊. Except that since I haven’t seen much of either I think I’d feel happier if I went straight home after work first. 

You’re welcome to come over to mine if you still feel like it. 

AW x

Sent on the hoof

I enjoyed Gen X. I’ve been trying to get my head round what time your plane leaves and reckon it’s about now but get terribly confused with time zones and clocks going backwards and forwards.  ???

Tue dilemma is between wanting you to come here and then tempting to go to bed but thinking we should talk first with clothes on. (I need to talk about going to yours first as have reservations.)   How about a meal out near here to ensure the latter?  

Max

X from iPhone in a sedentary position after three hours sleep

Hi r u still awake?

Sent on the hoof

Yup!

Max

Hi Max

I’m 8 hours ahead this time of the year and my flight doesn’t leave until twenty to nine this evening (Penang time). 

I was going to suggest that if you wanted to cycle to mine you may use the shower/bathroom if you’re worried about putting off my olfactory nerves 😳

But then again it might not be that you have reservations about … you may have a fear of dogs or adolescent boys. Is that it? Neither bites I can assure you.  Or what is it?

You don’t want to see me in my hat as a mother … It spoils the other illusion of an adventurous romp perhaps? hmm. 

Anyway I hope you’ll tell me your reservations. I don’t mind coming over to your neck of the woods for dinner. 😊

AW x

Sent on the hoof

Adolescent boys . ..seems very soon to meet him. 

Ah, you gain time coming this direction, I was thinking other way as you’re ahead. I never get the summer time change either x

Am going to sleep now so wish you a good last day and farewells there 🙂 x

Max

One adolescent boy ….. I think the feeling is mutual.

He hardly ventures out of his room, typical of his tribe.

Good night x

Sent on the hoof

Hi AW

Have a good flight and enjoy Gen X – I did, it’s good and fun and has an energy. I’ve been out to Kilburn High Road, getting keys cut, ISA sorted, bread, M&S ready meals rarely for me and a paper to enjoy. It’s cold, windy and slightly wet. Glad I didn’t try going to tennis today.

I can’t remember if you have a change on the way home – Germany?  

Max x

Kuala Lumpur. Are you v good at tennis?  Club level ? Pro?

Sent on the hoof

I don’t usually make the Masters tournament but broke into the top 20 last year 🙂

Have we done a Stella Grey? 🙂

xx

The obsessive emailing. Maybe. But we’ve been wittier and maybe more honest. 

Top 20. Gasps. I shan’t offer to challenge you then 😉

AW xx. Boarding. Only a 45 min flight to KL and a two hour wait until london flight. 

Sent on the hoof

Glad you landed safely! How is your youngest while you’ve been away? Have you been in contact with each other much from Penang? Recommend M&S veggie moussaka. Now for my nap…

x

Perceptive or optimistic?  Yes landed in KL. 😄

Facebook messaging useful thing for keeping in touch with the kids. Youngest has been in good spirits I think. 

Now I’m nearly back will this back and forth come to an end? It has been an interesting experience. What are your thoughts on this?

AW xx

Sent on the hoof

Being honest, along the lines of Pascal’s wager about God 🙂 

Being honest, I think distance makes obsessional emailing more permissible so would expect it to subside in frequency but we’ll see. Reality is more complex than the screen…let’s see…we hardly know each other after 3 meetings in 4 days but I’m looking forward to seeing you again on Tuesday. Peeing will never be the same again and the nights and days lonelier 😦

Have you started the book?

xx

Good morning and welcome back to cool Blighty. Hope your flight wasn’t delayed and you got some sleep and can rest today? Were you sat next to anyone interesting or with whom you could flirt? How will you get home from Heathrow so early in the morning?

I’ve had a very quiet, restful day and needed it. Am slowly getting my flat back into order after being out 5 evenings running. A button is firmly sewed back onto my coat. The kitchen surfaces have been washed and floor swept. Washed clothes are back in the wardrobe.

Sunday morning I will be gardening at Kilburn tube station and I have quite a few bits of paper and some emails that I should do something with so I can see my computer table’s burgundy glass again. In the evening I may see a friend who’s nearby for a cuddle workshop.

I told you a lie before and will summon up the courage to tell you the truth*

Max xx

*  I am not in the world’s top 20 at tennis, Amy. I am in the top 10, maybe top 5, at the tennis group at Parliament Hill. This means I’m an average sort of player. I hope you are not too disappointed and can forgive me? I am willing to prostate myself again 🙂

How strange, my midnight pee is 5.40 this morning

v coincidental.  Just landed.

Thank you for most amusing emails which greeted me as I await my luggage.  Looking forward to your prone prostate.

Greetings from tired prostate.

Catastrophe – luggage lost!

Fancy a chat?

We chatted, we texted each other a little more, we met, went out for dinner, had more experimental (but safe) sex and I continued to date and chat with a few others.  Max, meanwhile reiterated that his normal dating pattern was to meet up once a week, which to me was a totally unsatisfactory number of times to develop an exclusive relationship.  But then again, who’s looking for exclusivity?

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s