As a pivotal birthday was looming I realised that my life plan had gone remarkably wrong. I was in the middle of an amicable divorce, wasn’t making any money and was heavier than anyone my height should be without booking two seats on the train. Ok I was never that big but to me it felt it.
So what’s a girl with no money or honey to do? Simple, I was going to blow the last few hundred that I had on a credit card my soon to be ex didn’t know I still had on a holiday. Yes I was taking this emotional train wreck on a road trip.
The thing is I really hate travelling at the best of times so after my initial excitement I soon decided that staying at home would be the better option. I could finally get to watch all of the programmes I had been taping religiously whilst I slept in until Loose Women. I need did finish watching that Homes Under The Hammer from 4 months prior. Did they get the old B&B with slight damp in Bournemouth? Nope, I had too much to do.
But my soon to ex, spotting an opportunity to have his home to himself for a few days wasn’t having it. He searched for destinations which involved me getting on planes and bought me a Jasper Conrad Suitcase. It was black and pink. I couldn’t resist.
This was during my lame attempt at learning Portuguese. It lasted longer than my gym memberships but shorter than the average hairstyle. I finally decided on the island of Porto Santo. Cape Verde was too expensive and too far for this chick and I’d heard that Madeira was full of old people.
So, I arrived and promptly went to bed. The island is lovely but I’m really not one for sight-seeing and it was colder than I’d packed for. But, lap top in bag I decided this was the holiday I was going to start writing. So many ideas, so little motivation but, it was time to pull out that literary masterpiece that every English Lit major feels is in them. Fuck it there was a mini bar. I’d start tomorrow.
That night I went down to dinner and as I sat there I noticed a waiter noticing me. I dismissed it. A single woman going on holiday and getting with a bar man or waiter is so done. He came over and introduced himself. He was from Mozambique and his accent was just too cute. Lifting trays all day had also been very kind to his biceps. I fought the temptation. I have a weakness for men that look like they could lift me effortlessly. But, I was not a cliché soon to be divorced woman.
Turns out I was. He was lovely. He invited me out after dinner and said he would show me the island. Recognising that I may have to leave my room I finally accepted. I don’t think I saw more than two bars and some rickety steps on the beach where me and the waiter got better acquainted. I still think sex on the beach is over rated but sex on the rickety steps on the beach was truly delicious.
For 4 whole days that man spoiled me. I didn’t pay for a thing and he treated me like a queen. But having seen my fair share of day time TV I was waiting for the downside. Would he wait until I got back to the UK before begging me for money? Would he steal my passport on the last day leaving me stranded on an island without a Nandos? I had visions of me on Richard and Judy explaining why I had accepted a pink purse as a gift which had been secretly stuffed with cocaine. I wasn’t going down like that my precious. Prison jumpsuits just make my butt look enormous.
But no instead he woke me up with breakfast in bed every morning, took me out to local secret restaurants and kept me up all night with the best sex I’d had in years. I truly needed this.
Alas I know the rules of holiday dalliances. He was happy on the island and I was going back to the realities of London life. I just checked on facebook and those arms are still looking good.
The waiter restored my faith in romance and men. I came back to the UK determined to throw myself into the dating game with the same openness and honesty he had shown me. The only cliché I had to avoid was the bitter divorced woman who didn’t trust men. Besides, it was time to move on. My ex wanted his house back. My dating adventure had truly begun.
© Chelsea Black