He was the charming, classy, well dressed, romantic, foolish, passionate and artsy one.
A damn whirlwind of excitement from beginning to end, I’d say. I’d lay in bed with thoughts caressing my mind of things I’d want to do when the sun would wake. The sun didn’t wake often, but I was happy just the same. Naturally, drinking tea was the obvious first choice of physical work. Mind you, a cup of tea was almost always the cure for any sort of emotional, mental or physical illness. Anything and everything that followed the morning tea was then documented in the crevasses of my mind and now only lay idle as I reminisce on the brief period of time when I was in love.
I’d rest my head on his broad shoulders on long tube rides, sometimes hoping they’d never end. Then the words, “mind the gap,” would ring in my ear as soon as the next stop pulled us in. I’d leave the Waterloo station and walk in the rain, with his hand in mine, to my internship building that faced the magical wheel that is the London Eye. His kiss on my forehead stayed warm on my wet skin until the sun would set. Then he’d pick me up after work and would say, “let’s try this…,” three words that made me mad with excitement each time.
He eased me into things I had never done and urged me to explore everything, because I was young and foolish after all. He would take me to places I’d only read of in history books and had only seen in movies. He would introduce me to people that were like me in every aspect or the complete opposite, and I loved them either way; the differences didn’t seem like obstacles anymore.
When the rainy days came I’d cuddle with him on the cheap couch we had and fall asleep to the falling of droplets outside the window. When the homesick times shook me, he’d show me new places I’d never seen, whether it be a corner book store off Tottenham Court Road or one of many curry restaurants on Brick Lane. I remember the first taste of fish and chips at the corner pub with him. The taste of mushy peas quickly became an interesting and familiar favorite. We drank cider and watched the city come alive. I had never felt more alive in that moment.
There was always things to see, castles to explore and people to meet. Even people from generations passed, were people to see. An afternoon stroll through the Highgate Cemetery to visit the final resting place of the father of socialism, Karl Marx, was considered an adventure. Writers, artists, actors, singers and locals lay under each step I took, covered with trees and shrubbery and wild flowers. As unnerving and spine-chilling as it may seem, it was completely peaceful.
London made me dance and sing and act and play to anything and everything he took me to, from the never ending thrilling nights of Camden Town to the elegant quietness and homey feels of Ealing. He was thrilling and sexy and presented me places full of beauty like the impeccable courtyard at the Somerset House and the historical authenticity of Shakespeare’s Globe. We toured the Victoria & Albert Museum and walked through Hyde Park, where the gardens might swallow you whole, but I secretly liked that they could.
He’s the one I fell utterly under a spell of addiction to. The one with an expiration date I knew I’d have to face. The one I find imagining myself in the arms of for the rest of time.