Gawan and I have been staying in a grand, reconstructed medieval house in the Umbrian countryside for over a week but today was our last full day, alas. I’d happily stay here for ages. For one thing, the view is fantastic.
Still in Europe and having a blast. I’ve turned my computer on twice, just to write some quick notes about my adventures. I’ve had neither the time nor inclination to do anything more than that. There’s too much ambience and scenery (and wine) to soak up to spend much time staring at my laptop, focused on my thoughts and memories.
This photo is from my second flight, the one I had hoped (and failed) to sleep through.
On the fourth day, Gawan took me to the outlook he’d shown me the day before and went beyond for a proper hike, though there were paved paths and steps throughout.
He even brought a picnic: nice thick sandwiches and homemade pie for dessert, which we ate while looking out over a dizzying height. But we had mostly walked down to get to this particular height, and the return trip was up the equivalent of something like 40 flights of stairs. I would have eaten more pie if there had been any.
That evening, Gawan and his roommate’s boyfriend wrestled the soft office mattress upstairs and plonked it on top of the hard mattress in Gawan’s bedroom. It turned out to be just right: baby bear’s bed.
On the morning of the fifth day, we explored each other more, and this time it was not entirely vanilla. He visited the leather paddle upon me again (the first time for that had been at the hotel). We fucked again. He gave me oral, explored with his fingers, and wielded my trusty little vibe on me. Whenever I got close, he sweetly crooned “good girl” until I eventually came. He was unconditionally invested in my pleasure and happiness, and he swaddled me in a blanket of warmth and love.
In the afternoon, he drove me to a notable landmark, one of the sights you really should see if you’re in this part of the country, partly just to have a little outing and partly so I could say “Yes, I saw the famous sights”. I had travelled a long way to get here; if I didn’t see any sights, there would be some awkward questions when I got back home.
So by the fifth day we knew we had a bed that was comfortable enough for me and big enough for us both, but we slept on it only once more before leaving town for the first time, then a couple more days here and there. Otherwise, it was a parade of five different hotel beds over the next two weeks.
Throughout the trip, I continued to check in with myself, but less and less frequently as the guilt and anxiety failed to materialize. I did, however, experience some guilt for a while after I got home, in response to Wolf’s moods. He had been consistently supportive of me taking this trip and having fun but had nonetheless found it difficult with me away, and more difficult that I was with another man. This almost certainly hit him harder than it would have otherwise because of his depression and anxiety (which was finally diagnosed only a couple of weeks ago).
But he was still unhappy even after I returned. It pains me when he’s unhappy, so I have a tendency to take more responsibility for his mood than I should, but it seemed clear that the trip was the cause of his unhappiness. And this probably hit me harder than it would have otherwise because of my own depression.
Looking back, I suppose I was projecting my own fears: that non-monogamy would hurt him, and when I saw that he was hurting I unconsciously assumed that was the reason and duly felt guilty about it. While it was unresolved, I couldn’t face writing about this trip. We’ve talked about it many times since: he didn’t expect or want me to do anything differently than I had done, and I’ve let go of feeling like his pain was my fault. I think we’re in the clear now.
I’m always in good hands with Wolf.
I’m leaving on my trip in a few days, so Wolf’s excellent care is much on my mind. And I do feel tremendously well cared for: it’s clear that my happiness is his top priority. It’s his generosity and deep love for me that is behind him encouraging me to take this trip, wanting me to have a blast, driving me to the airport. All while he makes do without the one thing he wants most: me.
The fire had burnt itself out during the night. The velvet intimacy of darkness barely kept at bay with firelight had given way to the earnest flat grey light of mid-morning.
We abandoned our living room encampment, still smelling slightly of wood smoke, and returned to Gawan’s bedroom. Third day, third fuck. I hadn’t yet spent enough time with him to be fluent in his body language, but I suspected that to someone who knew him well, he’d appear more relaxed, cheerful, and perhaps satisfied than he had in a while.
