Cheeky Girl - First Encounters
Cheeky Girl - I'm just drawn this way!
(This Hub article, which is also my first ever hub - is currently the subject of a forthcoming book about Cheeky Girl)
The moment my heart saw her, I stopped and stared at her. I was a woman looking across a room at another woman, feeling as though I had been struck by lightning. Her hair was shoulder length short and dark, her skin a deep olive brown, and her eyes a warm and inviting brown. She looked at me and smiled. I was just helpless looking at her. Smitten is the word. I went over to her and struck up a polite conversation.
It was at an art gallery, crowded with money people. As a PA, I have to sometimes stand patiently with my boss and view art of all kinds. I once chatted to Ronnie Wood of the Rolling Stones. Nice man, switched on man. He gets those moments, or they get him, (being around women helps), a rush of something, and he just has to grab a brush and paint. Artists are deep people. And they love talking about art if you let them.
So mixing was essential, as they say in artistic circles. She was a young professional, in her early 20’s, and I was attracted to her. I have often been in the position when I was attracted to a woman, but the woman was not interested in me. C’est la vie. I am what some people call “straight-acting gay”. Although I am actually bi-sexual. But that’s the Americans for you. I hate that full-on, in-your-face gay thing. I have a rule; I don’t date men and women at the same time. I multi-task, but not that way. I have not been in that many relationships with girls, mostly older women, who seem happy to be with a young woman in her mid 20’s. Which I am. I am a young, fit, twenty something cheeky girl with prospects, who likes other girls. I am part Italian, so I am dark, and my cheeky and childish humour often warms a dreary day. And this day had been too dreary.
My new friend seemed to be really nice, and came from a big family. (Anything bigger than my family of me and my two grandparents was big.) She easily talked about herself, which was a novelty. She was well spoken, well travelled. She had nice manicured hands. I like that in a person. She was wearing a dress that was grey, and it fitted her trim waist perfectly, and a nice black top, which revealed enough of her bosom for me to know she was petite and packing! She wore dark full length stockings over her shapely legs. I told her I was raised by my grandparents, my parents died when I was young. I made humorous comments about art, she liked my cheeky sense of humour. We walked around and looked at art, liking and not liking. It was a gallery after all. Then disaster struck at a large forest scene with bathers chasing a big black dog, when she excused herself and went and joined a crowd of other women, and I was by myself. (Didn’t Winston Churchill say something once about a black dog?) H’mm, did I scare her off? My dropping the hint that I was Bisexual? Did she run off to look it up in a dictionary? A man was trying to chat me up, but he really wasn’t my type. And God, that mottled, creased tie just wasn’t working.
I had my second glass of wine, leaving the forest for a kitchen scene drenched in Hitchcockian drama, deciding that the art was a more worthy investment than the people viewing it. It was the mood I seemed to be falling into. Few people were buying here tonight.
My last girlfriend had been a married woman, a senior figure in a learning college, tall and athletic; she had been my friend and lover for almost a year. I had been a senior student. (Another qualification beckons.) I had caught her roving eye, and we had instantly clicked. Yes, I had a warm and good relationship with her, and we are still good friends. I still don’t know what her husband made out of our relationship, and two holidays together in Italy. I seem to find I go for older women! I wondered what was the name of the wine.
My evening in the gallery drew to a close, and the two artists were
applauded and thanked for their wonderful art, some of which I would definitely
want to add to my new apartment wall. The younger artist, a guy, was kind of
cute in a clueless innocent way. Minimalist figurative abstraction is a big
thing with me. Just as things were winding down, my lady friend appeared from
nowhere and asked would I like to join her party, and she hinted heavily that
she was interested in me. There was something about those large expressive
brown eyes that seemed keen and inviting and so friendly. So like a moth to a
flame, I consented, and finding myself in a large car with six loudly chatting
females, we made our way to a big bar nearby. I suspected she might be closet
gay, so I made sure my eye contact didn’t give anything away.But it wasn't easy.
It was a Thursday evening in Soho, in a city of possibilities. Inside we ordered drinks, and I took stock of the situation. This girl that I fancied was part Asian, and lived close by. She became very friendly, (it was the wine, I’m sure of it now) and we got intimate in a general sitting-around-but-with-knees-almost-touching way. Curiously, we had the exact same iPhone. She made a big thing of that. She tended to repeat things a bit, and I must have been smiling because she went red suddenly and said “Am I repeating myself?” When I removed my jacket, and revealed arms that were tanned and slightly muscled, she picked up a bit! I work out. Oh really? Me too! Cool! I found she laughed easily and was very relaxed around me. Serious eye contact here. Her father was British Indian, her mother from Thailand. That explained her attractive features. The other women went off to the side bar to hang around and fish for any good men available, we remained in our cosy booth.
I told her the short version of the story of my life. Italy, Austria (my grandmother is Austrian), Uk, my schooling, losing my parents. Being an only child. She gave me a hug here, which was odd, but nice of her. She got points for that. She was soft-hearted. Mmmh, she smelled nice. I told her I worked for a Hedge Fund Manager. I didn’t tell her he was a millionaire. I told her I was a career woman. And very independent. I was telling her about my life being kind of full, yet somehow empty. How so, she asked, sipping her drink, watching me intently.
