Monday, November 30, 2009

The other Secret unveiled

A few years ago I went to a friend's 50th birthday party. I don't know her too well. We were more casual acquaintances than anything else I guess, although I like her a lot and have fun in her presence. Anyway, her partner Helen happens to be a woman I've known for many years, also as more of an acquaintance, because of the age gap between us. When I was at school, Helen was probably about 40. She went away one weekend and another mutual friend (Patty) organised a friend (Elize) to housesit. They had a dinner party one evening and I was invited.

Imagine the scene... still in school (probably just on 18) and invited to this very grown up and very lesbian evening. I was nearing the end of my school career and was planning on leaving my hometown to go off to university in a matter of months, and I was desperate to be with a woman.

I had told my mom I was staying the night at a friend's - and I got there on my scooter. I was very drawn to the house-sitter, Elize, who was a journalist with the most wonderfully delicate hands you have ever seen. She was about 4 or 5 years older than me, although when you're 18, that may as well be 10 or 15 years older! We got through rather a lot of red wine that night, as I recall, and the mutual friend, Patty, left quite soon after dinner. I remained. I can't recall what was said about why I was staying. Perhaps I was too drunk to drive anywhere!

Anyway, the delicious Elize was very kind and very sweet and before I knew it our conversation turned to things more Sapphic. To cut a long story short, we decided at that moment that it would be perfect to skinny dip. She slid into the pool first. I was but 18 and very shy, you understand. Under the cover of darkness I got into the pool too, and we shared out first, but by no means our last, kiss of the evening. Lord, this is sounding very cheesy! It really was a wonderful initiation, and from the swimming pool, we went to the bedroom. It was in reality Helen's bedroom, but remember that Elize was housesitting. I am very grateful for that night. Wow. For a first time, it was everything I had hoped for. And more. She was attentive and gentle and soft and taught me a lot. I am very grateful to Elize and for that wonderful and unexpected night together.

Anyway, the point is that at Helen's partner's 50th birthday not so long ago, we all had to reveal a secret. It was a spoof of The Secret you see - and the revelations that afternoon were hilarious and daring. Mine, to just the birthday girl and Helen, was what had happened in their home some 22 years prior. I told them about the housesitting and the wine and the pool and the education I received and they both threw back their heads and laughed and laughed, delighted to have been a part of my early education in some small, unfathomable way! I was glad to have shared that particular secret and I must admit to wondering where Elize was today and what her memory of that night had been.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Dear Author !
Bravo, what words..., a magnificent idea