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Tuesday, August 03, 2004

And one year ago *today*...

...was one of the hottest days of the year down South, as far as I remember (and for this story, I remember very well, thank you very much!).

Still pondering on seeing H again at the previous night's barbecue, I drove over to Petersfield where I was meeting my brother for *another* barbecue at his friend's house. Having a lunchtime barbecue on a day where the heat is already oppressive (by British standards, of course...), with hindsight, was clearly a crazy idea, but we soldiered on. My little nephew and his cousin were lucky enough to have a paddling pool in which to cool off - us adults had no such luxury, but soon retired to the front room for some shade...

Whilst I was there, I received a text message from J, asking if I wanted to meet he and H in the pub to watch the Grand Prix. Curious as to what the text message was about, my sister-in-law began probing me. Not literally, of course - that would be both revolting and futile - much easier to simply ask... I told her that I'd met this H character and we'd got on well. She began to froth at the mouth with excitement, as she thought the invitation had been prompted by H. In fact, it hadn't, but I later found out that there *may* have been some orchestration on the part of J...

Anyway, I declined their invitation, since I was busy in Petersfield but did wonder if (and probably hope that) there was something afoot.

After falling asleep on the sofa (this is one of my specialities), I awoke and realised that I had to be back in Southampton for 6pm as my friend S (out of S and S from the previous night) had invited me round for dinner and a movie with S (out of S and S) and J (out of J). I remembered the emails which had gone around relating to this event, where J had said he would attend after seeing H off back to London. In the back of my mind, I was hoping that, in fact, H would decide to postpone his journey back to London and come along too...

... and sure enough, I arrived at S's to find J, S, S and H assembled. I later discovered that this *had* been partly orchestrated by J and S - and there was more to come, I would find out...

We enjoyed a pleasant evening of pasta, chat, French films. H announced that he would book a taxi to the station for the 21:45 to Waterloo. I stepped in and offered him a lift. Offering lifts is another Witho speciality and S knows this. I later found out that she had deliberately had a couple of glasses of wine so that I would be the only sober person available, just in case there was any chance of me not offering him a lift. Now, that's a girly plot, right there!

So I gave him a lift to the station and we were both quiet in the car. I felt like a teenager, all fluttery and nervous. I wanted to do something, to give him a sign, but wasn't sure what to do. When I stopped the car at the station, I hoped that he would just snog me, and then I wouldn't have to do anything more, but he didn't. We said goodbye and as he grabbed his Man U bag from the back seat, I saw it - a wink. I smiled and drove off, my head full of the kind of feelings I hadn't felt for a long long time...

When I got back to S's, I had an eager welcoming committee: "So? Did he snog you?". "No, but put it this way - if he had, I wouldn't have stopped him..."


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