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Poisoned

  Thu 21st July 2011

Kim came up on Monday for a period that I keep wanting to describe as a weekend, although it wasn't a weekend, and felt much longer. This is not a derogatory statement at all; rather, the elongation of time is connected with the fact that her visit involved some chemicals with names so long they need hyphens.

She arrived at lunchtime and we had a few pints in The Sun, a postponement for something. Back at mine we had as short a chat with the couchsurfer as I thought we could get away, before we went upstairs to my room. Every step bought a new worry. What will she think of me? Will I conduct myself OK? How I will I put my body? What about the room's decor, the seating arrangements, the provision, or lack, of food? Would everything please her or at least be comfortable?

She walked in and took the comfy chair, as I had hoped. I didn't want to make elaborate efforts with manners. She unwrapped two plastic bags, one containing One Thing and a second containing Another Thing, a chemical whose sesquipedalian name, being far beyond the average bobby's spelling abilities, fortuitously accords immunity from prosecution. She thinned out the lines with a credit card, so as to hurt our noses less, and left everything there on the dresser, open and available. All night, she constantly prompted me, "help yourself". Nevertheless, I kept asking until I realised that doing so was putting a distance between us.

We chatted all night, quite a bit about sex. The talk didn't always flow, but the times when it paused, when I didn't know how far to relax into sensual solipsism or try to raise another subject, were as much a part of becoming close as the times when it did. We were watching each other, trying to get the right balance of attention to make it better for us both.

Sometime during the morning, facing irresisitible somatic evidence of the law of diminishing returns, we agreed not to take any more, and went into town. A drab beer garden and a drink neither of us wanted; two minutes in an exhibition which was too difficult for us, then a sandwich in a cafe, fending off the nausea. She was asking me what we could do. I had no idea, feeling responsible but incapable. Eventually I suggested we go to Morecambe.

On the train a shell-suited young man was swearingly relieving himself of an inarticulate stream of bravado towards a woman sitting opposite him, while a baby crawled over the seat. "If I see him, I'll fucking... I'll fucking... 'cos we're gonna make this work. Right?"

We buttoned up against the wind and walked to the beach. It was high tide; wet liminal sand dried to a wind-blown soft upper margin. Kim indicated a part of it next to the sea wall where we could lay down, and we curled into embryos and went to sleep in the sand.

As I lay down beside her, I looked at her, her hair directly on the sand, sand that was already collecting in little folds of her clothes. Nothing was separate: the sunlight and the wash of wind over my skin, was the same as what I saw; everything was without design and without thinking.

I put my jacket over my head and drifted off. When we woke up we went for fish and chips but I couldn't finish mine, so I gave them to some winos sitting near us. "Are they poisoned?" the winette asked.

Yesterday we had one failed attempt at putting her on the train. Sitting on the platform, the One Thing and The Other Thing started coming up again, for both of us. She asked if she could rest her head on my shoulder, and said "Would it be an imposition looby, if I got the later train, in an hour? I can't cope with the idea of the train yet, and I don't want to be alone." In a pub garden we calmed each other through another phase of symptoms, talking about our time together, inventing its history. We made a laboured return to the station, where we hugged and exchanged heartfelt thanks.

Everything was still very bright. I went to a pub where I knew I wouldn't have to talk to anyone. She texted me from the train. I replied "...Feels odd to be without someone but am self medicating with cider. Have this lovely feeling of mild bliss. Was great Kim. Loved it. Feel better in the progress of my life for it. You're very rare."

I looked at the last sentence again and was irritated with myself for qualifying an absolute adjective, but such are the hazards of narcosequipedalianism.

4 comments

I haven’t delved into One Thing and Another for a long, long time. I kind of miss it this morning but overall I’m glad I don’t think about it much anymore.

Googled narcosesquipedalianism and came up empty handed. Are you inventing a new language?

Thu 21st July 2011 @ 12:03
Comment from: [Member]

I would dabble more to be honest, but if you factor in the fifteen hour sleep required on the second night and the way that on day three funny cat videos are a daunting intellectual challenge, you can end up writing off half the week.

Re narcosesquipedalianism: missing from the list of dangers associated with One Thing and Another - heart attack, respiratory failure, renal failure, psychosis, etc. - is that of causing the user to invent pretentious neologisms in blog posts.

Thu 21st July 2011 @ 12:23
Comment from: Smacked Face [Visitor]

So glad to have found your blog again sir! Good luck with that dabbling… x

Tue 26th July 2011 @ 09:40
Comment from: [Member]

Thank you, and same to you. Rediscovering someone with Acperience was a great way of getting back in online touch.

Tue 26th July 2011 @ 10:44


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