Someone’s Day

It’s always someone’s day and today it’s Mother’s Day (in the UK).

Today is the day when you think of your mother or remember your mother or give her a call or a card or a present or all these things.

A mother gives birth to you and then brings you up, sacrificing many things for you. Loving you beyond reason. Looking after you; being there when you need someone and everyone else has let you down or worse. Someone who loved you whatever. She would be so proud of your successes. Would support you when there were failures. Would just “be there”.

I read about them. Mothers. How there is some special bond between them and their children. How people miss them when they’re gone. How much they love them when they are alive.

I always wanted a mother.

I mean, physically, I had one, obviously. And I lived with that woman for the first eighteen years of my life. I understand other people’s relationship to their mothers. To a point. But, of course, without that, one can’t fully understand and so I understand and, yet, don’t understand. I see it but I see it from outside – like a kid looking in the window of a sweet shop but who can’t get in. You understand the sweets are nice and, well, sweet but, having never tasted one, how can you really know the sensation of eating one?

Of course, I could ring V’s mum – who always treated me like her son and would tell everyone that I was – even if that was impossible. But I won’t since that seems too presumptive and intrusive. After all, she didn’t give birth to me and didn’t raise me for the first eighteen years of my life. She met me when I was 30. And, in spite of the fact that she was always sweet and lovely to me, we don’t have that special bond that can only be with a mother. I always thought she was just saying that, to make me feel better. Which it did as I realised the niceness of it.

So, I won’t be phoning the woman who would be known as my mother. She’s quite vindictive and hateful. For most of my life, she hasn’t been there. She’s a shadowy figure best forgotten.

And some of you will think that’s sad. But that’s because you have a mother that isn’t/wasn’t like that. You had someone you loved deeply and who loved you back. Therefore your feeling of sadness comes from the fact that you didn’t have the a mother like I did. And, for that you should be grateful. And there may be those of you who never knew your mother. And perhaps you feel that I should be more conciliatory. But, then, you never knew the woman who gave birth to me. We can never really walk in someone else’s shoes. Never experience their experiences for we are all unique. And all mothers are unique, even if you never knew them.

So, I say happy Mother’s Day to all mothers who are/were truly mothers. But for one, I can’t say that.

It WAS all damned lies, as I thought

I don’t know how I feel.

I mean, the feelings are all a little mixed up.

There’s a feeling of anger but it’s not so strong.

There’s a feeling of sadness. Not for anything that was “missed”, since it wasn’t. For the people involved, I suppose.

There’s a feeling of relief. After all, there’s now no way that I will be found, nor even looked for. And there’s a kind of finality, an ending, a closing off. A closure.

And, there’s a feeling of hate, of course, for certain of those people involved. Hate is not a good feeling but it’s not something I can stop. But, to be honest, I expected nothing better from the females.

It would have been better, of course, if, as I had expected, my name was not even mentioned. But it was and that was to be specifically excluded. Other people who, perhaps, should have been mentioned and who I expected to be mentioned, weren’t. That was unexpected. But, still, they weren’t specifically excluded. But I was. Well, of course, it was my fault for even wanting to see it, I suppose.

Well, there’s nothing I can do about it now and I wouldn’t have done anything about it even if I had known it would make a difference. Not that I expect that it would have made any difference. Then or before.

But, I suppose what gets me the most is the lies. The lies from all those years ago and from the time when I gave someone a chance – but who was lying all the time. Still, that’s sales people for you. It’s what they do. Lie.

And, yes, it smarts a little. But not really a lot.

After all, it’s reciprocal.

And all these feelings will pass and I’ll be back to the same and at least now I know and it’s exactly, more or less, as I thought. Except for one thing. There is no future (for this thing). There’ll be no surprising call or message asking for a last meeting or anything. Something that had been worrying me a bit since I couldn’t work out what my response would be. Well, now I know.

