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Saturday, July 9, 2011

Lamentable lesbian love story-final cut (my,hopefully,last,dysfunctional "non-relationship" or perils of Facebook)

This is quite a long entry, but it covers almost a year of my life.
 This year was somewhat of a landmark: as a result of the events described here, I have reviewed and re-evaluated my life and the way I do and perceive things. I've made some fundamental adjustments. I look at things differently these days and am, in many ways, a changed person.
I am writing this "piecemeal" and re-write and edit as I go, but it's important for me to get it right,as it is part of "understanding myself" process.

I try to write about things when I had some time to think them over, not "in the heat of the moment".
Putting  time and distance between myself and event(s) helps me to gain perspective, to understand it better and draw some conclusions/learn some lessons. It helps me understand people's motivations.
More often than not, I just feel "ready" to write about someone or something. It comes out of nowhere: suddenly my thoughts are organised and sentences and paragraphs just form in my head on their own accord.
It is harsh,but I need to "not care anymore', to be completely dispassionate.
As cliche as it sounds, no experience is a bad experience as long as we've learned something from it.
I've been putting off writing this particular chapter because I wanted to be well and truly "over" the person, so I can be objective about her. I also wanted to have all the facts, "the whole picture".
I must warn you, this will read like a bad lesbian soap opera, but I assure you,the events described really took place. Sometimes life is stranger than fiction. Definitely, more complicated.

Last two years have been pretty rough for me (as evident from "The One" entry). In an attempt to get away from everything for a while,I've decided to take 2 weeks "working holiday" to Melbourne last August.
I've never been to Melbourne before and heard a lot about it, so I thought I'd have a look and make a bit of "spending money" in the process.
I am very organised, so researched Melbourne parlours on-line in advance and contacted (or attempted to contact,rather) the one I liked.
But fate interfered (it's true:everything happens for a reason). That particular parlour was having issues with their website, so I went with my "second choice", where manager responded straight away,seemed very nice,professional and organised.
Upon arrival, I've discovered that the place was quite nice,although a bit further into suburbs than I would've liked. But the girls,receptionist and the manager were great and I was having a good time.
At first, I ended up working with one particular receptionist quite often. We'll call her Ella (not her real name). She was very interesting to talk to: just graduated from the Uni with a degree in philosophy, I believe, and also was going through a similar situation as I was (personal life).
Ella told me that her "One", "the love of her life" as she referred to him, has broken her heart. They had this intense affair for 6 months and then he received his "dream job offer" overseas and just couldn't pass it up. He offered to take Ella with him, but she wasn't willing to move. Although they haven't broken up at the time of his departure, in the next few months,largely thanks to Facebook (oh,good 'ol Facebook-you're ruined so many relationships) things went "to shit", pretty much. They've stopped communicating.
Suddenly, that guy emailed Ella to tell her that his grandma passed away and he'd be in town. He wanted to see her.
Ella was quite anxious. She kept talking about him. In fact, she told me the whole story: his past,her life,their relationship,etc. I could definitely relate, as I was going through my own private hell with Sara,my ex. I've told Ella all about that. Misery and broken hearts was our common ground.
Throughout my stay in Melbourne, that guy did come into town, Ella did see him,gone to bed with him and talked to him at length. He went back overseas. I think they both gained some sort of closure.
Ella was also constantly talking about one of her friends who worked in that same parlour as a receptionist. We'll call her Lara.
Lara was openly gay. Ella told me that she and Lara go to gay clubs together,"just for fun" and Lara keeps trying to "hook her up" with a girl. Ella came across as definitely "straight" to me, but she was clearly curious,asking me lots of questions about very specific things regarding lesbian lovemaking,etc.
It seemed that Ella spent quite a few nights in Lara's place,sleeping in the same bed with her (not having sex,mind-just as  friends).
Ella said few things that puzzled me at the time. For instance, she came to work one Sat morning looking like  death warmed over. She told me that she was out with Lara the night before and kept drinking shots that she didn't even liked. I asked why and the reply was "Well... because they were bought for me, I guess". Apparently, Lara kept buying her drinks.
Another time she said that Lara wanted her to go out Fri night, and she really didn't feel like it, yet would probably end up going.
Some of the working girls kept talking about Lara as well, saying that they felt "safe" working there when Lara was the receptionist in charge.
Naturally, I was getting really curious. I was looking forward to finally meeting this Lara.
I did-a few days later. She was working her usual night shift (starting at 7 pm) and I was staying over from the day shift. She walked into the girl's lounge and really made quite an impression on me straight away.
First off, she was tall...REALLY tall. And "tall" is a huge turn-on for me. It has to do with certain things that I like in bed  that drive me absolutely crazy ("getting out" state that I've mentioned in one of my previous posts).
Lara definitely had my attention. Then she spoke and I was captivated: she had this deep,low voice (not at all masculine,just low) and that is another huge turn-on for me. I find those kinds of voices extremely sexy on women.
To be honest, Lara was not at all what I normally go for: she had her hair done the way that it looked like a man's haircut (it wasn't really, she just had shaved undercuts on both sides and quite long piece in the middle, but she tucked the middle piece in ), she wore no make-up, had multiple piercings on her face and very extensive tattoos (the ones  I could see, on her arms.She actually has them all over,as I found out later). She also favored a baseball cap as her headgear. Yet there was something feminine about her.
 Lara had very elegant facial features:high cheekbones,high forehead,beautifully rounded jawline. And she had amazing eyes: large and very expressive,they were blue in stark contrast to her dark hair. Although very tall and very slender, she moved with grace and wasn't at all awkward,as common for a lot of tall people. She had a true "clotheshorse" body-in a good sense. She could easily be a model: because of her slender frame and impressive height, she can pull off practically any outfit. In fact, during the time that I've known her, I often though about how great it would be if she'd let me "style' her-just for fun.
 She actually has a great style that is uniquely hers and it suits her, but I love clothes and, especially, putting together various pieces to create complete outfits (Sara,my ex, wanted me to "dress" for all important meetings/functions) and I love to dress someone who can carry off practically any garment, to experiment with different pieces, to try something new and unexpected,especially with someone who is not afraid to look different.
As I talked to her a bit, something definitely stirred-there was something about her that drew me in. Chemistry, I guess. As the night progressed, I found myself very much attracted to Lara. And,yes, the attraction was very much physical as well. In fact, I was consumed with lust.
This was very sudden and unexpected. Up until that moment I was not at all over my ex. Because Sara (the ex) was going through a very rough patch, I was supporting her emotionally and financially (just as a friend), we were texting each other several times a day, I called her frequently as well. Although our romantic relationship was over, I was still hoping that we could  rekindle it.
So this thing with Lara came completely out of the left field. It's not that I forgot all about Sara, but Lara was definitely on my mind now. I was imagining her going into one of the rooms in the parlour with me, to "help" me with the bedding and instead pinning me to the wall and putting her fingers inside me. When I worked on her shift, I was so horny, I was constantly wet.
Next time I worked with Ella, I asked her if Lara was single. Ella said "yes". I wanted to get to know Lara, but was unsure as to how to proceed. I text Nina,the manager,asking for Lara's number, but received the reply saying that the number could not be given away,  but she"d  pass along my details.
This has it's own significance,as will become apparent later.
Next day,out of the blue, Ella said to me "I can tell you where else Lara is working". She proceeded to tell me the name of that other parlour. I told her  I would stop by there after my shift. Ella wanted to know exactly what I was going to do. I was a bit puzzled. "I'll just ask her if she wants to have a drink,that's all".
After finishing my shift, I walked over to the street where the other parlour was located, but, being new to town,I walked in the other direction and didn't find it.
But I didn't let that stop me. When I got to my hotel,  I looked up parlour's phone number and called. Lara answered the phone in her unmistakable low sexy voice. I didn't want to be presumptuous and was nervous as well, so I asked if I could speak to "Lara". Although she most definitely recognised my voice (I have a strong Russian accent), she told me that "Lara was not there" and hang up on me. It was clear she wasn't interested. What surprised me is that how it actually "cut" me-I was more than a little disappointed.
But there was nothing I could do, so I've decided to forget all about Lara.
It didn't turn out to be that way. Next day Ella wanted to know how things went-she was VERY interested,in fact. I told her that Lara is clearly not interested. But Ella wouldn't let it drop. She proceeded to tell me that Lara had to be very careful with "inter-office" romances.
 Apparently, some working girls complained of being "uncomfortable" with Lara's sexuality to management and Lara was put on notice.
It all sounded very strange to me. The thing is, I am very open about my sexuality: I talk about it all the time at work, I crack off-colour jokes (sometimes quite lewd) and I've never had an issue. Other WLs (straight ones) are quite happy to do "double" bookings with me. I was never told to "curb" it in any of the parlours where I worked (about a dozen or so). No one ever felt "uncomfortable".
 In fact, upon arrival at the parlour where Lara and Ella worked, it came up fairly quick that I was gay in conversation with the manager,Nina, and she never told me to mind my P's and Q's. So I wasn't at all sure what Ella was on about. This,too has a significance that would become apparent as time go on.
But Ella was bound and determined. Later, when all the girls were out of the lounge momentarily, she told me "in strict confidence" that Lara was talking about me and thought I was "really hot" and not to give up.
She was,quite clearly,wanting to get me and Lara together, for some reason. I know what that reason was now and will explain it in due time.
I worked with Lara again and tried to talk to her a bit, but she was mostly sitting at the front desk and opportunities were limited. One time,standing at the desk, I run my finger lightly up Lara's arm. She gave me a sharp look, which I interpreted to be "Do not touch" and I pulled my hand away. The phone call that I've made to her other place of work was never brought up by either one of us.
