Updated: Apr 18
and I have no idea why.
Ok, well, of course I know why, really.
I have screwed up all of my past relationships, two of which were pretty special. It is as simple as that. As I allude to here https://www.my11yearplan.com/post/dating-apps. I have always found it easy to attract women, which yes is arrogant, but as I explain, it is a fact. I often get attention when I am on a night out, my friends notice ladies giving me the 'side eye' and if anyone asks them about me, when I am in the loo for instance, they will say, "Paul? Oh he is really lovely, intelligent and a dolphin trainer..." A dolphin trainer.
In Shrewsbury. The River Severn is not really known for marine mammals, although one of my mates is convinced there are sharks within it. I love them for that stuff.
These crazy buggers https://www.my11yearplan.com/post/the-pink-crocs
My last serious relationship ended in October 2019 after four years, some amazing experiences and holidays, one dog and a house purchase.
I moved out of that house in February 2020, with a view to taking some time out to go travelling, explained here https://www.my11yearplan.com/post/the-van-months
and if you read, or have read that post, you can see it didn't work out and I am back in the land of living a normal life...
Hang on, 'normal life', what even is that?
(This is your 5 second, he is off on a tangent warning).
I have always despised that unwritten, but also widely accepted adage that by a certain age the expectations, as a man, are that you have a mortgage on your four bedroom box on an estate of exactly the same boxes, a wife, 2-3 kids and are well and truly engrained in the rat race, drive a BMW company car and your life runs in a pattern that millions of others follow. I see 'them' walking around town with strollers, they have a style of dress that is replicated and screams 'I am a new dad' and they are laden down with so much stuff to sustain and keep happy the drain on their lives and finances and I think, 'no thank you'. It's not that I don't like kids, I do, I spent ten years going on a Year 6 Residential school trip as an adult helper with the school my brothers attended and loved it, but I also loved them going home at the end of the week! I taught my brothers to ride their bikes and took them on their first trips to Theme Parks etc, all the fun, none of the responsibility. There is the truth huh?
When I was married our circle of friends were all either childless or had grown up children and we were free to make plans at short notice.
If anyone in our group became new parents, they naturally fell away from the group, not for any other reason than a significant change in their circumstances and priorities.
I still get the question, 'why don't you have children' and it is, on occasion, said with almost scepticism and even a certain wariness by some of the ladies I have dated and generally met for the first time, or even before I have met them, just text chatting, it comes up. I feel like saying;
'What difference does it make? Maybe I can't have children, maybe my wife couldn't have children, maybe I did have children once, but they died in tragic circumstances and you have dragged up horrific memories I have spent thousands of pounds on counselling to suppress...' OK, ok, that may be a bit dramatic, but I just hate the assumption that there is something 'wrong' with me because I haven't conformed to that horrible level of expectation. Wait, come back reader, apologies, I promise I have stopped ranting, I almost went full Gemini killer mode again.. [Abruptly calm and composed]
The Gemini Killer: Oh. Gracious me. Was I raving? Please forgive me. I'm mad.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8SnuM7cRwww Back to the subject in hand.
I have been officially single for over two and half years, the longest spell in my whole adult life, there was a short meeting of minds in the summer of 2021, but as per the dating apps post, that didn't work out, again because of me. There is also the very fact that I never seem to be happy with what I have, and the power of hindsight would be a beautiful thing, because I feel my life would be different. I was always looking for the next one.
A terrible way to live and to treat people.
I know I am past that now, I have spent the last couple of years really reflecting on who I was and I have put him in box with a strong lock. I don't want to be single. I have a certain type. I guess we all do. My ex best mate certainly does, his ex wife had a certain look and then when that broke up he was with another lady for over 12 years, and then he met someone who is the spitting image of his ex wife and that was it. End of the 12 year relationship, just like that, thank you, bye bye, don't let the door hit you on the way out. No judgement, I am simply making the point that having a type is a powerful thing. My type?
Blonde hair, slim and petite, simple as that.
I will always home in on the blondes in a room full of people.
My ex wife is, well was, until she changed her hair colour after we separated, a blonde, my last serious relationship was with a blonde lady, the short lived relationship in 2021, yep, you guessed it, a blonde lady. Clearly that hasn't worked, so I have tried dating brunettes recently, and never get past the first date, one even got food poisoning at the restaurant I recommended, or it could have been the amount of booze consumed. I guess I will never know, the text chat soon ended after that date.
I have recently started spending my weekend evenings in what I now class as my local, in a bid to meet new people in what is still a relatively new town to me and maybe even a lady. It is a proper pub and it reminds me of my last proper local, The White Swan aka The Mucky Duck in Bishops Waltham, which sadly is now an Indian restaurant. Progress? Within my new local is a lady.
No shocker there, it is on occasion full of ladies, but there is one in particular, who also happens to be the landlady.
Boom, what could be more perfect, it is combining two of my favourites things, ladies and pubs, your author may have landed on his feet here.
But, she does not fit my 'type'. I am not going into detail, just trust me when I say, she is not my usual type.
She has the most stunning smile, honestly, it knocks me sideways whenever she smiles at me. For weeks I respected her being at her place of work and business and was polite when I approached the bar and she would ask 'what do you want' and would reply with, I'll have a Butty Bach please. Its an ale, for those of you wondering, not some quirky food or sex thing they do in here in Shropshire...
Where does my mind go sometimes? Inside I was screaming to reply with 'your number' in a cheesy and clumsy way that would likely be met with derision and a look, that only a landlady of a pub can muster, that would leave me hiding away in a corner, out of sight, downing my pint, before a quick scurry out the door and never darkening the pub again.
But we did keep catching each others eye during the evenings and it was noticed by some friends I had made and would sit with.
I mentioned to the same friends that 'there is something about this lady' and they kept encouraging me to talk to her, they even had her sit next to me once, I froze, which is unusual for me, normally I am so confident. Anyway, I plucked up the courage a couple of weeks ago, found her on Facebook and sent her a 'hey, I like you' text via Messenger. Yes, pathetic I know, but as I said it didn't feel right to ask her out across the bar. It was well received and we have spent a few nights, in her pub, chatting when she doesn't need to be behind the bar and the smile is truly amazing, but, it isn't going any further than that and it is evident the more we chat that our lives are clearly very different, not a bad thing I know. I know she may just be sussing me out, which is fine, of course, but there is no recent mention, from either of us, of meeting outside of the pub and I really want to see her outside of that setting.
We did agree to meeting for coffee initially, but it didn't happen for a number of reasons and the subject appears closed.
I want her to see me outside of that setting, so I am going to take some Malbec flavoured bravery juice today whilst at the theatre and later ask her out, properly.
Then I am going to hide in the corner, down my pint, scurry out the door and find myself a new local... ha ha. Bloody hell, I have gone off on some tangents there, I am sorry my faithful reader, all I wanted to do was explore 'why am I single'? I still don't really know, maybe I am just a bit of a dickhead. Don't answer that...