And, I also know there was no feeling for me and that’s OK. In fact, that’s better for there was none from me either.

But, still, the hand-written addition, excluding only me. Their final message to me. But, at least it’s final and done now.

And time to get on with my life.

A concert, the weather and the dreaded Visit.

Well, I managed to book for Kate Bush ….. eventually.

Not the date we wanted, nor, even, at a weekend but at least I got some. I saw her on her first (and only) tour back in 1979 (in Manchester) and I remember it quite well. It was an amazing concert. Obviously, this one won’t be so “energetic” but I imagine she’ll do a good show in any event.

I have been so busy of late. So much so that this weekend will be a relaxing weekend. The temperatures should be in the 20s (°C) and it should be sunny – so that means a walk with the dogs, at least.

Of course, there’s the nagging thing about “The Visit”. That hasn’t gone away. The list is quite long now, which is to be expected. Few people know about it, which is the best thing.

Of course, it’s unlikely to be just this one. I’m expecting some other “visits” will have to follow. It’s almost like I shall be “sucked into” this thing. Like getting stuck in whirlpool – going further and further down, getting completely caught up in rounds of “visits”. I’ve avoided all this, so far.

Other things are being “sorted” but much more needs to be done before everything is ready. Still, one thing at a time, eh?

Update: And, apparently, I was lucky to get any tickets!

Believe the headline and become stupid.

The overall stupidity of people, although expected, shocks me still.

In the UK you can make a will. Normally you make it with a solicitor although you can make it on your own, as long as a witness (or, maybe two) sign it.

The will determines who/what you wish to leave all your assets to when you die.

A married couple will, normally, elect to leave their assets to their spouse. They might also leave something to their children. A lone parent may choose to leave their assets, equally divided, to their children.

Or, of course, they may not.

Some people choose to leave their assets to a charity. Or to someone who isn’t a relative. Or to only one of their children.

In other words, British people can choose who to leave their assets to – there are no rules but the will must be legally binding.

People who think that they SHOULD have been included in the will can, of course, contest it in court. But it has to be proved that the person making the will made a mistake or was unduly coerced by a beneficiary. This is only worth it when there is a lot of money at stake. Most ordinary wills are not contested.

For example, I doubt very much if my mother has included me in her will. And I very much doubt that, even if it were worth millions, I would be able to successfully contest it since we haven’t had any contact for over 25 years. I could hardly claim that I had a right to a share, could I?

Of course, some Christian principle may encourage her to leave me something. Or, from what I read, if she were Muslim, she would be expected to leave a share to me and exclude my sister. It wouldn’t seem fair but, then, wills aren’t meant to be “fair”. They are meant to express the wishes of the deceased.

So, I read today, in the DailyHate Mail, of a very rich guy who will not be leaving anything to his son!

Now, whilst not being a fan of that newspaper, it is seen as being an OK thing to do since he is saying that his son has to work for his money (and that’s OK according to the right-wing press).

And, yet, in the same paper, yesterday, was a story about how solicitors have been issued guidelines to help them when they are writing wills for Muslims.

This is because, according to their religion, there are “rules” that are meant to apply when someone dies. Of course, without a will, British law would apply. These guidelines are to help solicitors help their Muslim clients to draw up a will that is within British law but that follow the rules of their religion.

Unfortunately, these rules seem to be known as Sharia Law. And so, the headline leads people to believe that “Sharia Law” is being built into British law.

Which is just plain wrong and totally misleading.

And makes the people “shouting” about how terrible it is that “Sharia Law is being enshrined into British Law” seem really stupid.

And, to be honest, THAT really annoys me.

The Visit is booked.

Well, it’s been done now.

Or, rather, booked.

And, even though it’s over a week away, it is, kinda, scaring the shit out of me.

Which is stupid, I know, but that’s the way it is.

Of course, I have a list of things to talk about given that’s it’s over 15 years since I last paid a visit. And it’s the list that’s been growing in all those years.

