Every time I get on the Eurostar or fly anywhere alone, a sick part of me wonders (even though you all know my theory about the L-word*) if this will be the journey that I am seated next to the Love of My Life...
On Saturday, when I was waiting at Gare du Nord for my train (I got there an hour early, having learnt my lesson last time), my eyes were drawn to a man sat a few seats away from me, because he was doing a big yawn and stretching across three seats. I recognised him from somewhere... then I realised, when I went to London for my RADA audition, he was sat next to me on the Eurostar and when I got off the train he chased after me because I'd left my pen behind.
I was sure it was him. I remember sneaking sideways glances at him on the train because I couldn't see if he was good looking or not. Unfortunately I was asleep for most of that journey and kept waking myself up by making funny little mouse noises...
I did fancy him a little bit, but I am suffering from a mild spell of Mass Boy Hysteria at the moment so fancy most people. But then he ran after me to give me the pen... a normal person would think 'that was nice of him' and forget about it, but I recognised the scene from the movie of my fantasy romantic life that plays in my head throughout long journeys, editing itself as I watch, constantly rewinding and fast-forwarding to the best parts...
She looks down at the pen, confused for a moment. Then she feels his large hand stroke her shiny hair.
"Oh my god," he says, turning red, "I did that without thinking. I couldn't stop myself."
She mumbles something and walks away, her head tingling as she remembers the soft pressure of his hand.
"You remind me of my cat." he shouts after her.
She turns round, a big smile on her face. He walks towards her and she waits for him, purring inside.
Bizarrely, the above scene has never happened in real life. (Once somebody told me that I look like Maria from 'The Aristocats'. They were being deadly serious so I'm inclined to believe them. They had taken magic mushrooms, though.)
Anyway, when it was finally time to board the Eurostar, guess who was in the seat next to mine? Pen Man.
I wondered if he recognised me too and if he believed in Signs and Fate. We were both reading books and he kept laughing to himself- he likes books and laughing, I like books and laughing...
Then two Australian people in the seats across the aisle struck up a conversation. They didn't know each other but it just so happened that they were from the same city. The guy split his time between London and New York oh my god no way so did the girl what a crazy coincidence, I love that bar, I don't know that area you'll have to show me round...
I realised that this would be the journey that some other girl met the love of her life. They chatted on and on in an annoying way for the entire journey. I had to close my book and put my headphones in just to drown out the sound of the guy's boasting:
"I have two sofas and a double bed in my room, it's pretty sweet." (That's an actual quote.)
They were both irritating and privileged, but I'm happy for them: even rich kids need 'love', I suppose.
Why do I always found myself sat behind two complete strangers who instantly click and spend the whole journey engaged in embarrassing, self-conscious 'banter' and 'flirting'? It's happened to me on the coach TWICE... at least the train only takes a couple of hours.
When we got to London, they were making everyone show their tickets for Some Reason and I'd left mine on my seat like a dickhead, so a woman had to question me and even though my passport looks like a counterfeit made by a wet dog and I couldn't remember when I'd last been in England or when I was coming back, she let me through. Unfortunately she didn't pass on the message and this HUGE woman, built like Miss Trunchbull, stopped me from getting past her and yelled in my face:
"TICKETS! TICKETS! BILLETS! BILLETS!"
Before I could answer the other woman hurried over and explained about my ticket, but Miss Trunchball's eyes followed me suspiciously as I walked past. I felt like an illegal immigrant who had been hiding in the engine.
Lauren met me off the Eurostar and we went for lunch at Navajo Joe near Covent Garden and then, even though Lauren was really hungover, she dragged herself round the shops with me. In Central London. On a Saturday.
I really wanted to look in Topshop, as I didn't get a chance last time. I'd forgotten how insanely big the Topshop flagship is on Oxford Street. At one point I got a bit tripped out and felt like we were in a club- I'd barely slept, they were playing techno music and there were people pushing past us in all directions.
It was a good shopping trip- I was dreading looking for new jeans (if they fit me on the hips, they're too tight on the bum and if my bum fits into them then the waistband is too loose and sticks out from my hips like clown pants) but I bought the first pair I tried on and... I found another magic ring!!
I was looking at all the sparkly rings, dismissing them because they didn't look like 'real magic' but then I spotted one that looked similar to my Magic Ring. I picked one up and looked into its turquoise depths... there was real magic in there, I couldn't believe how lucky I was! Lauren agreed it was just like my other ring, only more magic in a way because it was handmade in Africa (it wasn't actually a Topshop ring, it was one of the concessions) and each ring was slightly different. Also it is magic how I managed find exactly what I was looking for in the sprawling chaos that is the Topshop flagship.
Shit I have to go and teach now. Today I was supposed to be learning a new speech for my next audition as well... Oops.
*How it is a Made Up Thing and how, when people smile at me condescendingly and say 'You say that because you've never been in love', they are wrong because I 'love' my mum and I 'love' my eyebrows (sisters, not twins™) but I'm telling you it's just a word and what I actually feel towards my mum and my eyebrows is a strong mixture of emotions including attachment, concern and fondness.