I’m not sure this is right!

When I met V he used this lightening cream. It’s not that he was ‘black’ black but rather red-based black, meaning he was a lot lighter than a lot of other black people.

I learnt many things about what it is to be black. The creaming every day to stop one’s body from having dry skin, which on most white people is just a bit irritating and, well, white, whereas on black people is, well, white and, therefore, just a tad more noticeable; the attention paid to the hair – using oils and stuff to make it softer, without which it resembles wire wool both to look at and touch.

But, in addition to all the other ‘stuff’ that V used, he used the lightening cream, not wanting to be white, just not wanting to be too black.

Really, of course, it is a type of bleach. I was quite worried about it. I mean, it wasn’t as if I had any problem with his shade of black for that was not what I was looking at. Black people’s skin is beautiful and almost always smooth – but there is a price to pay – this whitening cream seemed a little too much of a price to pay. Bleach, even in small doses, I reasoned, could not possibly be good for the skin, for you, if applied every day.

And so, I applied my reasoning to him, wanting him to be happy but not to have problems later in his life, which is what I thought should happen. And if he applied it after shaving, it burnt him. Now that can’t be good, I thought.

And, so, he stopped using it after I had suggested it could not possibly be good for him and explaining why I thought this.

There is a product, currently on sale here, that is aimed at men. It seems to be advertised everywhere. It reminds me of the old wild west of America when coke and tomato sauce were invented and initially promised great things in terms of health before being seen as the confectionery they actually are and with no significant health-giving properties. I mean, coke cleans up dirty old coins – how good can it really be for your stomach! Although, as we all know, a coke and a bag of crisps (for the salt) are brilliant when, say, travelling in Egypt to avoid or cure the ‘holiday tummy’ problem one often finds.

But back to this product. It is a cream. This cream will, apparently, reduce your bulbous stomach – a way of slimming, simply by applying the cream every day.

F is not stupid but sometimes seems a little too hopeful. He does have a slight stomach, that, actually, I find very sexy. I don’t know why, it’s really not like me at all!

However, he promises me it only came on after last year’s summer holiday in his home town, when he ate and drank far too much. Mainly ate though as he stayed with his parents and, so he says, his Mum cooks – a LOT.

But now he wants to get rid of it. I say he should leave it – but to no avail.  He does the dieting bit from time to time but it is a little difficult for him. He likes his beer too much – and his food! So dieting is out really.

And now he’s found the cream. “But is it working?”, I ask. He replies that he doubts it but it doesn’t stop him putting it on each night, rubbing it over the stomach and, like the lottery, hoping that he is the one person that wins, against the odds.

Last night I got in to his flat. He is ‘fanning himself’ with his hands. It is hot – but as I mentioned in the last post, cooler now. But he is very hot and there’s a reason. the cream of this miracle product is burning!

“It can’t be good if it is burning”, I say, trying to be gentle about the fact that, if it were me, I would stop immediately.

“No, it’s OK”, he replies in the standard way that he does – at least to me.

“But”, I say, trying to be a little more forceful, “I am sure it’s not supposed to burn when you use it!”

“Don’t say that”, he replies, “else I shall be worried about it”.

I laugh but hope that he is right and gives it some thought. It cannot be right. The motto ‘No pain, no gain’ is right but surely not for something that you rub on your stomach?

He’s not the only man in Italy using it. I know of several other people that are trying this out. Hmmm. Still, it can’t be right, can it?

Logic – not something everyone can get to grips with!

There is a cooling breeze coming through the open window.  It is, in spite of my adoration of the heat here, most welcome.

For days, now, the temperature during the day has been reaching the mid-thirties (Celsius) and my body has been, as they say of ladies, glowing!  But, glowing profusely.  A shower offers welcome respite for all of 2 minutes. I try not to move much. Certainly, I ‘do’ as little as possible.

But, last night we had a storm. I truly love these summer storms. The cloud cover, us being in the city, is not black and gloomy but rather bright and orange. The lightening, whether sheet or forked, is a wonder. We never had these type of storms in the UK – well, rarely. With it (but this is not always so) came rain. Probably less than half an hour but refreshing, nonetheless. With it also came wind, the only problem being that I had to shut windows and/or shutters, thus depriving the house from the real cooling effect it gave. Even so, the wind was not really cold – just cooler.

We were going to go to F’s flat – but the rain meant we were delayed. I had been mindful of the fact that F has not been sleeping well. The heat (which he hates), the dogs, my snoring and, of course, not least, work – now that he is working 6 days per week. Saturday night we had stayed at mine. The heat, during the night, imperceptibly different from the day-time heat. Even a sheet on top of you is almost too much to bear – and so, usually the sheet is thrown to one side.

I wake up, during the night. F has a headache and will I get him an aspirin. I do. Then he decides to move to the bottom of the bed, lying across the bottom of the bed at 90° to me (and the normal way of sleeping) – this allows him to have his head closest to the open window, trying to catch the slightest wisp of moving air, which is rare and, in any case, is as warm as having none.

I had promised to get down the fan. And, given the night he had had, I did get it down on Sunday, whilst he was at work. I plugged it in, making sure it was working and positioned to give the maximum of benefit for when we are in bed.

But, in any event, last night he finished really late and so, as I expected, we (the dogs and I) went round to his place.

As we are lying in bed, the breeze was really fantastic. As I said, not really cold – just cooler but enough so that I got under the sheet, covering my bare shoulders.

“I got the fan down, so we can have that at my house”, I said, pleased with myself that I had, at long last, done something to make him more comfortable.

“I have a fan too”, he said, adding, “but I can’t have it on during the night, otherwise I will get a stiff neck”.

I am glad it is dark. I am glad that I don’t laugh out loud. What I want to say is:
“But you have the window open at night – including tonight, when the air is cool – how can that be different from having a fan going?”

Apparently it is different.

Sometimes, the logic defies reason.

Twins and Exes

This week may be interesting.

First, I get to meet some of the family. The twin brother, in fact. Plus wife, who is, apparently, just a little younger than me and means, of course, the chances of children are slim. They are coming to Milan to go to a Pat Metheney concert with us and, I guess, will stay over at F’s flat whilst he stays at mine.

His brother, apparently, knows about F being gay. I’m not sure whether he’s the only family member but I think F’s sister knows as well. And, anyway, once you tell one it soon spreads, so, probably, everyone knows. I don’t think anyone knows about me, as such. F is quite funny like that.

It will be interesting. I’ve never known so many people who are one of a twin as I do here! F’s twin has to be different from him and I think I’ve seen a picture once.

Then, later in the week, I will probably get to meet the last boyfriend. He has shops in Rome and comes up for the showroom sales (which are on now). Apparently, he will stay at F’s flat and we shall go out for a meal. I’m not sure where F will stay. He says that he usually stays and that there is no sex involved. I’m not sure why he tells me this. I didn’t think there would be. And, anyway, I trust him.

M (F’s Ex) was the one who said ‘I love you, I love you’ for six months and then, one morning, got up and said it was all over. It all made F a bit wary and he didn’t understand why it changed overnight. I don’t think he does now. M, in fact, suggested a holiday on an island off Africa somewhere. It was to include both of us. He knows about me. In the end there weren’t enough takers so the holiday was off. Anyway, I couldn’t have afforded it. And then there were the ‘babies’ to think of.

In any event, two important people will be coming – important to F and, therefore, important to me. It should, as I said, be interesting.