What's new with Janey
20 September 2006

Old people who kiss in the street…

Husband and daughter Ashley came to meet me today after a meeting.
As they both entered the bar, they passed in the entrance an elderly couple (mid to late 60’s probably) who were locked in a passionate kiss….seriously into a massive big clinch and my daughter was horrified “Arrrggghhh pensioner porn” she screeched as she threw herself into the seat opposite me!

I saw the couple at the door and thought it was not nasty but very nice in a lovely way.

I mean , if they were a couple of scary old drunks mauling each other, I would be worried it was going to end badly, either in violence (Glasgow drunks veer from affection to hostage situation very quickly ) or worse -full on open air sex! (Yuk).

This was a very well-dressed middle- classed –looking couple and they really were wrapped around each other, completely oblivious to the school kids and human traffic that occupied the busy West End street.

I imagined that they were an elderly couple who once fell in love in the 1950’s but were somehow tragically torn apart and finally 50 years later meet up and declare their undying love for each other!
Or maybe it was just a happy couple celebrating their wedding anniversary in public….why did that seem so alien to me?
Why could I not consider that two people would still want to kiss in public after being together for 50 years?

I can’t imagine being with someone that long EVER….yet I am married 26 years next week….I still think we are dating and I am not too sure about him yet, I haven’t decided if he is the ONE.

When husband came to Edinburgh during the Fringe he drove me mental. I recall going up to a bar to meet Ashley after one of his particularly bad Aspergers syndrome episodes (my husband has mild Aspergers).
Here is a typical conversation my daughter and I had, it really does sound like a scene from some cheesy sitcom.

Ashley- “Where is dad?”

Me- “Dad?….oh sorry he died in a horrible fireball accident”

Ashley- “Are you trying to plot his death again?”

Me- “Yes, its true I am, he sat tonight after I did three shows, one radio show and one interview and decided to teach me binary numbers and explain why logarithms are important in society, and I never really got into it but I did realise that you should never marry the first man you have sex with, so I did learn something”

Ashley- “Mum tell him to go home please”

Me- “I did, apparently he lives with us, how did that happen?”

Ashley- “I mean back to Glasgow, leave him alone”

Hopefully Ashley will never marry young, never believe that marrying any man will get her away from the hopelessness of her family, because that’s why her dad and I got married. I am not being horrid, that’s the truth, we were only teenagers.
His family were a male dominated gangster type Glasgow crime clan and mine were dirt poor and broken emotionally.
I just wanted to find a boy and make a lovely wee family unit, a wee house and lots of love, just create what I didn’t actually have.
We were a couple of train wrecks waiting to crash into each other and WE DID!

Thank goodness the one important amazing thing that came from both of us un-educated, emotionally trashed, sexually abused and mentally crippled kids was that beautiful daughter.

Yet we are still together….still looking at each other like strangers in the dark, still scared the other will leave, still holding onto each other like a broken boat in a swollen river, still spitting and hating, loving and crying, kissing and biting, shaming and smiling, still waiting….yet still hoping they will kiss in the street when they are pensioners?

Maybe we will or maybe we won’t. I really don’t know._

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