The first time I came to London by myself it was one week after my 19th birthday. I’d made the trip see Otway and Barrett live. It was the 19th of March. The opportunity arose for me to meet up with a girl whose diet consisted, seemingly in its entirety, of Wotsits and milk. I was charmed by this. We’d been speaking on-line, on MSN messenger. We’d met on MySpace when I’d made the effort to send her a very long message explaining that I liked her straw hat and we’d hit it off. We met up at Victoria train station and she sprayed my greasy hair with coconut Batiste on a concrete staircase. We never made it to the show, never made it out of hotel. She was kind to me. I met her parents. I met her dog, who was dying of cancer. That’s when i learned dogs could get cancer. I met her friends, I was awkward around her friends. We saw each other a few more times. In train stations, bus stations, hotel rooms, and bread and breakfasts, toilet cubicles, a field of daffodils beside Three Bridges I’ve never seen again, and Croydon and Carlisle and Regent’s Park where I lay my head on her lap and she squeezed blackheads on my forehead til they popped. Later on we broke each other’s hearts.


that breakup’s gonna stick. it was mutual. it’s over. i’ve felt the relationship leave my body. it was a pleasant breakup, though my eyes are wet and my body is heavy.

what a wonderful person. and memories to be cherished. mexico city, the waterfalls, the pyramids, the summer, the music, the family, the corn. you know all that. it’s all on the blog. i was happier than i’ve ever been, for a while.

it’s strange breaking up on-line. sitting here in my chair, at my desk. using the same computer from which i’ve just done a day of meetings. just another piece of business. another set of carefully crafted words.

we spent valentine’s day together. an hour of it. on the phone. it was lovely, like before. we were right there, next to one another. i could almost touch it. but i couldn’t. we made all sorts of plans together for the future. it felt so easy. when it was over, the hard was all the more clear. all the more definite.

i feel ok. heavy, and sad. i still haven’t opened the tequila we bought together when she was here. next month, maybe. time is an enemy. distance is an enemy. faraway love is a full time occupation.