It was my last night in Melbourne. I was at work, as my plane wasn't scheduled until next day at 6 pm.
Lara came in and was surprised to see me. "I thought yesterday was your last night" she said. I made some joke about not being raised in a barn and my Mom teaching me enough manners to say proper good-bye's.
Lara and I didn't get to talk much that last shift. When it came time for me to leave, I've decided to make a last-ditch effort, just for the hell of it. I wrote down my NZ phone number and my email address on a piece of paper with the intention of giving it to Lara. But when I was leaving, Lara was on the phone. I was going to just leave and forget all about it.
Suddenly, Lara looked up (I was already at the door). "You know why I hang up on you" she asked. I stopped dead in my tracks. "That other place records all phone calls and I didn't want our conversation recorded. I've tried calling you back from my cell, but it was a hotel switchboard and I didn't know your room number or your real name" she proceeded to tell me. "Who told you where I worked,anyway?"-by then she excused herself from someone named "Sarah" who was on the other end of the line. I wouldn't tell her it was Ella (at least not then, I didn't).
I gave her the piece of paper with my phone number/email and told her to give me a ring when she was  in NZ next. And with that, I was out of the door.
I was standing at the bus stop,waiting for a bus and just buzzing with excitement! I guess, Lara was interested,after all. I kept checking my phone,expecting to see a text from her. When none came by the time I got to the hotel, I called her at work (I didn't have her cell number) and asked if she was gonna give me her number. She flicked me a text straight away.
I started flirting. Thing was, I didn't have much time (was going back to NZ in less than 24 hours and had no plans to come back to Australia any time soon) and I really,really wanted to see Lara. To see her privately. Yip, I wanted her to shag the daylights out of me.
I asked her if she'd come and have a breakfast with me after she was done working. She didn't reply for a couple of hours, but then text me to say that she could meet me at 2 in the afternoon. I was so excited, I could hardly sleep.
Alas, next morning at 6am I got a text from her saying that she won't be able to make it, after all.
I was so disappointed!
I got a text from Lara when I was at the airport, wishing me a safe flight. We engaged in some more flirting.

When I got home, Lara completely invaded my thoughts. I felt happy, for a change. It was nice: I've been miserable and heartbroken for over a year and it felt wonderful to be that excited about someone!
By then I realised that I feel quite a bit more than just pure physical attraction towards Lara.  I thought about that a lot.
BUT... I just came out of a train wreck of a relationship that almost destroyed me and didn't want to find myself in some "rebound" gig. I was actually glad I've never had a chance to go to bed with Lara,as I didn't want the chemicals to muddle the waters and make my brain confuse love and lust.
I've sent Lara a rose to her work (using Internet) with a note saying "I wish I had more time". She text me to thank me.
A week later I've sent her a cute T-shirt I saw in one of the shops and in another week a stuffed toy dog (I know,corny...LOL).
I wanted to get to know Lara more, but she was quite cagey-she would give me short answers and revealed nothing.
It was a bit frustrating,actually: I would write her a really long text and she would answer with one sentence.

Lara  text me from time to time, but still would not reveal any personal details. In fact, it took her forever to even tell me how old she was-and to this day I suspect that she wasn't truthful: I think she is actually a couple of years younger than she said she was.
I felt that we had a lot in common,though: from what little she revealed, she appeared to be quite mature for her age,setting serious financial goals and taking practical steps to achieve them,she had impeccable work ethic (not very common for people her age these days),she was looking for the same qualities in a partner that I was looking for. We even shared some rather unorthodox views on partnership and monogamy (both believe in plural relationships).  The biggest thing for me,though, was the fact that she already knew what I do for a living and said she didn't mind and that she's dated a WLs before-something that is rather hard to present to someone you've just met and not always goes down well.
I've decided to go back to Melbourne. I am one of those people who give everything the best possible try. This way, when the dust has settled, I know I did everything I could and have no doubts or regrets about "what might have been".
I bought a ticket for the first week of October, but haven't told Lara about it.
I told some of my friends about her. The reaction was mixed. Some just wished me all the best and were cheering on the sidelines,but some (Sara,my ex included) warned me to be cautious and to keep my heart closed for the time being.
Sara was kind of "funny" about these things,actually: she didn't want me for herself, but she never wanted me to be with someone else,either. I think that was because she didn't want to share all the emotional and financial support I was providing for her. She quite liked the fact that she could text me anytime (including in the dead of the night) saying just "I feel blue" or "I am so sad" and I would jump to it,responding immediately with supportive messages,etc. Same on the financial side of things: she'd text me or email me saying how she couldn't get a warrant on her car,for example, because the tyres need replacing and she doesn't have any money and I would  put money into her account immediately.
 Clearly, she realised this would not be the case if I had a regular partner. But she was quite clever about the whole thing:it was all disguised as friendly concern and wanting what's "best for me". Sara advised me to "tread carefully" and even "leave it".
Lara tended to text me late at night,as she was working night shift exclusively and slept during the day. Night shift in a parlour (especially "out-of-the-way" suburban parlour) could be pretty boring.
One night our text conversation got pretty raunchy: she got me really hot and bothered. When I joked about how she kept things pretty low key up to this point, she replied: "it's just a form of foreplay-to rope you in. And it's working!" I couldn't wait to be in Melbourne and see her!
I finally told Lara that I'm coming over-about 2 weeks later. She seemed to like the idea. In the meantime, I would get random texts from her,asking me why  I was so interested in her and that she thought I'd like a more "feminine" woman. She'd flatter me by saying that I am such experienced,well-rounded,accomplished woman and she is just a "wee little kiddie"... I didn't know what to tell her: I did feel strongly about her, but I wanted to make sure it's not just a fleeting infatuation. I was definitely looking forward to the trip to Melbourne: I thought it would all become clear then.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
The night of my flight I was so nervous, I couldn't sleep. Lara was working her usual night shift until 5 am, and I was arriving at 8am, so we agreed that we both get some sleep and meet for coffee around 4pm.
To be completely honest, I was hoping she would surprise me and meet me at the airport. Call me a hopeless romantic. I really like surprises like that.
She wasn't waiting for me at the airport, but we did meet for coffee later that day. It was a bit awkward initially,with conversation stilted somewhat and both of us saying some things that came out wrong and could been misinterpreted, but by the end of it we both felt we want to see more of each other. We've made plans to meet the next day.
Lara went to work, but was texting me later that night and we ended up talking more.
That week was truly lovely. The weather was unseasonably warm, I really enjoyed having some time off work and did a lot of walking,discovering different areas of Melbourne. Some "retail therapy" went a long way as well.
During that week, Lara made an effort to see me quite a lot: we would meet for coffee in the afternoon,went to dinner twice and she came over to my hotel room and we spent hours just laying on the top of the bed and talking. No,we didn't have sex,didn't even kiss.
 Lara was laying next to me (we were fully dressed),stroking my thigh. I wanted her to touch me, to REALLY touch me. She wasn't making the move,though.That's what made me think that Lara actually perceived this as something meaningful,that she didn't want just a shag.
Myself, I never try to force things. I am a big believer in "no" means "no". I can stop at any time, regardless of how horny or intoxicated I may be. If the other woman not even so much says,but whispers "no", I will stop immediately, no matter how far  things have gone and how she seemed to want to have sex just a moment ago. This what separates me from the predators that are male species. There is no such thing as "point of no return" for me, while there definitely is for most men.
Both Lara and I can get laid pretty much any time we want to and with a minimal effort. To me, someone wanting to have sex with me indicates that the person is horny (not even necessary for ME,just plain horny). Sex as currency has very little value to me.
Having someone invest their time in talking to me and getting to know me meant so much more. I was beginning to think that it was the start of something serious.
I am not going to keep you in suspense: it wasn't. Lara had her own agenda,as became apparent later, which I knew nothing about at the time. It's not that she wanted to hurt me on purpose, but she was definitely not being completely honest with me,either.
As I've found out months later, Lara was in love with Ella (yes,that other receptionist from the parlour who tried so hard to get me and Lara together). They started out just as friends, but as time went on, Lara  fell in love with her.
I have been in a similar situation myself and it is very tricky: on the one hand, you're feeling this attraction and you want to be with the person, to tell them how you feel, to touch them, to kiss them,etc. On the other hand, you really value the friendship and is worried sick that any kind of  romantic move you make will destroy it.
It is so easy to misinterpret people's actions and misunderstand their motivations.
It came up in our conversations with Lara that I've been in situations where I ended up romantically involved and/or gone to bed with girls/women who were initially just my friends. I've made comments like "It was a mistake" or "I should never done it". Lara was asking a lot of questions about it, she  wanted to know all the details. I thought she was genuinely interested in me and wanted to know me better. In reality, she was applying the knowledge to her own situation.
It's not wrong to learn from someone else's mistakes-not at all. In fact, it's a smart way of going through life.
I don't fault Lara for that. What I resent is the fact that she wasn't honest and lead me on while having absolutely no intention of pursuing any kind of relationship with me.
 Honesty in this situation is a bit of a grey area. If some woman told me that she's flying overseas just to spend some time with me because she really wanted to, I would be flattered. It would do wonders for my ego and,yes, I would definitely go out with her, whether or not I reciprocated her feelings. However, I will not lead that person on: I am old enough to know that it would end up unpleasantly for both of us.
Lara is quite young still and does not have enough life experience. She is so very mature in many ways and,yet, in many ways, still just a kid.
Enough time has passed for me to look at the whole situation philosophically and write things off to "lack of life experience".