One such someone turned up rather earlier than expected: his roommate pulled into the drive, already back from her boyfriend’s place where she’d spent the last few days. I was dressed by now but a still bit cold and had thrown on a bathrobe over my clothes, but I thought it impolitic to meet the woman of the house for the first time looking as though I’d just rolled out of bed — it would bring the unstated assumptions a little too close to the surface — so I ditched the bathrobe, put on a sweater, and went out to say hello.
It was a little awkward, though that wasn’t surprising. I’d been nervous about this meeting. She and Gawan are like family to each other, and I knew I was being assessed.
That first meeting didn’t last too long though. Concerned about the unhappy state of my back and neck, Gawan had made an appointment for me with a massage therapist, so that was the first order of business. Afterwards, we ran some errands, and then he showed me the commanding view from a nearby outlook.
By the time we got home, the roommate’s boyfriend had arrived for my welcome supper, and the four of us spent a convivial evening chatting while demolishing a roast duck.
We wound down and said our goodnights. Where to sleep this time? Not surprisingly, Gawan wanted to use one of the multiplicity of beds in the house instead of the couch (which was no longer private enough anyway), so we went downstairs and tried the mattress in his office. Third night, third bed. It the same size as the one in his room but less of the surface was available. It was also softer and it sloped down slightly on my side.
Since access to the office was from outdoors and the bathroom was a long, inconvenient way away, I took out my contact lenses in the office rather than doing so upstairs and then fumbling about blindly, past the pool, in the dark.
I slept poorly. I was cold and I got bumped once or twice. When I had to pee during the night, I got as far as the lawn and thought, fuck it, good enough. This was even more like camping than the air mattress by the fire in the living room. Not good.
Less than a week now until I set out on my next adventure via planes, trains and automobiles (in that order, even). I’m excited, a little nervous for at least three separate reasons (probably more), and a bit anxious about finishing my preparations although I’m actually feeling fairly well prepared.
This will be my last domestic Boobday, and if I remember to nip off to the loo with my phone en route, there should be some more mile high photos coming.
My energy levels have been low this week, which I attribute to the medication, but I think I might be acclimatizing to it finally. I certainly hope so. I’d like to feel alert more than just randomly.
I’ve had this crochet top for a long time and decided to use it for my photo this week. I had forgotten how hippy it looks, but when I noticed, I swapped out my dressy black leather belt for this worn brown belt to heighten the effect. (The belt may actually date to that era: it originally belonged to an ex’s grandfather.)
My trip to visit Gawan was a big game of musical beds. At the end of my first day of travel, I slept on my air mattress on Mr. PS’s floor. While those interminable airborne hours stretched out of shape, I slept in my seat, but unfortunately, despite being deluxe, it could in no way be mistaken for a bed. When I arrived, Gawan collected me at the airport, took me back to his hotel and (eventually) tucked me in for a nap.
When nighttime finally arrived in this time zone, I was reminded that my sleeping arrangements would be (as I had predicted) the subject of some debate. The hotel room had two beds — a double and a single — so there was plenty of space for both of us to stretch out. Except that Gawan didn’t want space. This was the first time in eight months that we were in the same room and he wanted to close the distance between us completely. Given the fact that I was still run down from travel, he was prepared to concede the point — tonight.
The next day was my first day at his house. We slept together for the first time that evening. It was a watershed, not just for our relationship but also for me personally: this was the first time I had embarked on a sexual relationship while having a good sense of who I am and a bit of a clue about what I want, as well as really understanding that it is always my choice whether to have sex or not.
It was also the first time I had been (ethically) non-monogamous. I’d given the issue a tremendous amount of thought. Intellectually, I was confident that I thoroughly considered all the angles and had come to a rational conclusion rather than conveniently justifying a hot but unwise choice. But it’s impossible to predict one’s emotional reactions with absolute certainty, especially when I was doing something that I’d always been told was wrong. Wolf’s attitude — he’s completely invested in my happiness and wants me to have fun, though he’s not exactly enthusiastic about this specific kind of fun — resulted in me feeling a bit more ambivalent than I would have otherwise.
