Another job interview, another gym session, another cup of coffee. Well, sounds like a routine to me! So far so good.
Today I turned down a job that I was offered. Maybe I should grab the first one in sight, I really don’t know. But… I just wasn’t ready yet. It didn’t feel right. I don’t know what I’m waiting for. A miracle? A great job, I guess?
I still do not miss going to work every morning. What I do miss is having people around. Talking to someone every day, being part of something. I could call my friends or meet my family but having co-workers is somehow different.
Fortunately I can meet my ex-colleagues and we are having dinner together with some of them tonight. I am heading out of the door even as we speak.
There’s six of us today. Two men and four women. Not that it matters, just saying.
First there’s a lot of talk about work. It sounds a bit weird listening to the others discuss their projects and complain about their bosses. Sounds like a far away land to me.
Being unemployed has made me realise that now everything is up to me. If you have a job it’s so convenient to blame everything on the boss or lousy work arrangement or whatever. Now I cannot blame my problems on anyone else but me. It sucks.
I’m on a budget now so I decide to skip the meal and take a glass of wine instead. And then a second one. It’s a joyful evening but it’s the middle of the week and soon everyone starts to leave. I don’t feel like going home yet. It’s not like someone is waiting for me so I can enjoy my night out. Luckily for me there’s someone else who wants to stay a little longer.
It’s Jim, our IT guy. He proposes to share a dessert. Why not? I can’t say that Jim is my good friend, but we’ve worked together for about three years and he has always helped me with computer-related stuff. Even outside work. I guess we are kind of friends.
You are saying that men and women cannot be friends? I assure you they can. I like to hang out with Jim but I am not attracted to him. I may even flirt but that’s just for fun. I like to flirt with anybody (not everyone gets this right, though…). So, friends….
We talk, we laugh. After the third glass of wine I ask him: “Have you seen the movie My Best Friend’s Wedding?”
“You know how they had this kind of agreement that if they are not married by the time they’re forty they will marry each other?”
“I was just thinking… You know. We have known each other for a while…. Why not have a backup?”
“The thing is…”
I know this look on his face. He doesn’t want to be my backup!
I don’t know what to say. Silence.
“Why didn’t I know this?” I demand.
“I kind of thought you knew.”
“No.” Now I’m totally sulking. How come I didn’t see this? I’m even thinking I was attracted to him after all.
“Lucky you.” I mope.
“What do you mean?”
“’cause your life is so much easier. You don’t have to think about marriage or kids or any of that. You can just focus on your career!”
“Why on earth do you think that? Because I’m gay I don’t have human problems? And we kind of can get married now.” He seems upset.
“I’m sorry,” I sigh. “I have just always thought that life as a gay is so much easier. You can be like Tom Ford and design beautiful clothes and live with a guy and be happy. Just his work and this guy, what’s his name….”
“Richard Buckley,” he helps me out. “And they have a child together now!”
“You’re right. I actually knew that they had a child.”
“But how come you work in IT not in…. I don’t know….”
“Not all gays work in fashion.”
“I guess…. But you do dress too well for an IT guy.”
“My boyfriend is in fashion.”
“See! He IS in fashion!”
We both laugh now.
“So you have a boyfriend. You’re not alone. Is it serious?” I ask.
“Pretty much. Don’t look so sad! You’re not alone – you have a boyfriend, too.”
“I know. But he’s so far away and I don’t know…. It feels like we’re literally on different sides of the sea. It’s like I’m starting to forget about him. Sometimes I think that he has forgotten about me already…”
“You are just worried. It’s hard being apart. It’s OK to feel this way.”
“Yes. Hey, you wanna have coffee?”
“Why not. I guess I shouldn’t worry about you wanting to come to my place for “coffee”. I like that. Actually I’m very glad that I finally have a gay friend now!”
“So what, I’m like a trophy to you?”
“Kind of. Every girl needs a gay friend. That’s what I’ve heard.”
“Well, I’m not going shopping with you. I hate shopping.”
“I’ll probably need another gay friend for that, then.”
We laugh again.
I didn’t get a backup husband tonight but I did get a gay friend. Life is full of surprises.
To be continued next Monday.