It was different when I was right in the middle of it:  very emotional and not at all easy to be objective. I was head over heels in love,after a miserable year and a half and I desperately wanted some happiness.
I take full responsibility for what happened,though. The thing is, I did see the signs and I could draw the right conclusions:the very same thing happened to me when I was 19 (see my "Life Is Messy" entry).
 Lara kept talking about Ella (much more so than any other of her friends)and she did some things that appeared unusual for "just friends" behaviour.
One night, for instance, we were in CBD,walking to Lara's car after dinner. Lara received a text and commented that it was from Ella. She then text Ella back just saying that she "is not home". It was,clearly, a play. She wanted to pique Ella's interest, but didn't want to tell her that she was with me, which would be normal response to "just a friend".
Other time Lara was calling Ella after one of our "coffee dates", telling her where she was (which suburb), but, again, not telling her whom she was with. Take into account the fact that Lara was on her way to work and was going to see Ella in just a few minutes... Mmmm
 Yes, the signs were all there, staring me in the face. I chose to ignore them. I did the equivalent of putting my hands over my ears,shutting my eyes and chanting the tune to block what was staring me in the face. I wanted to be happy, I wanted a nice relationship,I wanted to believe that my feelings were reciprocated.
I should know by now that you cannot "will" love to happen. If it's not there,no matter how hard you try to "make it happen", it just won't. It is the hard truth of life. So,no, I am not blameless in all of this.
There were other things that should have been warning signs for me, but,as I have numerous issues myself, I tend not to rush to judgement and give people a chance to work things out. Most do: although not without a "baggage", they cope and manage their everyday lives just fine and, despite occasional "hiccups" have mutually fulfilling relationships with their partners.
From what Lara told me of her childhood and her life, it appears that she has some serious abandonment issues, which result in trust and intimacy issues. She wants,no, she NEEDS to be not just liked,  but loved,yet,deep down is afraid of intimacy (I mean TRUE intimacy,not just sexual). She loves the feeling of "high" that new love brings (dopamine and oxytocin at play), of that great desire-limerence. She wants to be desired like that herself.
We've all experienced this before and,yes, it is absolutely amazing. It is mostly chemically induced,though (the fact that the chemicals are produced by our bodies does not make the cocktail any less potent). Trouble is, chemicals wear off. That's when you find out whether or not you're in it just for "good times" or for a long haul. That's when your lover's quirks suddenly become annoying instead of  cute or endearing.
I've said it before and I say it again: love fades,looks fade,sex becomes repetitive and monotonous. At the end of the day it's whether or not you can put up with each other's "shit".Indefinitely.Whether you "have your partner's back" and are willing to overlook all the small stuff for the sake of the common goal.
If you feel that one or both of your parents didn't love you, you constantly seek love to fill that gaping void. Trouble is, at the same time you are subconsciously afraid to 'jump in with both feet", to surrender yourself fully to the relationship, as you fear the repetition of the events of your childhood; you fear that you will be abandoned,betrayed,rejected and,in the end, left "out in the cold". So you hold back, don't open up completely,save a part of yourself "just in case".
In time, this results in crumbling of the relationship. You start picking  fights,you "create"obstacles where none exists, ultimately either walking away from the relationship yourself or facilitating your partner giving up and abandoning the relationship,which only reinforces your believes. It's a catch 22 and a pretty vicious cycle.
The more unattainable the person seems, the more you want to get them to love you. You feel your self-worth soar when someone who didn't appear available at all (straight person,for instance,when pursued by a gay person, or someone already in a relationship,or someone who wouldn't be interested in you under normal circumstances:i.e you're not their "type",etc). So you make an effort to win them over, to 'hook" them in order to feel that great "high", but when they do fall for you, when they want something more,true intimacy, it scares you off and you run.
This is just my opinion, and, of course, I am not claiming to be an "oracle of gospel truth". But now, that almost a year has passed,having spoken to others, I think that's what one of Lara's issues is in a nutshell.
Paranoia is the other (which,really,stems from the first one).
Lara told me that she actually maintains 2 flats and uses different names in order to prevent people from knowing where she really lives. She seemed to worry a lot about other people talking about her. At first, she didn't even want me to know which car was hers.
She told me about an ex-girlfriend who stalked her forever and made her life miserable.
She said  she doesn't like surprises and un-announced visits and doesn't ever open  packages or private letters herself;she wants someone else to do it and tell her what's in it.
I could understand about the stalker: I've had a nasty one (ex-client) who doggedly pursued me and made my life hell,myself, but the other stuff seemed a bit excessive.
But we all have our quirks. I have some habits that might seem bizarre to others, so I am not ever the one to judge. Besides, I wanted this to work.
I went home more confused than ever. I thought I'd be going back with clarity: Lara either had no interest in me whatsoever or I'd have a girlfriend. But neither was a case. Out of the whole trip I only got one hug,which is where I discovered something interesting..LOL..
You see, I've never dated a person this tall before. Here's the snag: you can't kiss them unless they concede to it:i.e. lower their head to your level. When we hugged, my face would come up just above Lara's boobs. If she didn't lower her head, I wasn't able to reach her mouth or cheek ,even if I stood on my tippie-toes.
This was entirely new experience for me,as all my past girlfriends were about my height or shorter, so I could always give them a peck on the cheek, or kiss the top of their head.
I am very  "touchy-feely" person. Hugs,hand-holding,kisses are all very important to me. I tend to do a lot of reassuring hang-squeezing and hugs,even with my friends.
Yet with Lara it was different. Every time I was getting ready to meet with her, I thought about how it would be easy and natural to give her a hug, to touch her hand,to kiss her (even if only on the cheek). Yet when we were actually together, it was as if she erected an invisible "wall" and I couldn't get beyond it. I couldn't bring myself to do something that came so natural to me with everyone else,even strangers.
My last day in Melbourne, Lara came to have coffee with me in the morning. We had a nice conversation, but it got awkward in the end, when we were standing by her car, her with that "wall" around her, not letting me touch her.
I asked her if she wants me to come and see her again. She replied that she was "unsure". I should have just gotten on that plane and made myself  force her out of my mind. But it wasn't that easy. Or that simple.
So I went home... All my friends wanted to know what happened and I had nothing to tell them: I didn't know where Lara and I stood.
We've talked quite a bit online and conversations were pretty intense. I asked her if there was something that was bothering her about me. She replied it was the fact that I lived in NZ. She proceeded to tell me that for a long time she's been looking for someone like me: well-rounded,accomplished,educated,financially secure,with no bad habits (neither one of us does drugs or smokes or drinks excessively), but she could never meet someone like that. According to her she then decided to sort herself out first: buy a property (she said she keeps moving and never really feels settled), go to the Uni.. She quoted one of her friends saying that "unless she takes care of herself, God will not give her another to take care off". Then Lara wrote:"And now YOU are here and I don't know what to think". She said she needs time to get to know me better.
Well, I didn't know what to think,either. I told her I would be willing to spend about 3-4 weeks at a time in Melbourne and a couple of months in Wellington and rotate back and forth like that for a while, so we can see how things are going.
She said she couldn't accept that. I asked why and she  said that she didn't feel she had to explain herself to me. I was offended  and felt  she wasn't willing to make an effort. I ended the conversation abruptly,saying that I had to go and logged off. I've decided that this is going nowhere. Again, I should have just walked away,right then and there.
What I know now is what Lara really needed time for was Ella: she wanted to see if she could succeed in having a romantic relationship with her. In case that failed, she wanted to have me on the back burner,"waiting in line". This way she would have the love she needs at all times without interruption and with a minimal effort-a pattern for her.
When I logged on again,though, there was a message from her saying that she really wanted to explain things to me, that time is important to her and she's not sure that I would understand why.
Lara did that all the time: just when I'd make up my mind to let the whole thing go, she would "hook" me right back in with ambiguous messages that could be interpreted in many ways, with innuendos,half-truths and statements that implied things without actually spelling it out.
Lara is highly intelligent and,yes,manipulative,yet deeply insecure. This is part of her MO which stems from the abandonment issues described above. BUT..People don't do to us anything  that we don't let them do: I enabled her. I let this go on. I take full responsibility for that.
My friends urged me to forget all about her. They didn't think this "non-relationship" was doing me any good,especially after the year that I've had. But I was in a pattern of "familiar,comfortable dysfunction" and  didn't see it for what it was.
Another thing was Facebook.  When Lara finally "friended" me, she blocked her wall, so that I could only see her photos and basic info. When I asked her about it, the explanation was that she sometimes is not as mature as she appears to be and she doesn't want me to see all the "stupid,childish" things she gets up to. I took it in a spirit it was said thinking,again, it was a sign that she values our relationship,views it as meaningful and doesn't want to "disappoint" me,as I always told her that her maturity really impressed me.
Shortly after I arrived in NZ from my visit in October, I received a text from Lara. It read "I've told you that I am immature at times. Last night I went out,had too much to drink,fell and have a gash in my head now". Being a really caring,nurturing type, I called her immediately. I wanted to know what happened and, to be honest, was quite ready to fly right back to Melbourne to take care of her. She assured me that she'll be all right, but from what I understood, it was a pretty serious fall. I wanted her to go to the hospital.
I text her later that night asking if she had. She got really short with me, but apologised later. Yet another example of what I now refer to as "the pattern".
One night Lara text me and asked a very direct question: "You said you don't  sleep with just anyone. So how do you feel about me?". I was honest. I told her I liked her,I liked her a lot, but she didn't seem to want to have sex with me when I was in Melbourne, so that was that. I wanted to add that I was falling for her big time, but I didn't: I felt  it might freak her out. She just replied "OK". "Wait a minute", I said, you can't just leave the conversation like that... "How do you feel about me?" Again, the reply was now familiar "I am unsure. I need more time".
