On love & sex...

Friday, March 23, 2007

I've had two friends talk to me about their relationships with week.  Both are in committed long term relationships, one friend a man and the other a woman - both going through a bit of a rough patch with their partner - one more severe than the other.
Scenario number one (the male friend) - A couple that's been together over 5 years that started out together very young.  They are each other's first serious relationship. They're unmarried, but live together.  They're relationship has reached the point of being more like room-mates than anything else.  No sex to speak of, no real quality time with each other and they hardly ever kiss each other hello when they come home any more (they used to all the time).  He says he's in love with her and doesn't want to break up.  They've tried 'dating' each other again, but when he makes sexual advances - she says that's all he's interested in.  He says there's only so much rejection he can take before he stops bothering (this is just a brief summary, but only scratches the surface)...
Scenario number two (the female friend):  Married couple with a baby.  He works all the time.  She's home alone with the baby all day (and some nights as well), living in a new area with no social life.  He plays sports two nights a week and has no additional free time to spend with his family.  She feels alienated and gets no help around the house or with the baby.  He says he's tired and has no time to help.  They're arguing more often then they used to.  Sex is brief and not very often (the baby isn't in her own room yet because he doesn't have the time to help set-up the nursery).  Tensions are high...
These are both common scenarios.  When asked for advise, I gave my female friend the following suggestions (although I'm no relationship expert) - Stop thinking about what's coming between you - it only makes you more agitated every time you go over it.  Instead, buy something sexy that makes you feel pretty when you put it on (unlike the lingerie he's bought for her that only made her feel fat with baby weight).  I also provided the product info for an item to surprise him with in the bedroom that in my opinion, will do them both a world of good.  I told her to lay the items out for him to find when he gets home for work and let him know what he can expect when the baby gets her own room and to tell him she did it because she loves him and wants to get closer again.  Men feel more loved with sex.  If they know they're loved - they start showing more love.  It's an easy and quick fix for a couple with a good foundation...
My advise for my male friend - Although, I've made quite a few suggestions in the past that haven't worked, I honestly didn't know what to tell him.  Why is it I know more about how men think then women?  I can advise my girlfriends with advise on men all day long, but when I need to help a man with what to do when thier are having problems relating to love & sex - I don't have a clue.  I mean, I've told him before to send her flowers at work (woman love that sort of thing).  I told him to take her for a weekend away.  I told him all the obvious things, but how to seduce a woman  who feels all you want is sex??  Sorry, not my territory.  I've been that woman, but I was much younger and it was only when the relationship had run it's course and there was no saving it.  I didn't know how to tell him that. 
I guess I just find it odd that I had no advise to offer other than what I've offered in the past few months.  I feel really good that my friends feel any advise I have to offer is worth listening to and that they come to me when they need to talk, but I feel terrible when I don't have anything to offer.

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Come on Spring!

Thursday, March 22, 2007

It appears that winter has reared it's ugly head and kicked Spring's ass into submission.  It's been really cold this week and the wind chill is quite awful in this area.  Not two weeks ago, I was doing my workouts on the sea front and today, the bitterly cold wind was so bad it made my eyes tear walking to the gym (oh how I dream of driving again)! I know it was early for spring type weather, but I was really hoping it would stay. I guess I should be grateful the sun is out and I didn't have to contend with the sideways rain that seems to come hand in hand with winter in this country!  Still, I hope spring wins the fight soon!

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Ohhh, Now I get it!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

When I wrote the entry below, I didn't realize that the article I wrote about was actually written by a British expat living in NY (opposed to an American fluent in English).  The expat was making fun of fellow Brits - hence the subheading in big red letters...
When I read the article, I was quite busy with work, but it caught my attention so I quickly read it through.  So quickly that I missed the subheading which made it quite clear it was a British person that wrote it and I also didn't notice that there was a second page! This new realization (thanks to Jersey Girl) makes the article a lot more funny and much more appropriate.
That being said, I'm leaving the entry below because I still think it's relevant (albeit not to the article, but to how we look at other cultures living in our country).

