It’s the day after my bruising encounter with the Swiss but sadly I have no time to wallow as I have to haul ass to one of my best friend’s weddings. My mate and I forget our invitations in our hungover panic and end up toddling around London in 30 degree heat looking for the venue. We arrive with just minutes to go, sweating like a pair of boiled hams.
The two grooms glide serenely down the aisle and speak tender, poignant vows to one another as a trickle of sweat pools uncomfortably in my bottom. As two people promise to spend the rest of their lives together I try to surreptitiously scratch my arse.
The truth is: I needed this wedding. As you get older you get a little starved for romantic love – not just in your own life but in other people’s too. My friends who are in relationships are happy but not in that stargazy, swoony, early days kind of way but in the quiet, niggly why-didn’t-you-pick-up-some-bulbs kind of way.
Other couples start to fray at the seams, bickering and yapping in private or public depending on how honest they are. Stony silences, hissed swear words, tears and tantrums at 4am – I have known and lived them all and I need to know that something’s coming that will make the inevitable downpours worthwhile; that there’s still a bit of love in the old girl yet.
So I laugh at the speeches, weep at the vows and fall head over heels in love with love all over again.
A few days later a friend and I are chatting about what happened with the Swiss.
“I just haven’t met anyone like her…well…ever. How can she not be gay?”
“Not everyone’s going to feel the same way about you darling. And remember, in some ways you’re still ahead of your time. Lots of women don’t feel ready to come out yet – maybe they never will.”
“I guess so. It’s just so frustrating when you meet someone and you know it could be so awesome but…”
“I know…Also don’t take this the wrong way or anything but what exactly were you expecting to happen? She lives there, you live here – realistically it was never going to work out.”
I know that she’s probably right and yet I’m glad I put myself out there all the same. After all, the newlyweds met drunkenly on a night bus when they were both living in separate cities and now ten years on they’re married. Extraordinary love stories can happen if you can only open your heart and mind to them.
So yes, I’m disappointed but I won’t let this get me down. My own love story is still out there and maybe it’ll be a humdrum ‘meet and two vag’ affair or maybe it’ll be something a little more unusual. Sometimes you just need to have a little faith. Because fortune favours the brave and, sometimes, true love is stranger than fiction.