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Hayley fucks a fish importer

  Wed 10th July 2019

It's midnight. I've been at work, day nine of eleven on the trot (I said ten earlier but I volunteered for Thursday), then down the pub. Back here, the landlady has just done a histrionic piss, closing the toilet door with sufficient loudness to serve as a message to me that I must go to bed unshowered.

I stayed at Hayley's the other night. We lost the speed somehow in passing it back and forth underneath the table in the pub garden, concealing it from the man we were with. He works for an environmental charity. He let me buy three rounds to his one. I don't mind buying Hayley's. She's in the same financial boat as me, with greater problems to deal with, but many middle class people guard their money carefully, and conflate poverty and moral failure.

He was giving Hayley that little back rub that sexless left-wing men give women they are too timid to approach directly. He'd got the impression that he was staying at hers, and there was this awkward stand off as we were walking back and had to part ways, with Hayley mollifying him by saying that he could come round another night. I disliked him because I recognised myself in him.

She told me about her Saturday night, when I was too tired to come out, which ended up with her fucking the fish importer and crack dealer whom we met the other weekend. The latter occupation is true and "fish importer" is too unlikely a tale to be made up. He's articulate and cultured.

I had to get up at 5am to get to work. It's a delicious companionship, sleeping with Hayley, curling our legs together, me safe from any of the corrosive, wearing, draining feelings that I had for Wendy. I want my body to be next to hers. I want to be touched, stroked, kissed, slept with, with someone I like. And I like Hayley. Hayley, unlike Wendy, comes at no cost.

She's been through such a lot, at the hands of members of my often horrible sex. Her £400 / month bedsit is a converted corridor and a tiny extension for a bedroom. Most of the floor is bare concrete. She had to lean over me in the middle of the night to put the electric heater on. I felt such compassion and tenderness for her as I kissed her sleepy head when I got up and said goodbye.

Now that I've got work sorted out, I want to get us a nice flat together. I want to make her life better, and mine too. Somewhere stable, pretty, with her art everywhere, with paintings and objets trouvées, and the better class of drug users coming round. We've got to save up a grand each, since the rent and the deposit will come to something like 2K. We'll do it though, and in the meantime, having seen the Rachmanite bedsit in which she lives, I'll offer her a place in the bedsit I might be getting. I now feel selfish and unkind to want to have it to myself.

Read something I liked in the LRB this morning. French filmmaker Jean-Pierre Melville: "I love the fact that effort is useless. Climbing towards failure is an altogther human thing."


Comment from: Scarlet [Visitor]

Good luck, I hope you raise the cash for a deposit.

I hate it when I dislike someone because they remind me of me.

Wed 10th July 2019 @ 12:10 Reply to this comment
Comment from: [Member]

Yes – although I suppose come to think about it it more me several years ago. I try not to make any effort at all with women now. That can sometimes work better.

And thank you – we should be able to raise it, if we both stick with these jobs (she works in a hotel). I don’t trust myself to last very long in any employment though. This is my third job in Bristol and I haven’t been here a year yet.

Wed 10th July 2019 @ 22:14 Reply to this comment

This stuff is just incredible. Sometimes I go back to the start of a paragraph and reread it. The only difference between your writing and Céline or Bukowski is the want of a publisher.

I swear, if I had the cash for the deposit I’d send it to you. I’m very, very happy to see the sordid Wendy business behind you.

Thu 11th July 2019 @ 11:55 Reply to this comment
Comment from: Looby [Visitor]

Thank you, that’s excessively kind of you. I’m not sure it’s in that league but the real job now is to package it and flog it.

But not in the next couple of weeks. I’m off to Brittany this morning with Kirsty and the girls.

Sun 14th July 2019 @ 08:02 Reply to this comment
Comment from: daisyfae [Visitor]

Good to see you working toward a goal - and i hope it works out. You and Hayley seem to have a good alignment.

Sun 14th July 2019 @ 22:24 Reply to this comment
Comment from: Looby [Visitor]

Thank you DF and hello from a sunny morning in France. Yes it’s good to have a plan, although I’m not sure about the feckless on off boyfriend coming with us. But not worrying about that first the time being. There’s a holiday to be had :)

Mon 15th July 2019 @ 08:25 Reply to this comment

Well, there’s me just back from my jollies to see you’re off on yours! Have fun in Little Britain - at least you’ve swerved the hotter than hell heatwave. I’m sure you’ll have more than a few stories to share (with us) on your return :-D

Mon 15th July 2019 @ 21:02 Reply to this comment
Comment from: Looby [Visitor]

Hello Lass! Hope you had a jolly time on your hols. We’re having a grand time here, cultural in a broad sense. Another 1.5 weeks left too. All the best from southern Brittany.

Wed 17th July 2019 @ 22:45 Reply to this comment
Comment from: Eryl Gasper-Dick [Visitor]

Blimey, things have changed since I last looked in, you sound happy! I really hope you manage to save the deposit, and hang on to both the job and Hayley.

Sun 21st July 2019 @ 17:06 Reply to this comment
Comment from: Looby [Visitor]

Hello Eryl, from a very sunny Brittany where the croissants are buttery and the cider is cidery. Things are going well – as friends – with Hatley. Still got another week out here. I’m spending a lot of my time with the Patrick Melrose novels. Golly! What writing. Till soon.

Mon 22nd July 2019 @ 08:56 Reply to this comment
Comment from: Jonathan [Visitor]

Looby..really glad to see things coming together for you here, by God you deserve a break or two. Hayley and you sound like you understand each other and want each other to be happy. Which has to be a good start.

Mr exile is right about your deserved place in the literary canon also by the way. But you know I think that.

I’ve got a good feeling your various plans (including that literary one) are slowly but surely maturing to delicious fruition like the good Breton cider you’re probably drinking right now. 2019 could be your vintage year!

Wed 24th July 2019 @ 23:03 Reply to this comment
Comment from: Looby [Visitor]

Thank you J, that’s very kind of you. I feel hopeful that me and Hayley can work something out. I’m quite surprised and relieved to find myself not, at this moment anyway, falling for her in that way that has caused agonies and tears and wretchedness in the past. I only want to have good problems with Hayley, like where to go out dancing . And, thinking in the shorter term, at what point this morning to open the cider you correctly guess is my staple beverage. Thanks again.

Thu 25th July 2019 @ 08:20 Reply to this comment

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