Now that I am completely emotionally unattached, it is easy to say "How could you not see it?? Why did you let it go on??" I see the whole thing for what it was now: self-serving deceit, but hindsight is always 20/20,isn't it?..LOL..
I've made plans to go see Lara in the next couple of weeks. I didn't tell her about it straight away.
We had a bit of a blow up  the next week, when a friend and I were having our bi-weekly "lezzo drinks" (there is a group of us) and her (my friend's) ex showed up. We were making a big production of being all over each other and snapping photos. I was tagged on FB later.
I messaged Lara to explain the photos, because I wanted her to know that I am quite serious about her and she is not just a "flight of fancy" to me. I also told her that I'm coming to visit.
It wasn't a major discussion, in my opinion, I just made a mention of it and went to bed.
The message I discovered the next morning quite shocked me. It read "You can do whatever you want with whomever you want. You are not my girlfriend or my wife. I don't care what you do".
I found it unpleasant and unsettling. All else aside, I definitely wanted someone who does,in fact,care. I also did not at all expect this kind of violent reaction. Lara and I did not talk for a few days.
I text her after a while, just saying "Hi". She replied "You really pissed me off". I tried to make lite of it and told her that I'm not very smart sometimes and that I am sorry. In response I received terse "How can you be sorry if you don't even know what you've done wrong". We left it at that.
As I've already bought the ticket. I was going to take the trip, but  decided that I will not see Lara and will not contact her.
I received a message from her the night before my flight. She was asking me if I'm still coming. I just said "yes". But then I told her  I felt that she is just "stroking her ego" with me and  I need clarity and  I don't think
we should continue our "non-relationship".
Her reply was quite fiery. She told me that I am not a person to talk about her ego, as I don't know her at all. She gave me this self-righteous speech about saying things "in one's face" and how she would like for me to face her and talk to her in person. I replied that I am not a coward and definitely am not afraid of confrontation and stand by what I've said.
I got a milder message in reply,her saying she just wants to "sit and talk" and not argue.In fact, she even text me that when I was slow in replying to her inbox message. It appeared she really wanted to see me.
 I was up for "just talking". I've had a really rough week (which had to do with my ex-husband and taxes that I owe in US) and I wanted a pleasant company and nice conversation.
I must say, I really truly enjoyed conversations with Lara-that part was always great. She is quite an amazing person and often presented a different point of view, yet at the same time, we saw a lot of things (some of them quite  un-orthodox) from the same perspective. I think that's the part that I've missed the most.
We agreed to meet for coffee the next day,when I arrived to Melbourne.
Conversation was good,as always. Then Lara wanted to discuss personal matters. She told me that she showed my message to one of her friends and the friend had a theory. Lara started to tell me what the theory was, but stopped after a few sentences and said that it was hard to explain, but it made sense when her friend was presenting it.
As I've mentioned before, I always listen carefully to what others say and pay attention to details. I also tend to remember all those details and am quite skilled at "connecting the dots". What Lara was trying to say was that her friend believes  she (Lara) "makes people feel special and they mistake that for romantic interest", in a nutshell.
Lara stopped herself before she finished saying that, however,because,clearly, it did not sound right even to her : I doubt she told her friend the entire story, with all the details and sexual innuendos,etc. No, she didn't just "make me feel special", she clearly and unmistakably lead me on in sexual and romantic sense.
We agreed to meet again and I walked her to what I thought was her house (I can't really be sure,as there was always  a "shroud of mystery" surrounding her living situation).
We had a text conversation later that night and agreed to meet again in a day, on a Saturday.
That was the weekend of Ella's birthday and Lara was planning to go out with Ella and friends Fri and Sat night. I,in the meantime, was planning to work.
Sat morning Lara text me to postpone our meeting for an hour ("running late",she said) and when I arrived to Flinder's station (our meeting point) at appointed time, she made me wait further 20 min before turning up.
Again, it was part of "the pattern"-just small subtle way of controlling the person/situation.
We had coffee and Lara was on a mission to get a particular book (gay content,by Rita Mae Brown). I think she wanted it for Ella (part of her plan to convert Ella, I think).
While in the bookstore, I noticed that one of the buttons on Lara's shirt was undone. While I was buttoning it for her, Lara was making a joke about the fly of her shorts being undone as well and how she would like for me to do it up with my teeth.
She had no idea,of course,that it was something that really turns me on: the whole "on my knees", submissive scenario. Public place being additional  enhancement...LOL. I would've been quite willing to go in between bookcases, get down on my knees and put my mouth on her!
Lara went home to "get some sleep" and I went to work.
Suddenly, I was overwhelmed with a feeling of foreboding. I do get those occasionally. They are neither "anxiety attacks" nor "clairvoyant" experiences. In fact, they are not exact science at all. I just get a feeling and, inevitably, some unpleasant event follows. Now that I'm older, I try to mentally "apply" people or events to those feelings in my mind in an attempt to figure out which area they relay to. Sometimes it works better than others.
I've met with Lara again Mon afternoon,my last day in Melbourne-I was going home the next morning. Again,Lara was about 20 min late.
In many ways, that meeting was very significant.
Lara was telling me how tired she was. The reason: she went out with Ella Sat night, left around 1pm only to be awakened 2 hours later by a phone call from Ella, lost and wondering the streets drunk somewhere. Lara immediately got in her car, went looking for her, took her home and put her to bed.
She slept a couple of hours in her own house and went back to Ella's next morning to "take her to McDonald's and buy her cigarettes".
Again, I should have just run at that point. It was obvious that a lot more than simple "friendship" was going on.
To begin with, Lara always puts her phone on "silent" when she goes to bed, so she doesn't get any messages until the next morning. The fact that she had her phone on tells me that she was either hoping for or expecting a phone call from Ella. The fact that she went back to Ella's next morning just to "buy her cigarettes and breakfast" was very telling as well.
Again, I blocked it from my mind.
Lara was talking about Ella all the way through our meeting,pretty much. I think she was also texting her, as well.
I asked Lara if she wanted me to come and see her when she would be in NZ, visiting her family in a couple of weeks and take her out to dinner. She just shook her head "No".
Then,quite suddenly, she was ready to go. As soon as we were outside the cafe, she said very quick goodbye and pretty much run off, leaving me standing on the corner.
I was very upset. As I was walking towards the tram stop, tears were streaming down my face.
I got a text from Lara before I had a chance to get to my hotel. She said she wasn't feeling well and went to work early so she could take a cold shower.I sent a curt reply.
Few hours later, I called Lara at work and asked her if she was feeling alright. I also asked her if she realised that she basically just left me standing on the corner. Again, she said she just felt really sick and needed a shower.
I think she was just in a hurry to see Ella,who worked the day shift that day.
I went to sleep, but was awakened by a text from Lara in the middle of the night. She told me that she was reading a philosophy book and it made her introspective. She said she was feeling "weird" about that afternoon.
We went on to have an intense conversation, at the end of which Lara told me that she could only offer me her friendship. I was taken aback. "There is no attraction,then?" I asked. "Oh,there is a lot of mental and physical attraction" she replied, "but I can't give what you need and deserve right now". "Now?" I asked. "What about later?" "Yes, later,after I set myself up".
There is a famous expression: hope springs eternal. I wanted so badly for this to work, I was willing to wait.
I take responsibility for my decision: no one twisted my arm, it was me,myself and I making that choice.
I went home with that same foreboding feeling persisting.
In the days that followed conversations with Lara became really impersonal. Oh, she would text me or message me, but it was more of "What are you up to" nature.Definitely, there were no more of those great discussions that I enjoyed so much.
One morning, when I saw Lara online, I asked her about it straight up. I told her I wanted  to know more about her, but felt she was avoiding personal subjects.
At first she acted as if she didn't know what I meant, but then said that our conversations were "getting really intense, relationship stuff and all" and that she "didn't want to lead me on".
I thought to myself "Well, it's a bit late for THAT,ain't it, sweetheart", but bit my tongue. I asked her again about the status of our "non- relationship". "Do you mean you don't want to just now,or do you mean "never?" "Not just now" she replied.
So that was that. I was still hoping against hope.
Lara was staying in touch. She would flick me a text or an email every few days, sometimes few times a day.
Time was getting closer to her planned trip to NZ to see her family.
I've made up my mind to go see her in Auckland (where her family lives).
I've booked a hotel and bought a ticket.
The night before Lara was due to fly to NZ, I called her at work. After some small talk, I asked if she wanted to see me in Auckland. Her answer seriously puzzled me.
Lara said she did want to see me, but when she mentioned me to her parents, her stepmother supposedly "flew off the handle" because of my age. "Wait" I said, "Your parents don't like me because I am older?".
"Well, just my step mom" she replied "And I don't want to make any trouble for my Dad-I don't want to cause a fight, so I won't be able to spend the night. Also, I don't have a car there, so my sister would have to drive me".
We agreed that she'd call  or email me when she arrives there and we'd make arrangements to meet.
I was actually not at all unhappy. From the way Lara presented the situation, it appeared that she'd spoken to her parents about me and not just as a "friend", since they had a problem with me being older. That implied that she, in fact, WAS somewhat serious about me or at least was considering a relationship.
Also the mention of  spending the night gave me a pause. We've never slept together, never even kissed and I was just thinking a coffee,maybe a dinner, but was she planning something more??
