My phone buzzed across the nightstand, making an annoyingly loud sound as it vibrated against a £1 coin. My head throbbed and I squinted at the clock. ‘Shit.’ I groaned. I had about thirty minutes to get to work. Between getting dressed and travel it would take me at least 40.
I rolled off the bed and grabbed whatever I could find to wear, brushed my teeth, brushed up the makeup from the night before, and ran out the door. It was Friday so most of my day would involve being sat in meetings all day. I walked in and my tardiness went unnoticed. I put everything down and sat at my desk, reaching for the glass of water I had left there the day before. Before I knew it I was sitting in a meeting, hoping that I wasn’t emitting the scent of gin.
The meeting finally ended and I went back to my desk. I pulled my phone out and there were three text messages. I frowned as I entered my passcode. They all were from the guy I had snogged in Abacus the evening before.
09:51 [My name] it was very nice to meet you. I’m looking forward to seeing you again xxx
10:17 I’m really horny this morning. Wish you were here
I looked around to make sure no one was somehow looking over my shoulder. All I could think of was what would have happened had I had my phone with me in the meeting and that text had come up in a pop up message on my iPhone. Awkward. A bit forward. I thought to myself. I mean, I had just met this person. Granted eighty-percent of our time was spent kissing each other, but still. I shrugged, he was French, maybe it was a French thing. I put a lot of things he does down to maybe just being a French thing, so I’ll call him Frenchie.
10:56 Really want to see you again [my name]
A bit keen, really. Maybe too keen. Maybe just too French. I thought. I really wasn’t sure what I thought of his forwardness. I’m not big on sext messages. I wrote him back.
13:56 Sorry, been in meetings all morning and phone has been off. It was lovely to meet you as well. See you soon xx
He wrote back immediately.
13:57 Very much looking forward to seeing you [my name]
Was it absolutely necessary to keep inserting my name into his messages? Maybe it was a French thing. I didn’t respond. I turned to my computer and began going through emails and work stuff. My phone buzzed. ‘Ughh.’ I exhaled, expecting another message from Frenchie. It came up as [His name] Abacus – the other guy I had met the night before who had told me in the most blunt fashion possible that he was going to call me the next morning (he specified morning) and that we were going to go on a date. I was unimpressed with his commitment to time schedules.
14:02 I lied to you. I didn’t text you in the morning because now it’s midday. How’s things?
I put the phone down and did some work. As my blood sugar levels dropped I realised I hadn’t eaten all day. I grabbed my bag and sunnies. It was an overcast day, like most days in London, but bright enough to aggravate my hangover. I walked out of the building and past all the smokers, turning left towards my daily hideout. It was a small pub in the middle of a row of modern buildings. The pub had been there for well over one hundred years and had a cozy feel to it amongst the impersonality of its surroundings. I went inside and ordered my usual lunch of tomato and basil soup. Fridays were often liquid lunches for most of the people in my office, so as I looked at the draft selection I figured a bit of hair of the dog couldn’t hurt and ordered an Aspall. I pulled my phone out and texted the second one back. Since he had been put in my phone as [his name] Abacus, I’ll just call him Abacus.
14:28 Lying to me already? Not a great start Mr. [his name]. Been in a meeting all morning and just on a quick lunch break but I think I’m still drunk from last night. How are you?
I spent the rest of my lunch break going through Twitter and re-inebriating myself before heading back to be productive for what was left of the work week. As soon as I was finished I was out the door and on the phone to Kate.
‘I am aggressively hungover.’ She said.
I laughed. ‘Wasn’t feeling great either. And those two guys have been texting me.’
She laughed. ‘What are you doing tonight?’
‘I don’t know. Want to do dinner?’
‘Yeah, come over. I’ll cook.’
‘Yes you will, because we both know that I won’t.’
‘True story. Bring some champagne.’
‘I’ll probably bring cava.’
‘It really isn’t.’
‘I know.’ She said. ‘But I feel like we spent a lot of money last night.’
‘Certainly not on champagne – I can’t believe that guy bought you a bottle of Mumm!’
‘That was amazing. I should have just taken it home with me.’
‘Like a tramp?’ I laughed.
‘At least I’d be a classy tramp.’
‘That’s true.’ I looked up at the grey sky. ‘Right, it looks like it’s about to rain so I’m going to get on a bus and will be with you shortly.’