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Can't we all just get along?

This article was sent to me by a fellow Jersey girl that reads my blog (thanks to her for sending it).  She sent it to give me a laugh.  I have to admit that I did laugh out loud (especially at the bit about asking a Brit what part of Australia they are from).  I really wanted to read the article and think - Finally, someone is picking on them for a change and part of me did, but I found myself thinking that although what the author describes is mainly true - does it make them any better than the British that have made me feel so unwelcome here? I mean can't we all just get along?  Why do we have to pass judgement and pick on each other for our cultural differences?  Why can't we accept that the British will never become 'warm' types of people and we'll always remain super friendly and slightly loud in comparison?  The British are reserved and appear to be snobby to us and we appear larger than life and obnoxious to them.  For the most part I don't believe either scenario is true, it's all just cultural differences.  I mean let's face it, there are going to be unlikable
people no matter where we go, but I really think it's unfair to judge a book by it's cultural cover.

People have met Wayne and thought he was aloof, but the truth is that he's shy and quite around people he doesn't know (especially when he feels everyone in the room is observing him as the Englishman that married the American).  Wayne is far from aloof.  He's an attentive and caring man who takes very good care of me, but outsiders have no way of knowing that any more than the people here know anything about me.
As Americans, are we any better than the British pick on us?  How many times have we heard someone say - 'If you can't speak the language, get out of the country.  If you're gonna live here, than speak English' or 'Damn foreigners, they're taking over'?  We all know someone that's guilty of this sort of behavior and it's sad that it's how the world works, but an outsider is always judged - no matter how good their intentions may be.

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Tuesday, March 20, 2007

I actually gasped when I saw this picture (Damn you, Heat magazine)! Say it isn't so! What's become of Mr Kilmer?? I just saw him in person not so long ago and I can say for sure - that belly wasn't there!  The shock - the horror!  I know with age we all lose our youthful figure, but my goodness, this is just giving up! 
Those who know me can only imagine my thoughts on this picture.  This has to rank up there with the day I came out of denial about George Michael being gay! :-) 

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Back we'll go - I think

Monday, March 19, 2007

Last night I listened to Wayne tell his mother about our plans to try to move back to the States (I don't think Mother's day was the best day to break the news, but men don't always consider such things).  He explained that it was his idea - that when we went back to visit for Christmas he saw how unhappy I am here because there, I was the woman he fell in love with.  He saw me joke around with friends & family and saw the sense of humor that comes out only with him these days (probably not as often has it should) and he saw me get fired up at the wheel and saw a side of me he probably long forgot.   He realized that this place has changed me and it's time to go back.  He says I lost my fire, but while we were there, I was myself again and I guess he'd take fiery any day over quiet and reserved.  People who know me probably can't imagine such a thing, but it's true and even though it's probably not the best idea financially to go back, it's probably the best thing we can do for not only me, but our relationship.  Until he said it last night, I didn't know how much I've changed being here, but hearing him say that I'm not the person he met and fell in love with any more, sounds quite dangerous to me.  Our relationship hasn't been affected thus far, but in time it can happen.  Anyway, I like the fiery me better as well.
I am a social creature.  I enjoy being around people who know and love me.  I love laughing and joking and visits to each other's houses.  Here, I don't have that and it changes a person when you lose so much.  I couldn't have imagined after nearly 3 years it wouldn't have happened here, but it hasn't and I can only guess it will effect me even more once Wayne and I start a family.
So, it's back to the US we'll go.  Risks are really scary.  We'll be risking it all with no guarantees when we get there, but I think it's the right decision.  Maybe if I keep saying it - I'll start believing it...