This part of the puzzle I never got to solve. To this day I have no idea what that conversation was all about.
Months later, when Nina was talking to me about Lara, she remarked: "Everything she (Lara) says is carefully calculated". I am not entirely convinced Lara is this evil Mastermind Nina paints her to be.Simply put, I think Lara is just a "little girl lost", but she is undeniably intelligent and yes, quite manipulative, so the jury is out on that particular episode: your guess is as good as mine.
Lara never made it to NZ. I arrived to Auckland on Mon and didn't hear from her until Tues night,when she text me. She told me that she was still in Melbourne: she had a huge fight with her family and is not coming at all. I asked her what's happened and she just said she "can't be bothered talking about it". That was that-I haven't heard from her for the next 3 days.
It wasn't until several months later, it came up in conversation with Nina and  she was convinced that Lara wanted to spend more time with Ella and used that week to "advance" things with her.
Lara messaged me several days later,asking how my trip to Auckland was. She was making small talk, but there was a cryptic remark present. Her exact words were"I had a shitty week, except for Wed,that was beautiful"..Then a bit later, she messaged me:"You know how you feel bad about doing something, but it needs to be done and,ultimately, it is the right thing?".
I had no idea what she was on about and didn't want to press,as she always been cagey about her private life and told me things "in her own time".
Another few days went by, I was lying in my bed one night,feeling lonely and sad. I was thinking about Ellen DeGeneres and Portia Di Rossi (they are both my role models,each one for different reasons) and their relationship. I wished I had one like that. I text Lara and told her I was sad. Her response was quite patronising and  really annoyed me. She told me to"embrace" it and "overcome" it. She also said that envy is a lot like jealousy-disgusting emotion.
I replied that it wasn't envy  I was feeling and  I had  "overcame" quite a few things in my life,thank you very much, and am quite proud of it. It was then I've decided that enough was enough.
I didn't want to act on impulse,though, so took a couple of days to think things through. Then I text Lara.
I told her I felt I had a lot to offer and didn't want to be on some one's back burner or some one's "second choice". I told her what she had to offer (which was,essentially,nothing) wasn't good enough for me. I couldn't wait around for someone to make up their mind.
She replied immediately:"I never asked you to wait for me (which she, actually,had,in saying that she needs time and wants to be with me,"just not now"). I offered you my friendship".
I wasn't in the mood to argue.
Besides, in my mind that was the end of it anyway,so there was no point.I just replied "OK".
What I thought to myself,though was :"How do you imagine this "friendship" happening, I wonder? I don't live in the same country,so what-we  meet for coffee when I'm in town and chat? What about? You're so cagey and secretive,you don't want to share anything with me,so what would be the subject of conversation?
Besides, I am in love with you, so it would be one-sided torture chamber for me, while you would be getting a huge ego boost..."
When I woke up next morning and went to check my emails, I was in for a huge surprise: Lara opened her Facebook wall to me. No explanation,nothing:suddenly it was visible.
So I scrolled through it. What I saw was unsettling.
Lara always claimed that she was a "very private person" and didn't want others "knowing her business". She said that she'd never post personal staff on her FB wall.
Well... I beg to differ. To start with, she has about 400 FB "friends". After I've read some of the posts, it became clear that a lot of those "friends" are people she hardly knows at all or barely met.
For instance, there was a post on her wall from someone saying: "Hi! Thanks for the add. Remind me where we met,though.."
Considering that, it was quite surprising to see some of Lara's wall posts. Things like "I am in love" and "I am watching you sleeping.Limerence" (hmm..limerence.. pretty strong word-it means incredibly intense,overwhelming and all-consuming desire for someone.. I'd say pretty "personal" stuff).
But wait, there was more. Posts like "Touch me" "I can't sleep.But you can.I wonder what you're dreaming of" (that is Lara's trademark,apparently,as she said exactly same thing to me back in October).
Also "Finally had a good night's sleep. No more...errr..that stuff that doesn't make you sleep". That particular one had a comment from Ella:"No!!".. It sounded as if they were talking about having sex, but then Lara veered away from the whole thing by talking about some pills that keep one staying awake.
I really wasn't sure what to think. Back in October Lara explained to me her relationship "status" on Facebook. It read "It's complicated with Ella". I was told that quite a few girls "come sniffing around", but they are into partying all night,drugs and sex and Lara (according to her) wasn't into any of it, so she put that as her relationship status to ward off all those girls. She said Ella and her were just really good friends.
It was somewhat obvious from all the wall posts I saw that Lara was very much into someone (most definitely not me). It almost looked like she finally got it on with Ella, but I wasn't sure. There was a sprinkling of posts saying just "I love you" between them, but I say that to my friends all the time. In fact, I don't think I say it enough. It doesn't mean love in a romantic sense.
Add to that Lara's passionate "I like say things to one's face" statement less than a month ago.. And the fact that this very thing happened to me 20 years ago (see "Life is messy" post) and I didn't want to believe that a woman would do a thing like that to me...
Some of the posts I could easily taken offence to.. Like the one where Lara had a video  Ella Googled: something about showing your love for someone by tattooing your... heart! Yip,that's right-your heart. It had rather long string of comments,one of which was from Ella "That's right,to keep all the dodgy fuckers away". Yes, I realise it wasn't directed at me specifically, but as I was in love with Lara, categorically, I was in the "dodgy fuckers" group. Lara commented something to the effect that she wants to tattoo Ella's name on her ass, so that it's clear that she (Ella) owns it.
I know NOW that Lara and Ella became sexual and romantic partners at that time and the posts were describing their intimate relationship.
But I wasn't sure then and didn't want to believe it and Lara did nothing to clarify the matter.
Opening her Facebook wall to me was Lara's way of telling me she is now with Ella. Apparently, she thought it was perfectly fine way of doing things.
 Lara didn't offer any additional comment and actually messaged me asking if I was still planning to come to Melbourne. I was clinging to hope.
Christmas and birthday are the two biggest and most important holidays for me. I buy loads of presents for everyone and go all out.
I wanted to get something  nice and really special for Lara. She told me about her motorcycle once (she didn't have it any more, but toyed with the idea of buying another one).
I decided to get her a proper bikers jacket. I knew her favorite colour was purple. I searched Internet forever, trying to find a perfect one. I found it in US and had to jump through some hoops to get it shipped to New Zealand.
In the meantime, I messaged Ella to ask what size Lara wore (it's a bit difficult with her, as she is really tall, but very slender). That's the first time Ella showed her passive/aggressive personality.
She replied  straight away, making small talk,saying how she would love to catch up with me in Melbourne, but she gave me the wrong size.
Nothing of great significance happened in the next couple of weeks. Lara messaged me several times and I replied with "nothing" basics. In her messages Lara was making out that she was not doing much at all and nothing was happening in her life ( she made a joke about both of us being "nanas")-what a lie that turned out to be!
I talked to my friend Pip about the situation. Although Pip was the one who encouraged me to give a go to this relationship, she was now saying that I should just leave it. She told me that Lara seemed to be young and clearly didn't know what she wants and that was the last thing I needed.
I've made up my mind. I knew what I had to do when the time came to fly to Melbourne (this was a planned trip and had nothing to do with Lara and everything with making money and my friends who now lived there).
Once I arrived (very early in the morning) I carefully wrapped Lara's Christmas present (the jacket) and wrote her a note. In it, I told her that the present was bought when I thought things were OK between us, but I want her to have it,as it was selected with care specifically for her. I wished her luck in all her future endeavours, personal and professional. As it was too early to check into my hotel, I went over to the parlour where Lara worked (I knew Ella would be on during the day shift) to leave the present there.
When I walked into the parlour, Ella engaged in some small talk with me,asking all sorts of irrelevant questions (like how much money I was making in the other place), took the present for Lara and with that I was gone.
I had some errands to run in that part of town and a couple of hours later got a text from Lara saying something to the effect that she was having "an epic day", but Ella called her to tell that there was a present from me and she went and got it. She seemed to be pleased. Said "WOW" and "Thank you" and that she'd need to buy a motorcycle for sure now. We chatted a bit. She knew where I was (I told her), but didn't offer to have coffee or meet.
So I left it at that.
In the meantime, I discovered that the parlour where I was working would be closed from Dec 24 until Dec 27 for Christmas. I hated to loose the money AND had nothing to do during the holidays, anyway (my friends weren't arriving until Dec 28).
Back in October, when Lara and I discussed our potential relationship, the subject of my work came up and she told me she is "fine with it", but doesn't want us to work together at the same parlour. I wholeheartedly agreed,as I would've felt extremely weird  accepting  money from her (it IS her job to hand it over) to have sex with some guy.
Lara also talked about a WL she used to date before and how things got uncomfortable with jealousy and rumours.
This time, however,was different; I knew Lara wouldn't be working Dec 26, I felt really comfortable in that parlour and didn't want to try and work someplace brand new for just one shift-it would make no sense.
I text Nina (Lara's parlour manager) and asked if I could work just one shift Dec 26. Nina was happy to have me.
For me there was only one snag; I knew Lara was paranoid and I didn't want her to find out that I've been to the parlour and to think that I was trying to somehow "spy" on her, for the lack of a better word.
I asked Nina not to tell ANY staff members that I'd be working. Nina replied straight away asking if everything was OK and if I had a specific staff member in mind. She said it would be difficult to promote me if she wasn't to tell anyone. I didn't reply (was actually in a booking, so couldn't anyway) and got a text from Nina later saying that she didn't mean to pry and  I didn't have to explain anything-I could just come and work.
Couple of days later I was laying in bed late at night and Lara was on my mind. I text her, but the reply came much later, in the morning. She just said she had a night off and was asleep when my message came through.
