Love Story Part 3

This story ended up being way longer than I would have thought. Therefore, I will be bringing to to you in 3 parts.

I opened my inner tent and went to collapse onto the bed. Then stopped. And stared. Then cried even harder than before. My bed was covered in about 10 packets of crisps in all shapes and sizes. Remember the hangover crisps? Marc must have put them there when he came to collect his jumper. Sure, crisps aren't the most romantic of gifts generally, but this showed me that he remebered the little details of the time we had spent together - it must have at least meant something to him as well. Which, of course, just made things worse. Oh, cruel world ;o) The story was over, as I said, before it had even really begun. Or at least, so I thought...

Marc had left on a Saturday, which was a good thing in a way, because arrivals and departures were always at the weekends, and although it wasn't high season yet, I had plenty to do what with seeing people off, cleaning accomodation and welcoming the new guests. So I kept myself busy, but I still couldn't stop thinking about him. (God, this really is starting to sound like a Mills and Boon) Then, on Monday, I was sitting at my reception (where else? ;o) when my work mobile (this was 2000 people, I didn't posess my own mobile at that point, although that was to change shortly after this) beeped - I had a text message. I got them all the time from the company headquarters, so I didn't think anything of it. Until I saw that it was from a german number. At which point I freaked. I opened it straight away and read "Hi! Have you eaten all the crisps yet? ;o) Hope you were surprised and that you are ok, cheers, Marc". I read it about 40 times. This was the last thing I had expected! I was even kind of angry with him, because I had spent the whole weekend persuading myself that I would never hear from him again, and that that was actually a good thing because it was such an impossible situation... and then he gets in touch! What was I supposed to make of that?

I of course spent about half an hour composing a witty light hearted reply which ended up saying something like "Thanks for the crisps. Of course I haven't eaten them all yet, they'll last me forever! I'm fine, hope you got home ok, cheers, Kathie". As I said, witty, and bound to make him fall madly in love with my charm and interesting conversational skills. Hmm... Still, it clearly didn't put him off totally, because he replied and we had a bit of a text conversation.

That night, I decided to write him a snail mail letter. Just letting him know what was going on, you know, hey, let's be penpals type stuff. And I might also have written something like "I suppose you realised I fell for you in a big way whilst you were here? If not, you know now..." and then gone on to talk about a sign I translated for the swimming pool. Embarrassing stuff, but I bunged it in an envelope and sent it before I could change my mind.

The next day, he texted me again. And the day after that. On my day off, I decided to cycle into Rimini (about 45 min ride) to go to an internet cafe and e-mail him. He e-mailed back. He told me about his girlfriend, who was pushing him to let her move into his flat, and he really didn't think it was a good idea. I told him about my boyfriend, who was coming to visit at the end of July, which I really wasn't looking forward to, and generally about how odd it was that a few weeks ago I had been totally sure that I loved Chad, and now, I was realising that I wasn't missing him at all. Generally, we could chat as if we had known each other forever. The only thing we didn't talk about was us. We never mentioned what had happened, we never allowed ourselves to analyse why we might be feeling unhappy in our relationships all of a sudden (although I remain convinced that the relationships were going nowhere anyway - meeting each other just made us realise it). Without ever having discussed it, we knew that that topic was just going to get us into trouble, and make things very complicated, and so we avoided it.

As time went on, I was cycling to the internet cafe more and more regularly - my afternoons on the beach in between reception opening hours were replaced by long bike rides followed by an hour in a dark cellar typing away. One after noon I was sitting there, typing away as usual, when my phone went off. I opened the text, already grinning away, and read: "I collected the photos today, and your letter came, and I love you". I nearly collapsed. I was actually physically shaking. I stopped typing in the middle of the sentence, added "just got your text, love kathie" to the bottom of the mail and cycled back to the campsite. On the one hand, I was ecstatically happy. On the other, I knew that things would have to change, and that it wouldn't be easy. But mainly, I was overjoyed ;o)

That evening, we spoke on the phone for the first time since he left. He said he'd had photos of me in one hand and a rambling letter full of crap in the other hand and he had been overcome with emotion and had to tell me how he felt. I told him that that was quite alright and that I loved him too (and anyway, what do you mean by a letter full of crap? that was a brilliantly composed piece ;o). So of course the discussion had to move on to where we were going from there? The first thing to be done, obviously, was to break up with our respective partners.