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Brighton Yesterday

Sunday, March 18, 2007

We went into Brighton yesterday.  Brighton is a trendy, artsey town that reminds me of England meets New York City and any up scale shore town in Jersey (it also happens to be the Gay capitol of England - not that there's anything wrong with that).
There are loads of shops, a shopping mall, a ton of restaurants, pubs
& clubs.  I love the mall because it reminds me of being back home and it feels familiar.  On a nice day, Brighton gets packed with people but it doesn't
bother me because for me it's really nice to be out among the living.
It's funny how I look froward to the weekends when I get to dress nicer
than my gym cloths and do my hair and make-up (not that I ever leave
the house without make-up).
It was cold in Brighton, but it was still really packed with people.  It's funny how when March hits and the first of the spring like days happens - some of the people here start dressing like it's summer - no matter what the temperature is.  Yesterday was pretty cold (around 55 degrees or so, but felt much colder in the wind) and there were people wearing shorts and flip-flops while others were wearing coats and scarves.  I really find it funny, but what's even stranger is that they all seem to be just as comfortable in their choice of clothing as the others - the people in shorts don't seem to be colder than anyone else.  Although, I was wearing a light jacket and in the wind, felt pretty damn cold.  I guess it really is a state of mind.
Brighton is a great place for people watching.  There is a huge mix of types of people there - anything from posh looking conservative types to the punk rocker types with bright colored spiked hair and piercings.  It's quite the site to see them all walking along the streets together seemingly unaffected by each other.
The strip along the seafront and Brighton pier is what makes Brighton stand out among the rest.  It's lined with Victorian buildings on one side and the beautiful pale green ocean on the other.  We have a prier and see front here, but Brighton just seems grand.  I guess that's why in the summer people from all over the country come for their summer holidays (which is kind of unfortunate because it gets really over crowded).  We're not much different I guess because as soon as the sun shows it's self - we're there in the crowd with the rest.
Spring should be here to stay soon and I'm looking really froward to
the mild weather, the warm evenings in the shore towns and the fields of flowers that come with English
spring and summers. It shouldn't be long now.

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One of those days

Thursday, March 15, 2007

It's been one of those days - One of those days that I'm feeling really alone here.  I had a really crap morning.  Nothing really terrible, but not a way to start the day.  My cat Alfie (my problem child) has been ripping his hair out and has a big bald spot on his tail.  It was unsettling to witness and we took him to the vet the other night.  The diagnosis - he's either having an allergic reaction to a flea bite (he's an indoor cat and has never had fleas) or he's a 'stressy cat' (leave it to me to have a stressy cat). She gave us some topical flea treatment to start off with and told us to let her know how it goes. 
I don't like using chemicals and was hesitant to put it on him because him and his brother are constantly grooming each other and I didn't want them to get sick.  Against my better judgement, I put it on both of my cats and within a half hour, Alfie was foaming at the mouth, drooling and throwing up.  I called the vet and they said it was normal if ingested, but not fatal.  I had to spend the next hour chasing the cat around trying to keep him from licking the stuff from the spot I was assured they couldn't reach.
Stressed out, I really wanted to call someone to just say 'You wouldn't believe the morning I'm having'  Not wanting to bother Wayne at work, I quickly realized that there was no-one to call.  Not one casual friend I can call just to talk.  It was 6AM back home and I had to wait an hour for it to be late enough to call one of my best friends in Memphis.  I woke him up and by that time was in tears feeling lonely and sorry for myself.  We talked until it was time for him to get up for work and I felt a little better, but I've been restless ever since.  It's a beautiful day and I wish there was someone I could call to invite over or meet for lunch, but there isn't and it's one of those days that it's just really hard to be here.
Wayne's been sick all week.  I think I'll go make him some home-made chicken soup and occupy some time...