I wanted clarity. I wanted Lara to sit down with me and tell me the truth, ALL of it. But it wasn't happening.
I also knew I had to tell her I'd be working at her parlour- to avoid all kinds of controversy and misunderstanding (back then I actually cared about how she felt and what she thought).
Another couple of days passed and I received a random text from Lara saying that she is actively looking for someone with a bike, so she could "test-drive" the jacket. I knew she was at work.
Suddenly, my mind was made up. I set my alarm for 3 am and called a taxi.
At 4:30 am I was outside the parlour waiting for Lara to finish her shift. I was sitting on the back of her truck.
I didn't call or text her ahead to tell her I was coming. I thought: in these wee hours, without anyone running interference, she would finally tell me the truth and we'd walk away from each other still friends.
It didn't turn out that way. Lara came out and asked me what I was doing there. I replied "Waiting for you". We stood there awkwardly and made small talk. She asked me how I got there and offered me a ride to my hotel. At first, I declined. I told her I'd be working there DEC 26. First thing out of her mouth was "I am not working that day"..... Oh,contriteness of youth. She DID think I wanted to be there because of her...
I gave her Portia Di Rossi's book-I just read it and thought she might like it. I asked her if she wanted to go out for breakfast. She said "No", she was too tired..
She offered me a ride again and I accepted this time. In the car, we talked about nothing. She kept saying "Just text me, I'd come and have coffee with you"... In about 10 min we were in front of my hotel. I asked if I could give her a hug. She undid her seat belt and hugged me. I told her I missed her. "You missed me?" "Well, just call or text, we'll have coffee'..
I wanted so badly for her to tell me what's going on, to tell me the truth. But she didn't.
She text me later that day. I was at work. The text was rather unpleasant. It read: "Hey, I just wanted to be clear: Dec 26 is the ONLY shift you're going to work in my parlour,right? I feel confronted by your behaviour and  I want nothing further to pursue with you. I am seeing someone ATM".
This was quite a departure from the earlier conversation that morning. And,still, she wouldn't tell me that she was with Ella: she just said "someone" and "at the moment", while,in reality, she was absolutely smitten with Ella, and I'm sure, was hoping for a very long "happily ever after".
I replied that,obviously, I shouldn't come to see her un-announced and it will not happen again. I also said that I gathered from her FB wall posts she was seeing someone.
To me that text message was a clear end of things. I still wasn't sure who it was Lara was seeing. So I took out my little smart phone (I don't use Apple products, so NOT IPhone-my phone is about half the size of one) and looked again through Lara's posts on her FB.
She does post a lot and she gets a lot of comments. So it took me a long time to look through those on my little phone with my long nails.
There was a new one from that night. Lara was bragging about how happy she was and how lovely her new partner's breasts were, I believe, or something to that effect. There were a number of comments and one of them was Lara herself, saying that "Ella's fingers are the only ones in her (Lara's) "pie" these days and she is now "reformed" and abandoned her old womanising and preying ways. This was the first post where names were named and things were spelled out.
Suddenly, I was sick to my stomach. Literally. I was running down the hall to the bathroom,clamping my hand to my mouth and unable to contain the vomit. I knelt in front of the toilet for the next 15 minutes,puking my guts out.
The whole thing was disgusting. It was a deja vu of the nightmare from 20 years ago (see "Life is messy"), only this time a WOMAN did this to me. I didn't want to believe it, yet there it was, staring me in the face.
Thing is, I can understand falling in love with one's best friend, I really do. Matters of the heart are unpredictable, we are all complex human beings and things do happen unexpectedly.
Life is never ending stream of highs and lows,but a person is defined as the kind of human being they are on the way they handle those highs and lows.
After that self-righteous speech Lara gave me about saying things to one's face, after she told me how "private and shy" she was, how she would never post personal stuff on her FB wall (yet there was that post about "fingers in her pie" for about 900 of hers and Ella's "closest friends" to see and muse about), I felt used, lied to and deceived.
It was 3 days before Christmas, I was all alone in the city where I didn't have any friends yet,  my support system was oceans away, I was staying in a crappy little hotel and my tiny room didn't even had a bathroom (there were common bathrooms down the hall).
Lara knew all that and yet she chose to handle the situation  the way she did.
Bottom line: I treated her like a princess and she treated me like shit.
I was absolutely devastated and heartbroken. I spent most of that night texting my friend Pip. Once again, Pip was my rock; she showed support and tried to make me feel better as much as she could.
I deleted Lara from my FB,as I truly didn't want to see anymore "tattooed hearts,limerence and fingers in the pie" posts.
Facebook is a great tool for keeping in touch with one's friends,especially the ones far away. It could,however, be extremely damaging to romantic relationship. It adds unnecessary unpleasantness to already bad situation. If and when I have a girlfriend again (I am understandably cautious these days and proceed with extreme care), we, most definitely, will NOT be FB friends.
When I woke up next morning, the whole thing popped back into my mind and I found myself,once again,rushing to the bathroom with the hand clamped to my mouth-it was still making me sick.
Yet I refused to believe I've made such a gross mistake in character judgement. I had a lot of respect for Lara and was unwilling to let it go. I gave her the benefit of the doubt.
I thought she would at least write me a note or send a Christmas card, just making sure that I was OK, maybe saying "sorry" for the way things turned out and offering some sort of explanation.
Nope. Didn't happen. Christmas and New Year came and went and I heard nothing from Lara.
I kept myself entertained by working,shopping,movies and theater. I tried not to dwell on the heartbreak,some days with more success than others.
I never went to work in Lara's parlour on Dec 26-I just couldn't bring myself to be in that place for any length of time-I was afraid I'd be sick again,as memories would surely flood in. I text Nina and told her I had a food poisoning.
Days and weeks went by. I was on my way to work one day,having my customary morning coffee and muffin. I was checking my emails on my phone. I saw a FB "Inbox" message from Lara. My breath caught.
Message read:"Laughing... You deleted me. Anyway, I read the book you gave me. I got lots out of it. Thanks".
I was so angry, I was,literally,seeing red (red dots were swimming in front of my eyes). I took some deep breaths and decided to give myself some time before replying.
I went to work, changed,put my make-up on,powered the computer.
My anger was not subsiding.
This is a good example of why it is important and healthy to NOT bottle up your feelings and talking things through as they occur. Otherwise it would all come to the surface unexpectedly at some point.
In my case, all the shit from 20 years ago came up. That situation was very similar, but I've never told any of those people how I felt. In fact, I've never really told anyone.
And so I felt like letting it all go. I sat down to write a message to Lara and I was so angry, I was shaking.
I am not at all proud of that message. Yes, I was very angry and very hurt, but it's no excuse.
To use a gun analogy, I could taken out a 22 caliber pistol and take one shot-it would have been sufficient.
Instead, I pulled out a Glock semi-auto and laid on the trigger until the clip was empty. I said some truly mean things and I was most definitely aiming to hurt.
Lara and I engaged in a text fight that went on for hours. To be honest, all I really wanted was for her to say "sorry". But she wouldn't.
She kept talking about how I deleted her from FB, so she had to "look through over 500 people to find me" (which was a blatant lie-although I did delete her, she just used the string of previous messages we've exchanged-I could clearly see the whole thing),about how she didn't know where to send a Christmas card (although she knew which parlour I worked at and she dropped me in front of my hotel,so knew exactly where I was staying). Then she said she lost her phone around Christmas time and didn't have my number... It went on and on. She told me that she wanted to tell me "face-to-face" (and I wanted to know exactly WHEN was she planning to do that). She said that because she did it "her way" and not mine, it doesn't mean it was the wrong way.
I wanted to scream:"Sweetheart, never mind "your way" or "my way"-there are commonly accepted "bad" and "good" ways of doing things and I think we both know which category "your way" is falling into".
I didn't say it, though. I was trying to make her understand that she hurt me by the way she HANDLED the matter. But she wasn't hearing me. She just wanted to be right.
She even accused me of "slinking into background" instead of "discussing issues with her"...
In the end, she text me saying that she doesn't want to talk about any of it anymore,as we both think we're right. I didn't reply,as there was,clearly, no point.
The problem with bottled up anger is it's like a Genie: you feel elated when you finally let it out,as it's been festering inside you for days,months and even years,poisoning you, but after a while,reality sets in and if you have any redeemable value at all as human being, you feel like crap,because you know you hurt someone.
It happened to me. Few weeks passed, I was back in NZ. I thought about Lara often. I felt really bad about what I said.
Here I was, pointing the finger at her for the way she handled things and I myself didn't handle the aftermath any better. Mean-spiritness and unkindness never solved anything and didn't inspire a single person to "better" themselves.
I felt terrible. I wrote Lara a message saying that I hated the way we left things, that I should not have said what I said and asked her to forgive me.
She replied with actual copied and pasted quote of my vile message,saying she could never forgive someone who said that to her. She added that she didn't want me to contact her again.
I told her that I would respect her wishes, apologised again and tried to explain that she wasn't some "flight of fancy" to me, that I cared about her and that's why I was so hurt by what she's done.
Lara kept me on her FB long enough to read that last message and then promptly blocked me.
So that was that.
I thought about Lara a lot and often in the following weeks. I came to realisation that I felt quite strongly about her. I was very much in love with her and I truly cared. I also knew that the whole thing was doomed from the start-the timing was very unfortunate for both of us. I don't think I could done anything differently to achieve the outcome I was hoping for.
I missed her and I wasn't even sure why: we never gone to bed, never even kissed,we didn't spend that much time together... But love is funny that way: more often than not there is no logical explanation for the way it is. It's just IS.