I rang Chad to tell him that I didn't want to be with him any more the next evening. It was horrible. I felt really bad about doing it on the phone, but I had no choice. I decided not to tell him that I was with Marc now - I just told him the truth - I didn't miss him and the time apart had made me realise that my feelings towards him weren't the way they should have been. He was very quiet, and only said that he would still come and visit me if that was alright, since he had booked his flights. What else could I say but yes? I had to share a house with him and 3 other people the following uni year, and of course hoped we could remain friends, or at least get on for our housemates sakes.

Marc split up with Josie on the Monday (we had spoken on the Saturday and he wasn't going to see her till work on Monday). I think that was a bit easier though, because although I may be biased, I get the impression she was the psycho bitch from hell ;o) Apparently as soon as she saw him, she went off on one about how she wanted him to let her move in or else they might as well split up (they had only been together for 8 months) - so he said "O.K, well I guess we'll have to split up then" and that was pretty much that. So on that day, 10th July 2000, Marc and I were officially a couple.

Except, yeah, right, it's fair enough being a couple on paper, but there was still the small matter of us living in two completely different countries and having totally different lives. We decided the first thing to do was to spend some time really getting to know each other - I mean, we felt as if we had known each other forever, but still, we had never really spent any time together. Marc decided to take the rest of his year's holiday from work and come and visit me for 3 weeks in August after Chad had left.

The less said about Chad's visit the better. Suffice to say he arrived with the idea that I was dellusioned about our relationship being over and that I would see him and realise what a terrible mistake I had made. Unfortunately, it didn't turn out like that, obviously. Instead, he noticed pretty quickly that I was getting a fair number of texts that made me grin, and asked me on the first day whether I was seeing somebody else. I wasn't going to lie to him, and so I said yes. That was it. He didn't speak to me for the rest of the week. Heck, I don't think he spoke to me for about 6 months. For the first 3 months we were in the house, he left the room whenever I came in. Of course I felt bad, but what was I supposed to do? It wasn't Chad at all - I had met the love of my life, and Chad's a really nice guy, but he couldn't compete.

So then Chad was finally gone, and Marc arrived. I was a complete wreck the day he was arriving - I have rarely been so nervous in my life! And then he was there. I was waiting for him at my reception, which was a small wooden cabin thing, with a covered terrace in front of it. The main campsite reception was opposite, and of course all my frineds from the site knew Marc was coming, so they were all watching. We decided to go into the reception, so we could say hello without an audience. I went in first. O.K, so there was a large wooden table on the right as you came in, where I did all my paperwork. On the left, there was a white plastic patio table covered in a plastic tablecloth and various brochures about the local attractions. Don't ask me why, because I had never done it before, but I was trying to be cool and was so nervous that I decided to sit on the plastic table. Which of course collapsed underneath me. And I landed in a heap on the floor, surrounded by various leaflets, a tablecloth and two halves of a table. I hadn't seen Marc for about a month and his first image of me was a big clumsy oaf, and of course he hadn't quite closed the door yet so all the campsite staff saw exactly what had happened as well. But at least it broke the ice. We both fell about laughing and it was as if we had never been apart.

The next 3 weeks were certainly some of the best of my life. We spent all our time together, toured the area on Marc's motorbike and had so much fun!! It just confirmed that we had made the right decision - we were made for each other and no distance could keep us apart. The end of Marc's holiday was of course really sad, but at least this time, we knew that this was just the beginning.

10 months later, I gave up everything in England to live with Marc. On October 26th last year, we got married.

And they all lived happily ever after ;o)


oktoberfest at 3:11 p.m.

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