Saturday, 14 February 2009
All the children stood in a heart clutching heart shaped red balloons and surrounding Jennifer- a very special little girl with a heart condition the whole school had gathered together on the day before Valentines Day to raise money for. And there she was: a little girl holding a blue balloon in a sea of red hearts. On the count of ten the children released the balloons and amongst the noise of so many excited wow's we watched the sky dot with love, Jennifer's heart floating amongst them like the beacon of hope I suppose it really was. A beautiful moment during what is so very often a commercially vulgar holiday. This week a man asked me what I would be writing about Valentines Day. He needed idea's for the French woman he was trying to woo, he said. And I replied that I found it impossible to write about today without a warped smidgeon of bitterness and regret that really wasn't becoming. And we laughed. Because I find myself ridiculous and other people rather adore it when I speak my ludi-ocrisy (I made that word up) out loud... Especially when it isn't true. What I feel isn't bitterness or regret. It is a yearning. It is impatience and frustration and a simple ache for someone to lift up my hair and tickle the back of my neck. That is all. There is nothing ugly about it. Nothing you couldn't bear to look at it if you stood beside me. It is what it is. There has been the top 50 love songs this morning, poached eggs and a self inflicted hair cut. There have been phone calls and Country Living. Kath (my very own plus one) and I will be going to the cinema this afternoon. Us and our popcorn. And tonight there will be a bath taken in milk powder. A bath taken in silence with only the ripple of opaque water to entertain me. And a card. Yes indeed, there has been a Valentine card. A beguiling card from a "Long Time Admirer" which has got me thoroughly flummoxed. What constitutes a long time? Four months? Three years? Two decades?? You, my darling admirer, tell me, because I'm not Scooby Doo and I was never good with mysteries. (Is that you Daddy?) You see I prefer my romantic declarations on a plate: preferably a pretty, gilt edged plate. The sky may be dotted with love but I want to be able to see the blue heart amongst the sea of red ones if you please, so stand up and be counted immediately: wear your heart on your sleeve or you will cause me sleepless nights suspecting all manner of undesirables and I'm sure you don't want that on your conscience. So risk it Mister. Risk everything... Happy Valentines Day Housekeepers. Happy Valentines Day Long Time Admirer. Happy Valentines Day me.