It was time for my next trip to Melbourne.
 I've decided to split my time between Melbourne and Wellington pretty much half and half to maximise my income (that decision had nothing to do with Lara, at the end of the day I'm all about "bottom line",as no one will take care of you if you don't take care of yourself).
Upon arrival, I stopped by my parlour and was told that there was a huge flash flood in Melbourne the day prior and entire first floor of the establishment was flooded (about knee deep).
I was concerned about Lara. I text her to ask if she was OK. I just wanted to know that she was alright. There was no response for about half an hour and then I got "Who is this" message from her.
I just threw my phone on the bed in disgust. Of course, she knew who it was-she just wanted to play mind games and I grew tired of those.
I didn't hear from Lara for the next 2 weeks. Then one night, when I was working,there was FB "Inbox" message from her-apparently she "un-blocked" me. She asked me if I have spoken to Nina (her parlour manager) about her at all.
I told her I haven't  and couldn't imagine any context in which I would need to.
She actually sent me a reply thanking me for taking the time to answer. It was nice: she showed class and manners. Clearly, she wasn't "raised in a barn". I wrote back saying that we are adults and should handle life in adult manner.
From that message I assumed (correctly,as I discovered later) that Lara was in trouble at work.
Then, on Feb 22 I read about the devastating earthquake that destroyed Christchurch. The news was extremely unsettling to me.
I thought about Lara immediately:although she told me that she was from Auckland, she lived in NZ most of her life and I wasn't sure if any of her family or close friends were affected. I struggled with texting her though-I really didn't want to get another flippant response.
I did contact her,after all-2 days later. I told her if anyone close to her was affected, I would be able to provide temporary housing for them and help in any way I could.
She replied that her family was OK and thanked me. Gave me a text "kiss" (X) as well.
I went back to NZ a few days later. Nothing really changed. I still thought about Lara a lot. I text her late one night just to say "I miss you". I know I shouldn't have, but...
She just wanted to play more "head games",though: first she replied "Ben"?. I said "No,not Ben". Then came "John"? "No,not John,either", I said. "You sure seem to have a lot of male friends". That effectively ended the conversation.
In the meantime, I had to make some decisions (see "Earthquake" post) in view of what was happening in NZ and the future of the country and economy.
I was,for all intents and purposes,changing and restructuring my whole life. I was making arrangements to move into a smaller,"share" place in Wellington in order to minimize expenses and getting a permanent place in Melbourne (another "share").
I also had to re-view the way I worked, to maximize my income potential.
The more I thought about it, the more resentful I grew about the fact that Lara didn't want me to work in "her" parlour-I used to do pretty good in there during the day. Besides, remembering that message, I thought that Lara may not even work in there anymore. So I've called that parlour every shift for a week to see who answers the phone and figured that,indeed, Lara wasn't there anymore.
I was back in Melbourne by the end of March. The weather was gorgeous and I really have fallen in love with the city-I felt so good there.
I contacted Nina (Lara's parlour manager) and she told me to drop by for a chat. After some small talk I asked her if I could work a couple of days a week, but said that I didn't want to work with either Lara or Ella.
Nina said that Lara was no longer there... And then, quite unexpectedly, she just started talking to me about her.
That conversation went on for over an hour, with Nina talking most of the time. She told me that, in her opinion, Lara was "borderline criminally psychopathic", that she (Nina) was literally sick to her stomach ( sounded familiar..LOL) for weeks once she realised what Lara was up to in her parlour. Nina said she trained Lara and put her in the position of trust and power and Lara abused it and took advantage of it by systematically shagging her way through "merchandise" (working girls).
Apparently Lara entertained herself by sleeping and/or flirting with a number of working girls in both parlours she worked at. She preyed on them, set them up against each other and lied to everyone about it. She created quite unhealthy working environment by lying to Nina about girls and getting them fired.
Nina also told me that Lara flirted with her quite pointedly when she was being trained.
Nina was quite passionate and there were certain things that startled me. It seemed, she was paying very close attention to Lara's comings and goings and her habits. For instance, she mentioned that Lara tends to wear same colour nail polish as her current "conquest"... That she knows Ella and Lara are "getting it on" judging by identical nail polish colour and the fact that Lara had her car covered in locust while Ella was talking about going through locust "cloud" while taking a trip home for Christmas. Nina drew the conclusion that those two went together.
Nina talked about Lara's multiple girlfriends,her manipulative behaviour,her ego trips. She told me she often set her alarm for the wee hours of the morning to monitor Lara at work.
Conversation was unsettling to me. Although I know Lara has some serious issues, I don't believe  she is a sociopath, which is what Nina was saying.
Next day I text Lara. I told her I had unsettling conversation and I wanted to meet. I asked her to "bring honesty to the table" this time.
Lara replied with her trademark "Interesting"-she says that when she is at a loss. She then proceeded to tell me that I must met Troy (I honestly never had and I don't know who that person is). She vehemently denied "preying" on working girls. She said that she "dated" Troy for a few months and "saw" me a "couple of times". That last one rubbed me the wrong way,as from what you've read so far, it is clear it wasn't just "seeing each other a couple of times" that went on between us.
Then she tried to manipulate me into telling her who my source was by saying that she "is not prepared" to meet with me otherwise. I told her it was fine and I'm quite content to leave it. I got no response.
I was surprised: Lara always likes to have "the last word" and it was unusual for her to let ME have it.
Well,here comes the bizarre part-I swear, I am NOT making this up. As it turned out, Lara didn't let me have the last word,after all. In fact, she sent three text messages telling me that she is still with Ella and if any meeting was to take place between us, Ella should be present. She basically told me to contact Ella and ask her permission. She ended by saying that she hoped Melbourne was good to me and sending her "regards".
Believe it or not, I did NOT get those last three messages until almost three weeks later,after Easter! Good 'ol Vodafone! I have no idea how it happened, but it did.
It,actually, made a huge difference. Have I gotten these messages in time, I would've probably said something cutting. Also, when Lara text me three weeks later and asked to meet, I probably wouldn't and,instead, issued more sarcastic remarks.
As it happens, those came through AFTER our meeting.
But I am getting ahead of myself.
3 weeks have gone by, I was walking to work at "Lara's" parlour and saw what looked like her car smack in the middle of the car park-right by the front door. I wasn't sure,as I thought I remembered her driving a different make, but didn't think much of it.
I received a text from Nina an hour later, telling me that Lara's car is parked up front and she has contacted her and threatened to have it towed. I said I had no issues with Lara- she just really disappointed me, but it was neither here, nor there.
That parking lot is, actually,quite large (about 3 dozen spaces, all of them free) and to this day I am not sure why Lara chose to park her car right in front of the door. She told me later she spent the night in her friend's house down the street, but it still doesn't explain why she didn't park it somewhere in the corner of that lot vs at the front entrance of the parlour.
I remember emailing my friend about it that night, wondering what the hell it was all about.
Again, to this day I am not sure-another one of those mysteries I would never know the answer to..LOL..
Next day was Easter Friday. I was in CBD,having my coffee and muffin,having text chats with my friends.
Suddenly,there was a text from Lara. No greeting, just "When are going back to NZ?". I told her and asked why she wanted to know. She said she wants to meet.
We did-couple of hours later. Conversation was easy-it was like we just picked up where we left off. I told her what I was up to these few months, she told me about her new job.
I told her what I wanted to tell her 3 weeks ago-about my conversation with Nina. She was indignant: she told me none of that was true and she doesn't know why Nina would say such things about her.
I asked her point blank if she ever dated Nina,flirted with her or implied a possibility of a relationship with her. Lara emphatically shook her head "No".
Then Lara started telling me why she went back to cheffing (she is a qualified chef). She craftily worked into the conversation that her relationship with Ella wouldn't last, that she hopes to "have a proper relationship" one day.
She also talked about Ella dating two other guys, hastily adding that how she (Lara) wants it.
It didn't sound that way to me,though. I felt Lara was resentful. Despite all her talk of "open relationship" , I think she wanted to be exclusive with Ella.
We talked for about an hour. It felt good. Nice and easy. I really enjoyed it.
I walked Lara to the tram and she said that maybe she'd see me again before I left for NZ.
I text her a week later,asking which pub she worked at and if I could come sample her new menu. She waited few hours before replying. When she did text me, it was in true "Lara" fashion. Instead of saying "yes" or "no", she told me that she submitted her resignation in that place and new chef was starting that day. She added that she didn't want to work for a while and was thinking about going home to NZ for a long stay. She said she needed to recuperate after what I've told her the week before re. conversation with Nina. She thanked me.
I told her she worked hard for a long time,she deserved some time off. I added that I have a lot of respect for her, that she reminds me of myself at that age and I apologized again for what I said  back in January. I gave her the path to my blog and asked her to read "Life is messy" entry as a way of explanation.
Another week has gone and I was going home. I text Lara and asked if she would like to have a drink with me before I left. She replied: coffee first thing next morning. We agreed on time and place.
She text few hours later, changing the location,explaining that she had to pick up her mail.
Next morning, when I was on my way to meet her, she text again, saying she had a flat tyre and asking if we could meet in the city instead. She was late 10 min. Just more manipulation and control on her part.
No sooner has she sat down, she asked me point blank: "So how come you wanted to see me?I want to know what THIS is". She wanted to define our meeting, to put a label on it,it seemed.
I told her I just wanted to see her and she could said "No" if she didn't want to meet.