And, then, of course, she’ll be Italian with all these weird, Italian beliefs.

And she’ll want me to do things that I don’t want to do (apart from the obvious things, I mean, that I won’t do anyway).

And I suppose most of the things on my list are, well, more or less, nothing. But you never know. One of them might actually be SOMETHING. And I would prefer if none of them were anything at all. But it isn’t as if I am 20.

I’ve thought about writing the list down. So I don’t forget. Or, rather, so I don’t clam up and am unable to remember any of them at the time that I’m there. Or after I mention the first one.

And, anyway, what’s the most important? How do I prioritise them?

And, of course, there’s one that I just might not mention.

I know I should but I’m not sure that I’m ready. At least, not this time. Maybe next time? If there’s a next time.

Of course, there has to be a first time.

And just because it’s booked doesn’t mean ……….

Well, you know what I mean.

But i must try to overcome this resistance. This internal resistance.

I mean, sooner or later, it has to be done, doesn’t it?

Or, does it?

Well, let’s see how I feel next week.

Maybe I’ll feel better about it?

Although I doubt it, to be honest.

It’s just an ordeal.

To be gone through.

To be suffered.

I guess I’ll suffer, then.


Difficult, 14 and gay? Don’t let the story get in the way of the headline.

Yesterday evening, I spent a few hours with the lovely Lola and, at one point we were discussing how misogynous Italy is and lamenting that Italy hadn’t really entered the 21st Century.

Talking of which, there was an “interesting”* conversation at lunchtime between some male colleagues that went something like this:

Colleague A: I took my daughter to volleyball practice
Colleague B: And I imagine you enjoyed watching all the girls
Colleague A: But they’re only 13 so not really. It would be different if they were 18.

OK, really, it wasn’t said like this but near enough. All I could think was – but they are the same age as your daughter! So this is almost like incestuous desire!!!!!

And, here’s another thing that makes Italy just a little bit “backward”.

Of course, if you read it carefully, it does seem like the foster parents were trying (and not quite as the headline suggests, packing him off as soon as they knew) and only “gave up” because a) it became very difficult and b) everyone “asked” them why they were bothering.

I would like more background on this story. I’m wondering if the real problem is not that he was gay, per se, but, rather that life with a 14-year-old was too difficult or whether peer pressure played a part. Let’s be honest here, a 14-year-old is quite a handful. A troubled 14-year-old, more so!

Or, even, if they were being “bullied” by other parents?

In any event, my heart goes out to the kid who has obviously not had it easy whichever way you put it. I know what it’s like to be certain of your sexuality at that age. The difference is that I never told anyone and kept that secret for almost another 5 years!

* And, by interesting I mean disgusting

And there’s another thing ……..

The weather, at the moment, is lovely. During the day it’s been getting up to the mid-20s (°C) and the sun has been shining.

Until about the week before last it had seemed like it had rained since before Christmas, non-stop.

As you may know, cold, wet weather is not my thing. I like hot and dry and with the sun shining.

And, being British, I am used to people complaining about the weather, particularly when it is cold and wet. Interestingly enough, the Italians have also been complaining about the weather.

And, now that the cold, wet part is over for now, they have continued complaining – about it being too hot!!!!

I keep saying that it is not too hot but it makes no difference. It’s too hot, too hot for the time of year, or something similar.

So, the fact that it was cold and wet for months and months is all forgotten.

There’s just no pleasing some people!

p.s. and this includes F, who was, in fact, the first Italian who said it was too hot and has continued to say it!

Occasionally, Italians are REALLY annoying!

As I have mentioned before, I quite like food.

OK, so that’s an understatement. I bloody LOVE food. I mean L. O. V. E. it. Especially food that is bad for you although I also like food that is good for you, I suppose (I like vegetables and stuff).

Coming to Italy, one would think then, was really just the perfect place for me. And it is, in many, many ways.