My phone had buzzed while I was talking to Kate. I went to my texts. It was Abacus.
I know it’s bad, I shouldn’t be lying so early. Wasn’t feeling too fresh this morning but just finished work so now heading to meet some friends. You got any plans?
I put my phone in my bag and waited for the bus. I could play the whole wait a couple hours to respond game, as that’s clearly what he was playing at. About thirty minutes later, with Waitrose’s finest cava in hand, I was standing in front of her door. She greeted me hello and as I walked into her flat I said, ‘Well, last night escalated quickly.’
‘Ugh. We have to stop escalating situations like that. This morning I felt like absolute death.’
‘I got four texts from that French guy saying that he really wanted to see me. I think we need to scale Thirsty Thursdays back.’
‘Or just move them to Fridays. Which guy was the French one? I feel like there were so many.’
I laughed. ‘We were definitely outnumbered. I think Rebecca Black could have been onto something with that “Friday” song.’ I contemplated. ‘So the French guy texted me four times in an hour, then around lunchtime the other guy texted me. I had completely forgotten about him until I got that text.’
‘I know. But all in all, a successful night. Except no Germans! We’ll have to fix this.’
‘Definitely. There were so many Danish guys there.’
‘It really isn’t close at all.’
I shrugged and walked towards her balcony, opening the door and stepping outside so that I could pop the cork into the adjacent park from her window. I lodged my thumb under the cork and as it flew off I said, ‘BOOM.’
Kate laughed. ‘I wish I enjoyed anything as much as you enjoy popping corks off of bottles of champagne.’
‘It’s really the small things in life.’ I said, pouring us two glasses. ‘So what happened with that tall guy?’
Kate raised her eyebrows as she sipped her drink to stop it from overflowing.
‘Sorry.’ I said as an aside. ‘I’m usually more coordinated with my pouring.’
‘It’s okay. So, he came back to mine and told me he loved me, then fell asleep.’
I laughed loudly. ‘That’s amazing … So nothing happened?’
‘No! It was weird.’
‘I bet this morning was weirder.’
She laughed. ‘Yeah, he just kind of said goodbye, kissed me, and left.’
‘Does he have your number?’
She shrugged as she drank. ‘Don’t think so.’
‘Ha, bye forever!’
‘Pretty much. I still can’t believe he said he loved me.’
‘Well, what’s not to love?’
‘Exactly. Well these two who have been texting me seem a bit strange. I don’t know if we should make a habit out of going to that place.’
‘Definitely not. You do not want to be a regular there.’
‘We should find five different places and just rotate which we go to.’
‘Amazing idea. And they should all be in different parts of London.’
‘There’s a really great place in Clapham called Inferno, we should go there next.’
‘Plan. Ooh, and the Roadhouse in Covent Garden.’
‘I’ve never been there.’
‘We have to go. It’s where I went that night with Lad Boy and Kash when Kash and I ended up going attempting to sleep together.’
I pulled out my phone and showed her the text marathon from the day. ‘I guess I should write this one back.’
I wasn’t feeling too fresh myself but managed to make it through a five hour meeting this morning without complaining about it. I do have plans tonight, yes. And for the next couple days. I’m very busy, you know. You have to book well in advance. Just realised that makes me sound like a prostitute. I’m not by the way x
I spoke aloud as I texted and Kate laughed. ‘I like that instead of deleting that and writing something else you just clarified for him.’
‘That’s how I roll.’
We had dinner and finished off the cava before Abacus wrote back.
Well, that’s even better because prostitutes are expensive in London ;P Well, I have a big presentation in London on Monday. If you’re around maybe we could do something after work?
‘I’ll respond to that later.’ I said after Kate and I had read the message.
I decided to call it an early night and bid Kate adieu. On the bus home I looked at Abacus’ message again. Big presentation in London. I began typing again.
Do you not live in London? I have to see what’s going on next week, but could potentially do Monday x
He wrote me back shortly after. Well I did, but moved out. The train is 30 minutes to Euston, so easy to get in. About to head out now. Have a good night.
The message didn’t warrant a response. I was relatively bored by both Frenchie and Abacus’ banter. Over the following week I had pretty uninspired text correspondence with both of them, resulting in two very different dates with each of them.
Those stories to follow soon.