I picked up my little red suitcase off the conveyor belt and sauntered towards the “nothing to declare” customs’ exit. A smile spread across my face. Awaiting me on the other side would be my driver, probably in a smart suit and certainly holding a crisp sign with my name on it. My smile widened at the thought of being chauffeured elegantly into Barcelona. The doors slid up. I spot my man, raising my arm in a small wave, which was intercepted by a hand grabbing it from behind…
“Tigresse! It’s me! I’ve come to pick you up and I see you, walking towards this other guy!” Oh mon dieu! It was the Catalan! What was he doing here! The shock of a lifetime or at least the biggest one I’d had in a long, long time. He was supposed to be in Northern France… and I was supposed to be taking a ride with my previously arranged driver. Still unable to get my head around what was happening, I abandoned the chauffeur to be whisked away by the Catalan.
Wow! What an unexpected start to my trip! Here I was, in utter awe, sitting next to the Catalan hearing about how his project had been canceled allowing him to be in Barcelona. Arriving into the city he continues to impress me by taking me for dinner a a trendy restaurant overlooking the twinkling city. At the end of our romantique and whimsical evening he gentlemanly escorted me to the friend’s apartment I was staying at and delicately kissed me goodnight. This was like a fairy tale… and it was just the beginning!
Originally the Catalan and I were scheduled to meet up at end of the following week, not at all this week so our plans were starting to change. Since his project was off and he had to pull something else together for the coming weeks, this thus potentially affected our little mini-break. Never mind, we could see each other over the course of the week and then see what would transpire.
He was free on the upcoming Saturday so we made a date for an afternoon at the beach. Seeing as he actually lived up the coast, he told be he would take me to one of the best beaches. Seeing as he would be near his place, I’d packed an overnight bag assuming that I would be staying over at his place… for the first time…
He did not disappoint on the first point. He went out of his way to take me to a small beach hidden away from the sun seeking Russian tourists. What a lovely relaxing afternoon, basking in the warm sun and in each other’s company. Time passed quickly and soon it was time to roll up our beach towels and head “home.” Admiring the setting sun descending behind the gentle foothills of Pyrénées, I couldn’t have been happier.
We seemed to be getting closer and closer to Barcelona. “I haven’t been home in virtually months, my place is a mess. I need time to get it organized for your longer stay next week.” eased the Catalan. “So I thought we could just stay at my parents’.”
His parents place?! But the Catalan was 45, why would he ever consider ‘staying at his parents’ place?! And even more importantly… were his parents going to… be there?!!
“Don’t worry, no one is home at the moment,” reassured the Catalan, probably observing my alarmed expression. Well, that was a minor relief, but still, I wasn’t terribly enthused at the idea.
“We can drop our things off and then go out for dinner, plus I’d really like to take a shower,” he added. Hmmm, things were getting more and more dubious.
“You can put your bag in my old room,” He gestured towards a door straight ahead. “Make yourself comfortable and I will be out after a quick shower.”
I shyly pushed open the door and fumbled around for the light. Here I was, in his childhood bedroom, with a single bed, some old photos on one wall and on the other shelves, some lined with books… and others lined with… Depends??
Oh my goodness, I peaked out to the balcony and spot something shiny. Was that a wheelchair?? I crept out into the hallway and peered into the opened doored master bedroom. Was that a hospital bed?? The romantic hallo that had been shining on our day was rapidly vanishing.
“You know, Tigresse, it’s getting kind of late… maybe we should just eat in?” He suggested towelling himself off.
“Sure, that’s fine,” I may have meekly replied. What was I supposed to say to that: No, I want to go out and never come back here?? So there were were, settled in at his parent’s stuffy geriatric apartment, as he rummaged through the fridge for something to prepare for dinner… thank god he open up a bottle of wine… which I was quickly downing, at least it was helping re-stoke the amorous vibes.
Were we really going to sleep in his childhood bed?? No… We weren’t going to… I was going to… alone! Because after there was a little action, the Catalan said he was going to sleep on the … sofa. Why? Was he seeking more space? Did he snore? Stuck in his old ways of sleeping alone?
What was happening to my Barcelona fairytale romance? Was it salvageable? Or was it … doomed?