November 4th, 1989

November 4th, 1989

At home

I must absolutely, positively stop eating! I finally got up the courage to step on the scale this morning and I weigh four ounces less than nine stone (125lb’s, ugh!) I think if I could stop feeling so sad about everything, I’d eat less but when will that happen?

Mum surfaced this afternoon and of course the second I saw her coming down the stairs, I envisioned a lovely, long walk with her and lots of chat along the way. I sat at the kitchen table pretending to write, but I was more focused on watching mum. She moved slowly around the kitchen as though it was her first time there. We exchanged a few words but she seemed really out of it and within ten minutes she was back in bed.

Dad came home from grocery shopping, laden with all sorts of goodies that I will miss eating! He asked if I had any plans for tonight and I didn’t, until Sebastian rang and asked if I fancied going to a Guy Fawkes party with him.

Last time I saw Stephen, I asked if he minded me keeping in touch with his ex. He pretended to be outraged but I know he was joking, so, with that in mind, I agreed to go. Plus, I couldn’t bear the thought of another miserable Saturday night, stuck at home.

It took forty minutes to drive to Sebastian’s but only because I got a bit lost. It was lovely to see him again and we immediately started talking ten to the dozen, in between which we cracked up laughing over how much there was to catch up on.

Sebastian said the party was at his friend Tracy’s house, which was only a ten-minute walk, lucky for us because there was absolutely nowhere to park. I thought we were going to a small gathering in somebody’s living room but the party was outside, complete with a raging bonfire.

I was surprised to find out Tracy is, in fact, not a girl, but a gorgeous guy, with an even better looking boyfriend, called Mason. They were both absolutely lovely and made me feel really welcome. Mason is cabin crew for Monarch but really wants to join British Airways, so we had much to talk about while we stood by the bonfire.

Right before midnight, another gorgeous creature passed around baked potatoes slathered in beans and coleslaw (my last meal, sob sob) and a few of the other party guests set off fireworks. Sebastian joked that it was all very romantic, which it really was.

“Moments like this make me miss Stephen,” he sighed.

“Aw, sorry you’re feeling like that.”

“Don’t worry,” he joked, “The feeling will soon pass.”

I laughed. “He’s a handful, that’s for sure.”

“Such a great guy though.”
“He really is. This is all right up his alley, don’t you think?” I asked, looking around at the throng of people around us, some of whom were dancing.

Sebastian nodded yes and gave me a questioning look. “So?”
“So what?” I asked.

“Who do you miss in moments like this?”

“No-one,” I lied.

November 3rd, 1989

November 3rd, 1989

At home

It was nice to get out tonight and I’m glad I didn’t drive, otherwise my car would still be in Stony Stratford, but, as usual, I’m getting ahead of myself.

Lovely surprise this morning when Laney rang.

“Where the hell have you been hiding?” she boomed.


“I’ve been ringing you for days. And why don’t you have an answering machine?”

“My mum and dad refuse to get one.”

“That’s mental but your mum usually answers then we have a natter for at least half an hour before she says, ‘Och, lane eh, Karen’s no here, she’s away on a trip.’”

I laughed. “You sounded just like her, there.” As soon as I said it, I felt a wave of sadness come over me. “I’m afraid my mum isn’t up for much at the moment.”

“Sorry to hear that. Is she feeling poorly?”

“Hmmm,” I uttered, not wishing to get into anything more.

“Tell her I send my love and wish her a speedy recovery.”

“I will, thanks. So,” I said, anxious to change the subject. “How’s your weekend looking?”

“I imagine you’ll probably wish it was yours instead of mine.”

“Sorry, you lost me there,” I said. “What do you mean?”

“I just got called out for a trip, tomorrow.”

“Where to?”


Shortly after that, Sarah rang and invited me out with not only her and Simon but also “a few of Simon’s mates.” Whenever Sarah uses that expression, it roughly translates to; “You’re a sad and lonely girl about to spend Friday night alone. You don’t have a boyfriend, which, in the eyes of a friend in a committed relationship makes you look like a waste of space. So, with that in mind, come and meet some naff blokes, one of whom you might take a shine to or at least have a laugh with. Or, you could choose to continue being a sad excuse for a young, single girl and spend the night at home, either washing your hair or worse still, watching crap on the telly.”

The blokes were not naff. They all appeared to be decent guys, out to enjoy a few drinks on a Friday night after a hard week at work. One guy in particular, Josh, was very sweet and we spent most of the night deep in conversation about all sorts but particularly our common interest in travel. “You have a bit of an unfair advantage over the rest of us,” he said, which made me laugh.

However, my favourite part of the night was when Sarah sidled up to us.
“You two make a nice couple,” she slurred.

If I had a pound for every time Sarah said that I’d…well, you know the rest.

“But that’s not what I came to say,” she continued.

Josh winked at me. “What did you want to say, Sarah?”

Sarah held up her glass. “Good riddance,” she said, clinking her glass to mine.

“To what?” I asked.

She giggled. “To that pathetic little wanker called Ben.”


September 28th, 1989

September 28th, 1989

Hyatt Hotel, Delhi, India

Call time is three hours from now but I don’t think sleep is on the agenda. I’m finding it difficult to keep up with the time changes on this trip, plus yesterday’s excursion to the Taj Mahal was exhausting, albeit absolutely worth it.

After a relaxing morning lounging in my room, Laney and I met and caught a tuk-tuk to the market where David and I had our chance meeting.

“How does it feel being here again?” Laney asked as we weaved our way through the crowded market.

“I like this market but nothing will ever top that day with David. What do you think of this?” I asked, picking up a white, cotton shirt.

“That thing is filthy,” she said, squirming.

“I don’t care,” I stated. “I love it enough to buy it.”

“It’ll make everything in your suitcase smell awful.”

“I’ll chuck it in a plastic bag and wash it when I get home.”

“I hope the shirt David bought you wasn’t that grubby.”

“For your information,” I said, “It was clean as a whistle. So there.” Then without meaning to, I added, “I can’t wait to go to London with him again.”


“Uh,” I stuttered, “I think I’m just a bit nervous about seeing him again.”

“When are you seeing him?”

“Late next week of course.”

“He’s coming back to London already?” she asked.

“No, my next trip is a four day LA,” I said matter-of-factly.

She stared at me. “You just said something about London.”

I laughed. “I know.”

“But you’re going to Los Angeles?”


“You never told me that.”

“I thought I did.”

“You did not.”

“Sorry, I thought I’d mentioned it.”

“No, you never mentioned it.” Her tone was more than accusing.

“Ok, ok,” I said, throwing my hands in the air. “Sorry,” I said, unsure why I was apologizing.

We didn’t speak for a while, which felt very awkward but I was determined not to be the one to break the silence. I was racking my brain trying to figure out why Laney had reacted the way she had, when suddenly, she said, “Let’s go for a champi.”

“A what?” I asked.

“Champi,” she smiled. “A head massage.”


“Just ok?” she asked, with a scowl.

Perhaps in another climate my reaction would’ve been different, but in today’s heat, with sweat trickling down my back, I glared at her. “How would you like me to respond, Laney?”

“I was just kidding.”

I was surprised but mostly relieved when, a few minutes later, she linked her arm through mine. “You’re going to think you’ve died and gone to heaven when you experience champi for the first time.”

No, I thought, I’m going to think I’ve died and gone to heaven next week in Los Angeles, when I “go to London,” again, with David.