I read a quote the other day. It went like this
“Maybe it’s just hiding somewhere. Or gone on a trip to come home. But falling in love is always a pretty crazy thing. It might appear out of the blue and just grab you. Who knows — maybe even tomorrow.”
― Haruki Murakami, Sputnik
Every now and again if you are very lucky there will be moments in life that will in years to come define the very person you are or way that you see the world.
I had that moment this weekend. An unexpectedly exquisite stumble into feelings that I think if I am honest, had forgotten existed. I understand what they say in the movies now, about electricity between two people, the moment your casual glances meet and almost as though fate is sealed, it’s just up to you to do with that moment the best you can.
Weddings are always tough for me, I adore that I am involved in someone’s life moment, I am always an enthusiastic hymn singer and will happily dance to the jitter bug. However, the cynic in me thinks that the world has become obsessed with the wedding and dismissive about the marriage. I unfortunately therefore rarely enjoy them. But this wedding was more than that. It wasn’t a distant cousin I don’t really remember sharing Lego with, it was a friend I have known since we were 9, I have been a part of his family, his mum and my mum adore each other, his dad is the kindest man I know, I’ve watched his amazing little brothers and sister grow into incredible individuals. So this wedding was a special one.
On a summers day, in a tiny church in Kent, one space free next to me on the pew and in he walked, grey 3 piece suit, baby boy features and in he sidled next to me, introduced himself and the rest as they say is history.
Watching Mark, the groom, turn to watch his soon to be wife, Sophy, walk into the simply decorated church, arm linked with her dad, I realised that despite all the people watching, that moment all he saw in the world was Sophy. She, as all brides do, looked beautiful, they giggled through vows, starring into each other eyes, listened to people who love them recite readings of love and hope for the future. It could not have been a more quintessential British summer wedding if it had tried.
The party was at the brides parents house, a beautiful farm house, surrounded by an orchard, the marquee was dressed in black white and green, the amazing drinks tent with home made ginger beer and pink lemonade, kids running around, adults getting slightly tipsy in the August sunshine.
Having not seen Mr 3 piece suit for a while I had been commandeered by a very brash but hilarious Texan called Ash, whose hobbies he informed me include “shooting shit, drinking expensive champagne and dancing like a mother f**ker” so he and I drank champagne, talked about politics then danced like lunatics to the Arctic Monkeys, Bon Jovi & various other perfectly picked songs.
And then Joshua Radin “I’d rather be with you” came on as if from no where Mr 3 piece suit appeared on the dance floor, equipped with a huge grin on his face and a beckoning finger, urging me to dance with him. His jacket discarded now and his red silk tie a little looser around his neck, we danced together my hand in his, he spun me around, mouthed the words to the song to me, these words
“I need to be bold
Need to jump in the cold water
Need to grow older with a girl like you
Finally see you were naturally
The one to make it so easy when you showed me the truth
Yeah, yeah I’d rather be with you
Say you want the same thing too”
Now I have to tell you at this point it’s very hard for me to write all of this down, but I made a vow 4 months ago that this blog would be nothing but honesty, and so even though it’s making me feel a little funny, it’s honest and my life. If I am truthful I don’t think that I would have even noticed Mr 3 piece suit before I had been away, I’m fairly sure I would have thought he was gorgeous, then began the mental beat up of myself, listing the reasons that he would never look twice at me. But this time was different, he had looked twice and as we danced he was smiling at me like I haven’t been smiled at in a very long time.
His life, as all of ours are, is slightly complicated. But we decided that just for 24 hours not to think about the things at home, not to seek anything past the end of the weekend. I realised that I spend so much of my life looking for the future, wanting to be grown up, new job, home of my own, nice holidays, that I have been missing my life, missing the moments like this, in the arms of a great guy laughing and carefree.
We went our separate way for a while I danced with the grooms little brother, who at 17 is 6ft 1 and was at this point quite drunk, then the grooms grand father, we danced, laughed and drank. We watched on as the new Mr&Mrs smile at each other whilst wearing pink wellies and dancing under the star lit sky.
And so for me the end of the evening approached, mum and I heading back to the faulty towers type b&b we were staying in. Mr 3 piece no where to be seen as we said out goodbyes, then as I walked away from the marque, a firm hand grabbed me, spun me round, and suddenly he kissed me, full on Hollywood style, and asked me to stay. Now, in steps my stupid stubborn side. No, that was my answer, this wonderful guy asking me to stay, but rather than be brave and see where the evening might take me, I walked away. I did look over my shoulder and he looked like a puppy I was abandoning. The drive to the b&b was quiet, but once in our room I realised I had made a shitty decision. Quickly changed out of the dress I was in, on went the jeans and white shirt and a taxi was called. I realised that I could go back and just be brave, maybe nothing would happen, maybe he would have left, found someone else to sweep off her feet. But I realised that I had to try, isn’t that what life is about, taking a leap and hoping to god you can fly.
I had butterflies the whole way back to the wedding, nervously arrived back at the marquee.
Greeted by the groom, by this point in a straw boating hat, white heather boa and pink wellies, he grabbed hold of me, squeezed me and said. ” thank god you’re back, he’s sulking in the orchard” so with that I grabbed a bottle of the home made raspberry vodka and went on a man hunt. And as the groom had rightly described sitting at the end of the orchard on a picnic bench was Mr 3 piece, nursing a bottle of brandy.
Now I’m not one for big dramatic romantic moments, so I am going to make the most of this one, he saw me, and I have actually never seen anyone smile like that towards me, it was like I had made his day by reappearing. Up he stood, walked towards me and picked me up off my feet to hug me and said “you’re even more perfect in jeans”
Now the rest of the evening is some what of a blur and I don’t want to give away all of my secrets but let’s just say, there was lots of alcohol consumed, we danced until 3 am under the stars and ended the night sharing a very small tent.
I would be lying to you all if I said that leaving in the morning was a nice feeling so I slipt out as he slept, a note next to him that simply said “thank you, more than you will ever m know” no number was left, this perfectly magical time was just that, a moment in time, something that I think if I ever tried to make more of would become dulled. The moment would be weakened by real life I fear.
And he won’t ever really know what he did for me, to have a renewal of faith in love, a real moment of realisation that I won’t be alone forever, that I am good enough to make a man smile eat to ear.
Whist curled up in the car on the journey home, feeling like my hangover might drag me into the seventh circle of hell, I realised the Jaegermeister shot drinking completion at 2am had finally caught up with me, a memory flashed into my mind, the last words he said before falling asleep….
“I’m not sure after meeting you life will ever be the same”
And you know what, I agree, it never will.