When Gawan and I stood together on the threshold of that new shared experience, I checked in with myself and found… I felt good about it. I was going in with my eyes open and liking what I saw. Immediately afterwards I checked in again: I didn’t think guilt or anxiety was probable but it was certainly possible, and I needed to pay close attention to my feelings and respect what is, not what I thought ought to be. Fortunately I still seemed to be OK. In fact, I was happy, content, satisfied, and thus better than OK despite being in uncharted emotional territory. No second thoughts.
In addition to sleeping together, that night Gawan was adamant that we also actually, you know, sleep. Together. Aside from just enjoying it, he also sleeps better when he has someone to cuddle. And I can hardly fault the man for not being able to get enough of me.
I, on the other hand, have difficulty sleeping and manage best in my own bed. I had built up one hell of a sleep debt over the course of a few years of waking halfway through the night and not being able to do much more than doze in the hours that followed, a problem for which I’m now taking (mild) medication. If I wake up because I’ve been, say, bumped, I still may not fall asleep again for another hour or more and when morning arrives, I’ll likely be in a seriously foul temper. So, really, ensuring that I have a good sleep is actually a public service. That first night at his house I agreed to share his bed on condition that he keep to his side and let wake me up naturally.
Morning sun lit the room. I looked over and saw his broad back; I couldn’t tell whether he was awake, so I touched his shoulder gently and he immediately turned to me, a smile lighting his face. And we started the second day with our second warm, loving, vanilla fuck.
But alas, his bed was too hard and my back ached something fierce. It was fine for play but no good for rest and that evening I refused to sleep on it again.
No matter, I had my air mattress, and even if it wasn’t perfectly comfortable I could rely on it for a decent sleep. He, however, was feeling thwarted. At bedtime on that second day, was drained and cranky: I was still travel-weary and then I’d tired myself out taking a private dance lesson.
The bedroom was a bit too small so we set up in the living room, where he inflated the mattress for me and arranged it on the floor in front of the fireplace. He got as comfortable as he could on the couch, beyond arm’s reach. I had a lovely, refreshing sleep. Gawan, not so much.
Smooth. Taut. Toned. Strong.
The prompt this week is “minimalism“, which, as it turns out, is pretty much my style in a nutshell. So I took an image and made it even more minimal than usual.
I looked for quotes relating to hips and, other than the worn out “hips don’t lie”, I found nothing that was both pithy and positive. The catchiest sayings all expressed embarrassment and self-consciousness, as though the only purpose of hips is to collect fat, which is shameful obvs. As though by representing the widest circumference of most women’s bodies, hips are a sin against an incredibly limited and thus impoverished definition of beauty.
I don’t buy it. Hips are just curves, arcs. Some are curvier than others. No matter. Hips can be juicy and luscious. Ain’t nothing wrong with that.
The doctor has just increased the dose of my anti-depressant slightly. I’ve been feeling better but I still have days where getting anything done is a struggle. I’m optimistic that this dosage will bring me pretty close to functioning at 100%. Although I’ve learned not to plan too much because I can’t predict whether any given day is going be completely unproductive, I’ve also learned that it’s not an issue of laziness and it will pass eventually.
Less than two weeks until my Europe trip and I’m so excited! I’ve been anticipating this for months. Maybe that’s why it’s now starting to feel a bit bittersweet – I’ve been looking so far ahead for so long that my focus is still on the distance, which is now in the neighborhood of the end of my trip and coming home. Don’t worry, I’ll be in the moment when I’m there, but those intrusive thoughts that my time with Gawan is limited and passing will pop up unbidden from time to time. And I still have some prep to do, so that should keep me in the right place temporally.
We’ll have adventures. And we have plans – sexy plans for sexytimes.
Pink like a Pearl eraser.