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What I take personally

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Someone recently said that they wonder why it is I take it so personally every time someone here says anything negative about the US Government.  My answer to that is - I don't.  I agree whole heartedly with what most people say about the current administration.  Hell, I have a sign hanging on my refrigerator that reads 'Don't blame me, I voted for Kerry.'  What I take personally is when people assume because I'm American, I support the government, Bush or this war (the only thing I support in this war are the troops who are fighting it).  I take it very personally when in friendly conversation it's brought up and thrown in my face as if I am guilty of being one of the decision makers.  I have no more control over my government than they have here over theirs.  I don't see a reason to bring politics into friendly conversation nor do I think I should be looked upon in a negative light because of what nationality I am opposed to being judged for the person I am. 
I've lived here for nearly 3 years.  I haven't had one person offer a hand in friendship, but I have had more than one experience where people have treated me unkindly because I'm American without knowing a thing about me.  I've had to listen to the rhetoric and the anti American comments, I've had to walk out of a restaurant because the people behind me were purposely talking loud enough for me to hear about how stupid my accent makes me sound and how obnoxious Americans are.  I've had one person walk away from me in the middle of a conversation after realizing I was American and I had a mother scold her child behind me for mimicking my accent telling her 'Don't talk that way - it's rubbish! You are NOT American - you're English.  It's those things I take personally.  I can handle the politics just fine.

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What a difference the sun makes

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

I think spring has arrived.  The winters here seem to last 6 months and in that time it's more dark and grey than anything else.  Sunday, the sun came out strong and it's been nice ever since.  What a lift in spirits it's given me.
Sunday, we went for a walk along the seafront and over to the arcade where we won

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Saturday, March 10, 2007

I had an experience last night that I just can't get out of my head.  I wanted to let it go; I wanted to sweep it under the rug and not let it bother me, but it has and this is my forum for dealing with such things...
I took Wayne out to dinner last night (I like to do that from time to time.  It makes me feel valid).  We went to the Italian place here on the harbour.  It's good food and really reasonable, plus we can walk there and not have to pay for a taxi if we feel like drinking. 
The place is new and I think they're still trying to find their way with the business.  It's pretty chaotic with the service - 3 different people come up to take your order in the first 2 minutes before you've had a chance to look at the menu and then no-body comes back for 20 minutes.
The manager (maybe owner) is a young guy who seems to wear many hats.  He runs around like a crazy man while the others kind of wander around not doing much of anything. He ended up being our server.  He was sociable & quick witted and we joked & talked with him every time he came to the table.  He recommended dinners and drinks and always made sure he asked if we liked his choices.  When I didn't finish my meal, he seemed disappointed and when I told him I was on a diet and found it hard to finish a meal lately, he joked with me and said 'Why are you on a diet -  Because the magazines tell you you should be?  You don't need a diet'  This not only validated yesterday's entry, but it also inflated my ego and I instantly liked him. :-)
At one point during our banter, he responded to something I said with, 'Not in this country, Love'  I'm not sure of what he was responding to, but it was funny,  appropriate and I didn't take offence to it.  I said to Wayne that I wish it was always like that when the 'American' thing came up.  Wayne said that I'd soon get fed up with it if it happened every day like it does with Dan (Dan makes an American joke almost every time I see him and it really bothers me.  I've been here nearly three years - do we still have to poke fun?).
At the end of the meal, I waited for him to come over to say good-bye and handed the tip to him - not wanting of of the other staff to get it considering he did all the work.  I told him just that and he said my tip was too much and that he'd be right back with change.  When he came back, I jokingly said to him (in response to his earlier joke) that in my country we tip 20%.  He then said to me in his best Texan accent - 'In my country we go around bombing everyone else's... He said more, but in the shock of it, I honestly didn't hear much more.  It wasn't light hearted banter any more.  He meant it and he wasn't joking.  I took the money from him and he walked away.  Wayne asked what he said (it's a loud place) and when I told him, even he seemed surprised and said, 'like he should talk - we're not any better...' We soon left.  I asked Wayne, 'He didn't mean it as a joke did he?' Wayne agreed he probably didn't and if he did, it was crossing a line. 
The thing is, I was really enjoying the evening.  It felt social and fun and then he had to remind me that no matter how I try, I just don't fit in.  I'm always different and I fear I'm always going to be looked down on because I'm American. 
I wanted to let it go and pretend it didn't bother me.  last night, I swept it under the rug and we went to the pub without it coming up again, but all morning it's been bothering me. 
I keep telling myself that giving up everything we have and two thriving businesses to move back to the US is completely insane and horribly irresponsible of us.  We're doing well for ourselves here and we're giving it up to start from scratch again (all while considering starting a family in a few months time) - nuts right?  But what's the alternative?  Can I ever be happy here?  I don't think I can pretend that I don't need more. 
What happened last night sucked.  I feel deflated.  Once again, I feel rejected and most of all I feel fed up and defeated.  God, I feel like a whiner...

