My sister Suman, the teacher, has just moved into a new apartment in Derby in the East Midlands, and this weekend – being from the West myself – I put aside any rivalry of the 2 Pac/Biggie sort to help with the move. Once we’d pivoted the sofa up the stairs, walked the refrigerator into place and pulled our muscles out, we sat down on our work and enjoyed a few drinks with a few friends.

My wingwoman Beth, currently in California, had earlier provided remote encouragement with the suggestion that I might realise the teacher/student fantasy I’ve had since high school with one of Suman’s colleagues in Derby. So naturally I was somewhat disappointed that the party consisted of my sister and her friends Gareth, James, every bit the I.T. teacher – comic book t-shirt an’ all – and his girlfriend of two months Danielle, still in that horny as hell honeymoon period.

To be fair, even if the faculty member of my dreams was in attendance I’d only score poor marks. After the strenuous move I was emitting a smell not unlike onions and since the apartment was without hot water I was without shower; the mouth sores that seem to precede even the slightest chance of sex were back and the medication I was using, might taste like liquorice on application, but reeks of fish when dry.

Although I somewhat regret being so presumptuous to pack condoms I had a good weekend all the same. I was completely impressed with my sister’s new place and my own skills at drunken charades; I quite liked James and Danielle but seeing them together, although a little gross, made me realise just how much I miss being in a relationship. As much as I do, I’m taking the recurring mouth sores as a sign that I’m not ready for such – I’m so not over my last relationship – and I should probably sort out my own problems before I pass them on to others. That, and I might want to see a doctor. My mouth really hurts.

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