She replied that it was good talking to me last time. She then proceeded to tell me that back in November, Ella and I "had about the same to offer" (that really annoyed me,as I didn't realise it was a competition or an auction with Lara as "buyer",choosing the goods), but Ella was here, in Melbourne, and I was in NZ and Lara didn't know if I was coming back (which is not at all true,as I offered to come back every 2 months and she said she couldn't accept it).
She said that things were "building up" with Ella for about 6 months before "it just happened"...
She also said that Ella didn't want her (Lara) talking to me or her other girlfriend. And yet Ella was carrying on with other two guys herself.
Lara did sound bitter. Again, despite the caveat about her strong belief in "open" relationship, she blurted "I cut 2 people out of my life for her and she does this".
She told me she is still not over what I've said back in January, that she believes I AM sorry, but not sure it will not happen again.
She said she wants me in her life, but is weary.
I was talking,too. I brought up the whole Facebook unpleasantness. Lara conceded that it "probably wasn't the best way" to tell me.
I asked her how she expected me to be friends when I was head over heels in love with her. "Why?" Lara asked. That's something she kept asking from the very beginning. I am not sure what she wanted to hear.
"I don't know" I said "Chemistry, I guess". I asked her if she read my blog. She said "No". Again, I should have known right then and there that she had absolutely no interest in me-she just didn't care.
In the end, Lara asked me when I was coming back to Melbourne and said she'd see me then.
I walked her to the tram stop and we had a nice big hug before she jumped on the tram.
This was one last time Lara manipulated me. Again, I let her.
 I am guessing, things were not going great with Ella and Lara needed a 'boost" for her ego and self-esteem, so she did this.
At the time, I was elated. I felt renewed hope. I went home with a big smile on my face.
I thought about my conversation with Lara a lot. I wrote a blog entry about relationship equality, basically outlining my expectations.
I also wrote Lara "Inbox" message on FB. I told her that I loved her, that I was in love with her since the moment I saw her. I explained that I've never told her before because I wanted to make sure-I didn't want it to be some "rebound" gig or some mindless shag. I said I felt just as strongly about her as I did back when I first met her. I promised that she could always count on me to "have her back". I asked her to read my blog entry about relationship expectations.
 It was quite long and emotional message. I didn't proof-read or edit it,didn't even do a spell-check. I just sent it the way it came out; raw and unedited.
Lara replied the next day saying that the writing was too small on the new updated FB and could I copy and paste to her email. I did as she requested.
That night I had one of my "premonition" feelings. It wasn't a good one.
So I wasn't really all that surprised when I read a message from Lara next morning.
"I am sorry, I have no reply to what you've said. I love Ella. We are two of a kind. Things will work out between us even if we don't stay together". She added something to the effect that Ella challenges her intellectually and she doesn't recall anyone else doing it in quite the same way. "I don't want a serious relationship and Ella gives me this" she finished by saying.
By then, my heart was broken so many times,I couldn't even pick up the pieces anymore, so the message wasn't a great big devastating blow.
It was honest,direct and final. Delivered about 8 months late-she really should have told me all this back in Oct-Nov,as she clearly was hopelessly in love with Ella and was willing to be with her on any terms and put up with all and any of Ella's shit,but... Lara finally told me the truth.
I went on about my business that day and had a nice dinner prepared by my friend-the amazing French chef.
I went to bed and slept great until I woke up with a start about 4 am.
It's hard to explain what I felt; it was a heartache, not quite physical, but not purely emotional,either. It was rather a combination of both. With profound sadness I realised that I will never see Lara again. I said my goodbye's. It was done.
When I was young, I was trying to figure out how to do everything, it was constant trial and error. But now I have more experience. There are life skills I've mastered and can now do things pretty gracefully.
I used to be the ultimate control freak with my emotions. I believed that there were certain ways I was supposed to feel in response to things-like, I shouldn't be angry about that because the person was not a good one, or I shouldn't be so upset when someone treated me badly because the whole thing "wasn't meant to be" or because "she wasn't right for me".
But that only intensified whatever I was feeling. As I got older, I've learned to accept the way I feel. Rather than fighting certain emotions, I tell myself: I am upset about this. That's OK. That's human. And giving in to what I am feeling actually helps me to move on faster.
Few weeks later I had another one of my  "premonitions" again. That one hit me very unexpectedly: I was actually in the middle of a booking, Lara the furthest thing from my mind. Suddenly, I had this overwhelming foreboding feeling about her. I couldn't place it,couldn't describe it. It was very intense. I couldn't shake it.
I still had that same feeling when I woke up next morning. I emailed Lara and asked her if she was OK. I asked her to please tell me the truth.
She replied with some light-hearted remark. Said she was fine,as she doesn't smoke and hardly drinks,even put on a few kg's after that stint as a chef. I left it at that.
Few more weeks past and I was left in charge of my parlour for a few days-the owner went for a short holiday.
As I was trying to work 4 different phones at the same time,manage the bookings AND drive the girls to the outcalls, I randomly thought about Lara.
I text her saying that I could use someone with sexy voice and skills to "reel" the punters in, asked her if she's been home to NZ yet. She replied she was planning a visit later.
That was the extend of it.
Several hours later,when I got home,there was an email from Lara.
She told me she's been thinking about stuff. She said she believed that it was because of ME she lost her job at the parlour. She admitted there were other contributing factors, but she believed it was mainly because I told Nina I didn't want to work with either Lara or Ella.
She said that's because of that she didn't have any trust for me, felt uncomfortable being friends with me and  didn't "wish" to be contacted. She added she felt we each said our piece regarding what went on in the past year when we met last and she didn't want to discuss it any further.
And just like that, with a single email, I fell out of love with her. I couldn't believe she was trying to blame me for loosing her job. I didn't know if she really was in such deep denial about her own actions and unable to accept responsibility or was just trying to "mind-fuck" me. Either way it didn't matter. I lost all respect for her.
To me,respect is fundamental for ANY relationship-whether personal,professional,romantic or just friendship. Without respect, there is no basis, no foundation.
I didn't reply to that message-there was nothing left to say. We've said everything there was to say to each other. For once and,finally, we were on the same page.
I did contact Lara one more time-about a month later,when I was in Melbourne. I had a "bad" client who hurt me. Nothing major, but my skin was broken. It was handled, but I felt the parlour did not back me up, didn't support me and did not assure my safety.
Lara asked me once,long time ago if I understood the difference between fantasy and reality (we were talking about "ideal" partner)... Well, the day that client hurt me, I suddenly realized what the difference was. In my heart, for no reason at all, I felt that if Lara and I were together and working at the same  parlour, she would've kicked that guy's ass, would never refund his money (or even part of it) and would keep me safe. Simultaneously,in my mind, I knew with absolute clarity that no such thing would've happened, even if we WERE together or worked in the same place-Lara would worry about keeping her job and probably do exactly the same thing my receptionist did.Fantasy vs. reality. Humans ARE complex creatures.
I went home that day, crawled into bed and had a couple glasses of wine. I text Lara  to tell her what happened. I said I knew we were done and never really even started, I knew she didn't want to talk to me, but all I could think about was her when that incident happened. I didn't know why. I really didn't. I added that I had nothing to do with her loosing the her job and if she was completely honest with herself, she would know why that happened.
For some reason,  texting her made me feel better. It just did. So sue me.
I knew I could get a nasty response from her and kind of braced myself for it, but, to her credit, she didn't say anything at all. I am grateful for that.
So this is it. The whole story. Someone asked me the other day if I hate her. I honestly don't.
 I wish I could be this gracious person and say that I wish "nothing but the best" for her. But I don't. However, I don't wish her anything bad, either. I am just...indifferent, I guess. I don't care what happens to her anymore.
I don't think she is a sociopath,as Nina says. She is just a "little girl lost". If she doesn't face her issues they could,ultimately,seriously affect her life, just like my ex's pretty much destroyed hers (personal and professional).
Lara has a need to be loved. By everyone. The only way she knows how to achieve that in a fastest possible way is to flirt with people and lead them on, make them fall in love with her. When she does it to her peers, consequences are hurt feelings,complaints to employers and rumours.
I told her in my last message that just because she's gay, she is not immune from the pressures we all face in the workplace. What I meant is if you want to flirt with your boss (whether it's a man or a woman), you have to be prepared to either "put out" or deal with consequences.
Ella,however, has no redeemable qualities as a human being, in my opinion. You know how some kids put a magnifying glass next to ants and direct a ray of sunlight through it, just to "see what happens"? I think Ella did just that. She knew about the kind of year I had,as we talked a lot in the beginning (Lara knew nothing about it at first) and she egged me on to hit on Lara still, just to "see what happens",while she was fully aware that Lara had romantic feelings towards her.
When she thought that some sort of a relationship might emerge between us, she immediately jumped into bed with Lara and promptly told her to ditch me and the other girl (power trip,ego boost,control,etc).
Ella continued to enjoy herself while she added two guys to the mix (more power tripping and mind-fucking). She did all that as a science experiment and to satisfy her ego. I don't think she has any true feelings for anyone involved. She also might be compensating for the fact that "the love of her life" chose his dream job over her-I am sure it didn't help her self-esteem at all.
I am not at all "an oracle of gospel truth". I only present things from my perspective and based on the facts available to me. I certainly don't have ALL the information. I am sure if you asked other participants, they might disagree with my version of events. There are always three sides to every story: mine,hers and what really happened...LOL..
We all fancy ourselves as clever and think we can tell when we are being "spun a line" or being given a faithful account. But none of us has perfect judgement and nor do any of us live in a world of unarguable absolutes. We may never find out "who done it", if,indeed, anyone actually "done" anything and it may never matter.

THE END