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It's crazy time again

Thursday, March 8, 2007

I just cried watching the TV show, Bones this morning.  This can only mean one thing - it's that time again.  That time of the month that I get emotional and girlie for no apparent reason.  That time I can't seem to control for the life of me.  That time that I even want to smack me!  I didn't always suffer from this absurd affliction.  It was something I prided myself on - No moods driven by hormones here (so I thought).  It just started in the last few years and I wish there was one rational explanation for it or at least a fucken pill I could take to make me rational at the very least!
Last month I cried uncontrollably to my husband about my weight.  A couple of years back, I was on some medication that made me gain some weight.  I've been trying desperately to get back to my normal weight for a couple of years now and last month in utter frustration and apparently crazy with a hormonal imbalance - I cried (okay, sobbed was more like it) for a half hour straight saying things like - What if I'm never pretty again??  and - I'm fat and horrible!  My dear husband hugged me and said, 'Your coming on aren't you?' I wanted to get offended and say - how can you be so insensitive??  But I thought about it for a second and thought 'Damn it, he's right!!'  It was temporary hormonal insanity.  The world wasn't going to end because I was over weight after all...  Like I said it's that time that even I wasn't to smack myself - God bless the men all over the world that have to deal with such ridicules behavior!

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Our weekend in London

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Our weekend in London was wonderful.  We had a really great time and I'm so glad we stayed over night.  We stayed in the Crown Plaza hotel and it was fabulous.  The room was small, but the whole place was beautiful and sparkling clean.  The service was excellent as well (if you don't count the maid who woke us up at 8:30 in the morning by walking into our room).
After we checked in, we had some time to kill before dinner, so we went for a walk around the city.  We were down the street from the palace so we started there, went through the park and around to parliament to get a look at Big Ben passing Westminster Abbey along the way.  It was a really nice way to start our evening.
We had early reservations at an Italian restaurant before the show.  Dinner was really good, but we didn't plan enough time before the theater and had to run without coffee or desert.  We had a bottle of wine with dinner so, I have to admit that I was a bit tipsy for a portion of the show.
We went to see 'Underneath The Lintel' which is a one man show starting Richard Schiff (Toby from the West Wing).  We had great seats (8th row center) and the show was outstanding.  The man stood there and acted his heart out all by himself for an hour and a half straight.  When it was over, I sat there saying to myself - Stand up people - just stand up.  Four London shows and not one standing ovation...
After the show, when leaving the theatre, we saw people gathered outside the stage door for autographs.  I said to Wayne, 'I bet he'll sign it for me (unlike another actor I saw on the west end not so long ago...click here to read about that experience )'  Wayne agreed, so we waited for him to come out.  I was the third person he walked up to.  I handed him my program and said 'You deserved a standing ovation  he seemed surprised by both my accent and my comment and paused before replying with, 'They don't do that in England.'  I told him I knew that, but I was willing it for him anyway - hoping they'd stand for him.  He smiled and said,  'I've had one standing ovation since the show opened and I think it was a thrertre full of Americans.'  I laughed and agreed it was probably the case, told him his performance was wonderful and walked happily on my way with his autograph in hand (I felt a great sense of redemption after finally getting an autograph on the West End).
We got a taxi back to the hotel after deciding we'd finish our evening at the hotel's cocktail bar.  The ride back to the hotel was grand.  London is beautiful at night, and for a moment it seemed surreal.
The cocktail bar was really nice (a far cry from he pubs here in town).  We sat at the bar and spent a good deal of our evening joking around with the bartender - a 21 year old Frenchman who was absolutely charming and adorable.  He made us a variety of drinks for us to try and we enjoyed every one of them. 
I have to confess - I smoked that night.  For the first time in over two years I smoked.  I'd like to say I hated it, but I didn't.  I enjoyed it and have been dying for a cigarette every time I have a drink.  Wayne and I discussed it and he begrudgingly let me try it to see if it could be something I enjoy occasionally when we go out for a drink.  I smoked 4 cigaretts and at the end of the night, gave the rest of the pack to the bartendier to throw away for me.  He looked at me suprised and I told him I quit two years ago.  To which he replyed 'That is very very very bad and if i knew I wouldn't have let you (in his thick french accent).  The good news is, I haven't wanted one since and if anything when I smell smoke, I no longer feel the craving to have one.  Maybe it was something I needed to get about of my system.
Before leaving the bar, Wayne told me to ask the bartender his name so I could give him an honourable mention when I blog about our weekend.  I did ask and his name was Morgan.  Wayne and I looked at each other laughed and I responded by saying 'Of course that's your name'.  Those who know me well, know that this was not the first adorable, charming, 21 year old Morgan I have met in my lifetime, but he was the first who was French.
More tomorrow...

