Last year, someone stole all my underwear. Every single piece that I possessed. Except, obviously, the items I was wearing. I was devastated. I am not the most girly of girls, leaning steeply to the tomboy side of the spectrum. I love my skinny jeans, wear my Docs with dresses, and would happily sleep in my leather jacket, given the option. But I have a HUGE weakness for undies. Not for me the wearing of mismatched bra and pants, or the Bridget Jones big knickers. As for greying and baggy? Never!! You won’t catch me dead in them!
Which is where it all stems from, I suspect. My fragrant mother impressed upon me at a very early age the necessity of never leaving the house without matching smalls, in case I should be mown down by a rogue vehicle, and find myself being stripped in a hospital. She could conceive of no greater shame than having to attend the deathbed of a child whose knickers didn’t match her bra! (As I grew older, she also insisted that I carried with me a spare pair of knickers and a toothbrush, in case of unexpected encounters. I jest not!! She would check my bag before I left the house!) I became an underwear snob, flinching at the sight of VPL, or unsupported breasts. No matter how dire my financial circumstances were, I would treat myself to one new piece each month.
By the time I crossed paths with the Knicker Nicker, I had a whole chest of drawers (heheh!!) purely for my collection. In the event of my washing machine breaking down, I could have survived quite happily for many months. And then I foolishly decided to dip my toe, gingerly, into the murky waters of the sugar daddy.
It seemed, on the face of it, to be an ideal situation. He had money, I did not. He wanted to spend that money on me. He wined and dined me, sent me flowers, bought me presents. Heck, he even did some work on my flat! Which, as it transpired, was how he obtained a copy of my key. He didn’t live in the same country as me, so I only saw him briefly, every couple of months. But I began to feel uncomfortable very quickly. I didn’t like the feeling of being beholden to someone, was extremely wary of any element of control. So when he announced that he had booked a holiday to the Maldives, I really wasn’t sure.
Friends laughed at my doubts. Threw every cliché possible at me. Life is too short being the most uttered. I sought the advice of my bestest male friend. He suggested that if I really felt so uncomfortable with the amount of money being spent on me, then I should compile a price list of favours provided, and invoice him at the end of the holiday!! Perhaps not the best advice, but we giggled for ages!!
In the end, the lure of the Maldives was too much to ignore. It has always been my vision of paradise, and I knew I would probably never have this chance again. So I went. And it was awful.
Not the Maldives. They are truly stunning. I was entranced. The people are the most charming, funny, and beautiful people I have encountered. I swam, I dived with sharks, and turtles, and Manta rays, and the most delicious rainbow of fish. The sand was pure white, the sea a deep azure, and I was completely delighted.
Except by my companion. Taking a long haul flight, and then spending a week on an island in the Indian Ocean, with a man you have nothing in common with, and realise you don’t actually like, is not an edifying experience. He took full advantage of the free drink available both on the flight and on the island, and so spent his week in a drunken haze. When he wasn’t writing lists. Our days were planned with military precision, most of it revolving around bars. He even chose to pencil in the moments he expected me to sleep with him. (I discovered that if I rubbed this out, he didn’t even notice.) He didn’t like diving, couldn’t understand why I would want to read a book, and despite the vast choice of food on offer, sulked because there was no mashed potato, and described red peppers as exotic fruit! He was rude to the staff, and wore shirts that made me want to cry with embarrassment.
I couldn’t wait to leave. I told him that I saw no point in continuing our acquaintance. He couldn’t, wouldn’t accept this. I stood my ground. He then began to email me with increasing frequency, listing all the purchases he had made. I eventually had to block him. So he broke into my house, and stole my underwear.
So I did what I should have done in the first place. I took my friend’s advice. I sent him a price list. And an invoice. I haven’t seen or heard from him since. Nor, sadly, from my underwear!!