But, as I have probably mentioned countless times, the Italians, themselves (with notable exceptions such as F, Lola, etc.) are so SMALL-MINDED when it comes to food. In fact, over the last few days, I have become quite incensed about it. So much so that this morning, when I brought flapjacks in for my colleague, S, to taste (and many thanks to Amy for reminding me about the fact that flapjacks are made with Golden Syrup), when she said that she loved them and wanted the recipe, I had my little say about Italians always complaining how nowhere else can do food properly and that it wasn’t true as can be proved by some of the things that I make and that Italians like.

And the reason I was so uptight about this was some random article about foods you SHOULD NOT ask for in Italy.

One of the things was an Hawaiian Pizza (boiled ham with pineapple as a pizza topping). The article was certain that none of the foods mentioned were available in Italy. I pointed out, quite rightly, that I have had this pizza in a couple of places in Milan (and, with fresh pineapple rather than the tinned variety and really top-quality ham it is NOT the same as any I’ve had in the UK but a million, zillion times better).

But Italians will be so effing conservative when it comes to food! So I’ve had many comments railing against such a thing and saying that this is done only for the tourists (when I specifically pointed out that these pizzerias were NOT in any tourist area!) and that Milan is not a typical Italian city. The most stupid thing is that they think it is horrible – without even tasting it! And yet a fishy mayonnaise sauce is the perfect topping when spread over a thin slice of veal!!! And Melon goes with cured ham. Or figs.

They just close their minds to tasting something new without some preconceived ideas about what is right and wrong. In fact, if it wasn’t invented in Italy then it’s obviously wrong.

Sorry (Lola), but they’re just plain wrong!

And it makes me just a little irritated, to be honest.


Tony Benn – remembering my parents!

When I was a kid, my parents rarely talked politics.

Or, there again, maybe they did but I just didn’t notice or ignored it.

I knew my maternal grandmother was a Liberal (of the old-fashioned Liberals) as she was a councillor on the local town council.

I knew, somehow, that my parents were Conservative.

And, the one thing I DO remember, was there utter hatred of a Labour guy – Tony Benn or, as I think he was known then, Anthony Wedgwood Benn. He was, I think, in their terms, bordering on evil.

I couldn’t understand it. I didn’t take any real interest in politics but I failed to understand how you could hate someone because of their beliefs and the words that they used.

Of course, one must remember that I was a very rebellious child. And the effect of them disliking something or someone tended to mean that I would be more open to that thing or that someone. On the contrary, the things that they did were so odious to me that, as an adult, these are things I don’t like to do. And so, things like packed lunches for when you go somewhere; carrying a lot of stuff with you all of the time – to the beach, in particular, are some examples.

In fact, I’ve listened to Tony Benn a number of times and, whilst not always or fully agreeing with his point of view, I can’t knock him for his right to have those views nor for his conviction in them, nor even for the intelligent way he would argue his case. Hate him? Certainly not.

And today he has died and tributes are pouring in (as they do). And I wondered, for a moment, if my mother had any thoughts on this (my father having died already)?

Still, that moment has now passed.

Without the drinking!

There used to be this thing.

I went out and got very, very drunk.

The next day, I was would worry about what I had said or done whilst I was drunk.

Maybe it’s happened to you too? (No, not you, Lola as I don’t think you’ve ever been THAT drunk.)

Anyway, I think (hope) it was a kind of “normal” thing.

But that’s stopped now. Well, for one thing, I don’t really do “let’s get plastered” any more.

However, now this thing happens more often – even when I haven’t been drunk and can remember (I think) more or less everything.

Like today.

It’s just bloody stupid and I realise it’s my mind playing tricks on me.

Or that I’m going mad.

Or that I really have said/done something but I have forgotten and all that remains is this nagging doubt that I HAVE said/done something bad. Well, not necessarily “bad” but certainly not “good”.

As long as it’s not the last thing, then it’s OK, I guess :-)