When Guido and I arrived home from Spain last weekend I sat for a moment silently staring around our tiny loft above the café. After a week of Mediterranean sun, open countryside, and sea air, all I could see were red topped London buses dizzily whizzing past our first floor window and an apartment stuffed with the detritus of life. Let me re-phrase that last sentence. All I could see was an apartment stuffed with the detritus of Guido’s life.
Propped up against the back door was Guido’s mountain bike, two broken pumps, muddy running shoes, a ripped chef’s torque hat, weeks of unread copies of the Sunday Times newspaper and a precariously stacked bundle of twenty French cookbooks. They’re printed in French. Despite being unable to actually speak French, Guido remains undaunted. In fact he’ll often pick one out at random and casually thumb through it excitedly in our bed at night. Then drool. It’s what’s they call food porn. Though it’s a little depressing knowing that whilst I lie as seductively as I possibly can next to him, my husband is still more interested in coq au vin.
When we were abroad my architect friend Ruben left a message on our ansaphone. He offered me his old drawing board. I’ve often fantasied about sketching on a proper architect’s drawing board at home, but we’ve never had the space.
“We haven’t got the space,” said Guido when I told him.
“You could padlock your mountain bike downstairs in the courtyard,” I said.
“Well I hope that’s not being written into your blog,” said Guido frowning, “you never know who reads that. On the face of it your readers may appear to be the sort of people who enjoy hearing all about the exciting adventures of two gay men living in South London, but for all you know they could turn out to be unscrupulous locals with big chain cutters.”
I very much doubt the criminal element of Bermondsey wait with baited breath for my next post. But if they do, and they can keep their thieving hands off Guido’s bike, then I’d be more than happy to offer them a vintage copy of, Entertaining Parisian Style. It’s a bit tattered so I’d throw in a couple of second hand bicycle pumps if anyone’s interested? The offer’s on the table.
On Sunday, the board and paper arrived and battle lines were drawn before even one sketch took place.
On Monday night when I got home Guido had inexplicably scrawled U-BENDERS on it, which turned out to be the name and telephone number of an emergency plumber. Trust me, you don’t want to know.
On Tuesday night when I got home he’d scribbled the words GONE TO FOOTBALL THERE’S AN ENCHILADA IN THE FRIDGE IF YOU’RE INTERESTED? at the bottom corner. Just for the record, I was interested.
Last night when I got home he’d drawn a huge smiley face slap bang in the middle of the board. Underneath he’d written DON’T WORRY I’VE REMEMDERED THE VANILLA CUSTARD FOR FRIDAY NIGHT! Given our history with mayo I predict a very interesting weekend ahead.
But does Guido really think I’m so naïve that I’d consider ditching my drawing board space for his bike just because he’s now promising to drive me insane with uncontrollable desires and passionate urges connected with runny custard?