Isn't it funny how kind people can be! I don't know but I never expect anything and then when people show how kind they can be it always surprises me. Not making much sense am I! I'm not sure I know how to explain this but I am a bit of a loner. I don't even know if I have always been this way or if my god-awful marriage made me that way. I mean, if you keep people out they can't hurt you can they! For me being divorced I'm adamant that I will never live with someone again and I will definitely never get married again and that, in a way, makes me sad as there are so many good people out there. I just don't think I can take that constant, chaotic, brain-destroying crap again. Anyway that's my choice and I at least have the possibility to make that decision. I know you should never say "never again" but I'm pretty sure that's it for me. That being said, it's been kind of weird this past week or so how friends just seem to have appeared out of nowhere!
When I went to Sicily in September I palled up with a lady called Carol. On these "solos" holidays you always seem to hit it off with someone (in my case usually the first person at the bar I guess) but Carol has called me a couple of times and I have enjoyed chatting with her. I told her to let me get my Sri Lanka trip out of the way and my son's civil wedding in March and then she was more than welcome to come out here and stay with me. Now she lives near Gatwick airport and has told me I am more than welcome at her place any time. So another thing on my bucket list!
Then yesterday I got a message from Karon who I had met in St. Lucia two years ago. We hit it off like nobody's business but of course when you don't live in the same country and don't see each other regularly things tend to fade. She asked me if I had ever done a solo trip but not through a solos organization. Well I'm not sure what she meant exactly but I told her I had done one totally solo trip to Morocco but that I didn't enjoy it that much as I like company. I was in Marrakech, which I loved but also travelled to the Atlas mountains, where those two young Scandinavian girls had recently been murdered!!! So, for myself, while I love my trips, I enjoy them more when I have company. I don't have to know anyone ahead of time - I just want to be sure that I won't be alone. In fact Costa Rica this year was with a travel group that wasn't solos-oriented but there were only six of us on the trip and it was a blast! Anyway, Karon and I decided that we should get together. I invited her out here and she said if I wanted to come "her way" I would be more than welcome and maybe we could invite Mo. It was weird really because after that trip I know six of them went off to Spain together and I told her that while I liked everyone on that trip it was only her and Mo that I would like to keep in touch with. So you know what, I hope she does come out here and I will definitely make the effort to spend more time in the UK and catch up with her and Mo.
Then back in 2010, after my husband had buggered off, I met Brian on my first solos trip and we have stayed in touch ever since 2010. Actually he has been out here twice and never, ever forgets my birthday and always sends me a Christmas card. He is an absolute gent. There was nothing "untoward" in that relationship, just another good friendship! Then I met Steve on my trip to Peru and we have stayed friends ever since. He, also, has been out here twice and I stayed with him in August of 2018. Maybe there is something wrong with me - why do I have to go finding friends so far away? Well actually I'm not totally anti-social to be honest but I guess, over time, I do crave the Brit sense of humour and so tend to look that way for friendship, although I have dear, dear friends here in France of course! I guess the problem is (a) the language, although I am fluent in French of course, but (b) I really, really love the British sense of humour. It is so totally different to the French (or any other sense of humour I guess)! Not better or worse, just different! Anyway, on our first night in Lima an ambulance went past and somebody cracked the "Eric Morecambe" joke and we all roared laughing!
Then yesterday I got a message from Marilyn, a dear friend from ages ago. We met when my ex and I moved into France in 1990. Marilyn is American and her husband was French so we instantly hit it off. Our kids were about the same age so we used to go skiing together and socialize. About 20 years ago they moved down to Chambéry and from there on to the US where her husband had been head-hunted. Only problem was, the day the moving company showed up to pack their stuff, Philippe was told that his job offer was rescinded! It was a cut-throat business and par for the course I guess. So that left her with a French husband already installed in the US without a green card but relying on his job to get one. She was a stay-at-home mom so not much use in that direction. So no green card, no medical insurance and what the hell do you do next!!!! In the end Philippe got another job, Marilyn also, and they made it but the stress must have been horrendous. Sadly Philippe got sick, ended up having a liver transplant, had a heart attack, I believe, and died about five years ago. In the meantime, her daughter married and moved to London and her son was transferred to Cork in Ireland so, as a newly-minted French national, she followed her son out to Ireland. She's not particularly happy there. "If you like baked beans you're well set" as while the people are lovely it's not exactly Dublin is it! Anyway she got in touch with me yesterday and we are going to meet up. Either I will go to Ireland or she will come here. So I guess I do make friends really, just not exactly "pop next door type"!
And finally, my lovely Dutchman and I finally got to see Bohemian Rhapsody yesterday. I wanted to wait a few weeks (four I think) after it came out so it wouldn't be so crowded but yet again the cinema was virtually full! To say we loved it would be an understatement! At one point I became aware of C blubbing and had to go fishing for paper hankies in my bag as he was starting to drip. But by gosh that was a lovely film. I really hope Rami Malek wins an oscar for his performance (the buck teeth not withstanding) as he was brilliant. Actually I can't believe he is 37 - he looks about 17 - but I saw him interviewed on the Graham Norton show and what a lovely young man he is! Good luck Rami!