I suddenly found myself saying something I have never said before. Ever. I asked myself – why is it we get all this life, if we don’t ever use it?
Wow, talk about weird. She stared at me in wonder. I wanted to laugh, she looked so serious. We both laughed. But there was a moment there, something in her face, as she looked at me. I wanted to kiss her right there, right in the damn bar, but I didn’t. I think she sensed it. God, I was really into her. She was making a big deal about how good my arms looked. Yes, dear, they’re called triceps, and anyone could have them, its called exercise. I am a tennis freak, heck I even used to play girls fooball, which she found amusing. Why, I asked? Everyone loved women playing tennis. So why not football? A contact sport with females. What could be better? Swimming, she answered. You see more, you mean, I said. She flushed. It’s ok, I like that too, I continued, simply – filling the silence. We looked at each other.
I found her looking at my mouth and lips a lot. I crinkled them into a smile and she flushed again. That killed me. Her eyes just couldn’t lie. She liked that I was honest from the outset about being gay. She said it. She didn’t seem able to admit she was gay herself. I didn’t push her. There was no need. She cautiously mentioned some other girls she knew, in a roundabout way, some of whom she had snogged. I knew she was a closet lesbian, oh so curious, and wanted us to be even closer. God, she was so alive. So vital and sexy, if only she could see it. She wanted to explore things more. And safely. So did I. People with glass houses never throw stones.
A woman trusts a woman who is sure of things, and who is in control of things, in a sense. When someone is not sure how to proceed, and craves experience, guidance is what counts. I found in this new relationship (which is still on-going) my surprise to find that for the first time, I was now being the older woman, though not by much! I work as a personal assistant to a wealthy businessman, a perfect gentleman, a rare thing in the corporate world. I have money, a business degree, my own home, a car, a future. By the end of this slow warm Soho evening, I was about to have a new Girlfriend.
We went back to my apartment, had coffees (mine was decaffeinated), then a quick tour of the two bedroom apartment; study, TV room with (Gasp!) a library, kitchen, (Hey, you have a fruit blender! Cool!) and of course my bedroom, with its crazy design features, (Hey, that’s crazy! Who did this? A designer. Amazing. Blah blah, whatever) and up steps and through a door onto a roof deck with its stunning view of late night London. Aaah, London. It was warm, it was late, we were alone. The city was going into slumber mode.We looked at each other, both wanting the same thing, each sensing the urgency in the other. We had our first kiss. It was just natural, like that.
If a kiss isn’t right, the other things that come later are irrelevant. That is my belief. I won’t bore or explain too much, but she was wonderful. Her longer hair than mine flowed around her oval aquiline face, her eyelids fluttered in the heat of the moment. Her moan was soft yet surprised, and joyous. I put on some Tom Waits, and we chatted and held each other. Her waist was tiny, arms a bit delicate. We held each other in ways that make exploring easy and a joy. Hands moved over bodies through our clothes. My belly tingled with sensations. She was mannered and intelligent, two qualities that will get a good woman many things in life. I was being secretly judgemental both close up and from afar. She was my type, same height, relatively fit, and less nervous than earlier. She was a coming out chick. Like me, she wasn’t into drugs, but drank a bit. She cradled her coffee cup like a precious animal.
She volunteered that she had never spent the night with a woman before. We were talking about girlfriends now. I understood. She was sifting through my cd collection, fingering the ones she liked, and looking at the 42 inch flat Samsung monster TV on the wall that took two men to fix up there. We sat together and looked at each other for a long time, she was holding my album of Florence and the Machine. She took in my appearance. She seemed to be deciding something with herself. Nerves again. Damn that closet. Something was coming; I could see her close to what seemed like tears. It is the look of a girl on the verge of coming out. She asked me – oh so slowly - if she could spend the night with me. Inside my heart, I was dancing. A warm glow ran through my body. Her name was Cathy Nerujen. Her warm brown eyes were pleading me. She was divine. She had guts, I’ll give her that. I took her trembling hand and gave it a squeeze. I asked her what she would like for breakfast. Her brilliant smile melted my heart. We kissed again. God, those sensual lips. Her dazzling sweet smile. Far off in the distance I thought I heard a riff from a song by Florence and the Machine.
Dear Heaven, I wondered. Could this be Love?
Copyright (c) 2009 - 2014 Cassy Mantis. Art and text (c) Copyright Cassy Mantis.
Second Encounters and what happened next is right here...
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I am currently working on the book and the bigger fuller story of how I met Cathy. Yes, I have bit the bullet and finally decided to chronicle this story and other poignant and humorous stories that happened along the way for this all too Cheeky Girl! The book will be published on Lulu.com. I will be announcing the book soon - and thanks to everyone for all the encouragement here with this project. Cheers!
More by this Author
Part 2 of 3 short stories of how I met Cathy Nerujen, poet & writer - a coming-out story. This is her coming out story and how we hooked up. Excerpt from a forthcoming book. Second Encounters.
Part 3 of a book excerpt charting how Cassy Mantis met Cathy Nerujen, poet and blogger and coming out girl. This "meet the parents" story extract captures the pains of opening up to parents.
We hate change, and we need change. Change challenges our peace and seems bad. But is a change a good thing? This is about why we need change, no matter what happens.