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My 2nd favorite Canadian cont.

Last week, I wrote about my favorite Canadians and how they remind me of random musicians.  They have both given photos so I can see how reliable my memory is (it's been years since I've seen either of them).  Here is a comparison of Gary and the lead singer of Five for Fighting for anyone who wants to give some input...

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London Bound...

Friday, March 2, 2007

We're going to London tomorrow to celebrate our anniversary.  I'm really looking froward to it.  I've had an on going love affair with London since moving here.  I find it to be a magical place and wish we could live there.  I have often said that I wish I could take the beauty and charm of England and put it into America, that way I could have the best of both worlds. 
We're going to dinner and a play and staying over night in a really nice hotel.  I've been debating with myself on whether or not to spend the money on a hotel or not, but I'm so glad I booked it.  I booked through priceline.com and saved about $110 and we'll be staying in a 4 star hotel right near the palace.  I'm like a little kid in London and get really excited about the tourist type places.  Every time I see Big Ben, I get childlike and say things like 'look babe, it's Big Ben!' as if I'm seeing it for the very first time.  I haven't seen it in a while so I'm hoping we're not far from it.  We'll have to go back when the weather is warmer so I can enjoy the sites and take loads of pictures.  I will miss London when we leave, but will have a new appreciation for NYC and all of it's glory. 

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Tornadoes In 3 States

There's someone I care for that lives in a state in 'tornado alley'.  Since moving here, when ever there's a tornado that hits, they only announce that the US was hit.  Today, they said 3 states in America were hit by deadly tornadoes and 11 were killed.  My breath always catches in my throat as I wait for them to say which state - they never do and I'm forced to go to my computer to look it up. 

Their state wasn't hit, but I really wish they'd get out of that God Forsaken place!  I don't understand why people would stay in a place like that.  I mean I know anything can happen to any of us at any time, but why would you want to put yourself in harms way like that and increase your chances of something devastating to you?  I guess it's just the frustration of this morning's worrying events that's talking.  To each thier own.  It's not for me to understand - God, knows I never will.

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My second favorite Canadian

Thursday, March 1, 2007

To not leave anyone out - my 2nd favorite Canadian also reminds me of the lead singer of a band - he reminds me of the lead singer from Five for fighting and if he sends a picture too, we'll take a poll on that as well!

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