Dealing With Loss

Dealing with loss is the oddest feeling.

It can leave you aching and destroy you from the inside out.

There are many different types of loss.

A friend of mine contacted me late last night, her mum isn’t too well.

No absolute diagnosis yet, but fearing the worst. Having been there and written about it on here, I feel for her.

My advice, appreciate your loved ones while they are here.

Hug your parents, spend time with them, listen to what they tell you and tell them you love them.

The love we feel for our children is the love they feel for us.

They will protect us from knowing their fears and worries.

So of course they aren’t going to want to share all the details with you, but they will still be afraid.

It must be terrifying to know that your time is defintely limited, that mortality is getting closer.

Your love and hugs aren’t going to change anything, it won’t make the inevitable that we all face go away.

But it will make it easier for them it will make them feel wanted and appreciated and that their life had meaning.

I remember once upon a time, it seems like yesterday anda lifetime ago. When summers seemed to last forever and the sun often shone even while it was raining.

An hour never seemed to pass and the summer holidays seemed endless.

But now we are the adults, time is accelerating, it will be our turn to face that mortality soon enough.

Until then, cherish every day, live your life and hug your children, protect them from fear and let them flourish.

If you are very lucky, you have the security of a loved one in your life. Make sure they know that you love them.

The loss of a partner is a different game, knowing somehow that they are out there somewhere .. just not with you.

My advice, let them go, if they truly love you then they will come back.

But don’t wait around forever!! 🙂

Tonight – Rod Stewart opens the new Glasgow Hydro with a 4 night sellout concert series.

I had tickets for tonight, but gave them to my friend Paul who did the joinery work on my recent house changes.

Him and his wife Angel will have a fab night, she’s been peeing her pants for tickets, so I’m happy to help.

My favourite Rod song below.

Filthy Gorgeous!

Friday again .. Yaaaay!

This weekend, my body is a temple .. mibee!!

Claire already at her mums, got an empty and the potential to do anything I want.

Catching up with a friend of mine at their works night out tonight, as long as we go dancing later then I’ll be fine.

I’ve got my headphones on listening to feel good tunes and I’m in the mood to dance my socks off!

Drinking or diving tho?

Friday again .. Yaaaay!

This weekend, my body is a temple .. mibee!!

Claire already at her mums, got an empty and the potential to do anything I want.

Catching up with a friend of mine at their works night out in the Merchant City tonight, as long as we go dancing later then I’ll be fine.

I’ve got my headphones on listening to feel good tunes and I’m in the mood to dance my socks off!

Drinking or driving tho?

Hmmmm .. not sure if I can be bothered with drinking. I suffered last weekend after hitting the Stella form 9pm to 1am .. lightweight!

Last night I did the walk/run fom Caldercruix to Bathgate, parked at Caldercruix, walked/ran to Bathgate, stopped in for a beer and a chat at Bathgate and then jumped the train back to Caldercruix and drove home.

Walk run .. walk to warm up, run as far as you can, walk to you recover, do it again.

We’ve done that a few times now and our times are getting bettter as we run more than walk.

This Sunday we’re stepping up the distance and doing a half marathon from Airdrie to Bathgate, 13.4 miles according to google maps, but going along the cycle path besides the train line. No traffic, great countryside, fresh air, magic.

I’m down 8 pounds since my cruise holiday in August, slow but sure progress, the best way.

So why spoil that?

Because life is for living!! 🙂

Decision made.

Tonight, no car, a couple of beers, dancing .. but no late night food!

Tomorrow, want to see the new James McAvoy movie Filth based on the Irvine Welsh novel of the same name.

It’s a darkly humerous story of a bigoted, sexist, maipulative and frankly depraved police detective, with a surreal backstory.

Having read the book many years ago, I am surprised that this one made the big screen as the guy is .. well .. a sick fucker.

But it has the typical Irvine Welsh humour and insight into the darker walks of life.

Whatever you are doing .. be filthy and gorgeous!

That Innocent First Kiss!

By the time she was 15, she already had a figure to die for.

At 17 she was voluptuous, stacked, all the right curves in all the right places. You name it, she had it, she was every mans fantasy girl and the first girl this boy ever fancied.

She was a younger better looking, slimmer, shapelier version of Nerys Hughes, the good looking one from The Liver Birds, that BBC must-watch comedy of the time, two girls living together, going on dates, meeting men, being dumped, everyone fancied Sandra, no-one I know fancied Beryl.

Irene was a few years older than me, that few years at that age make all the difference.

She was a woman, I was a wee boy, but my God did I fancy her!!

I was the same age as her younger sister Sandra. We used to play together in the back court, a couple of kids, playing chases and not knowing what to do if you caught her.

Irene and Sandra lived in the tenement next to us, a much nicer apartment and more spacious.

Sandra was lovely, a really nice wee girl and we were good friends.

But Irene was just absolutely gorgeous, my first childhood fantasy girl as I became aware of my own sexuality.

At 17, she was aware of her high-level of attraction and would love to wind up men.

We lived in Linthouse besides the Govan shipyards and when the gates would open at 4:30pm, thousands of men would escape from their work, rushing home along the Govan Road.

I never realised it at the time, but thinking back now, I remember Irene would often be at the café at the end of our street and then deliberately walk through the crowd of men in the opposite direction getting lots of attention and wolf-whistles, she knew what she was doing. At the time I wondered why.

Irene aged 16, used to baby-sit for my brother Mark who was born when I was 14. If I knew she was coming in to watch Mark, then I’d make sure I was home from the playing football in the park early, just so that I could talk to her and we’d often sit on the couch watching tv laughing.

She wasn’t just good looking, but she was soft and friendly and I just liked being with her. She had a lovely personality and could find humour in almost anything. I never heard her once speak about anyone in a bad way.

One Saturday night, sitting on the sofa with Irene watching tv, Mark sleeping in his cot and my other 2 brothers were in bed. The house seemed quiet, the lights were low and it was dark outside.

She was sitting to my right and somehow she seemed to be closer than usual. I could feel her presence beside me, her legs tucked under her as she curled up on the couch watching tv but it felt that she was facing me.

A few minutes later, she put her arm behind me .. innocent enough, but she seemed even closer.

I could feel her looking at me and when I glanced towards her, she wasn’t watching tv any longer.

I could feel myself almost tremble with excitement, I didn’t have a clue what to do.

Irene moved closer, her left arm on my shoulder and I could feel the warm of her breathe on my cheek. I could feel my sinews tighten and my nerves firing as if my skin was on fire, waiting on her touch.

Thinking back to that moment, I was holding my breathe, waiting to see what would happen next. I had fantasised about this moment, I had imagined that on those previous occasions we had snogged and kissed and how much I wanted her.

But at that moment on the sofa, my brain wasn’t working and I didn’t have a clue.

Irene moved closer still, her face was inches from my cheek, I could feel myself flush with excitement and my heart throbbing in my chest.

She put her tongue in my ear and started to nibble, it felt good in a strange tickly way.

Then she leaned forward put her mouth towards mine and kissed me on the lips.

What happened next?

For some stupid, stupid reason I jumped up and told her I needed to go to the bathroom.

To my dying day, I will both regret that moment and savour its innocence at the same time.

Last night, at my dads, I asked him what he’d been up to, he told me that he had been to a funeral. I expected that it would be one of his cronies from one of his clubs, they are at the age where it’s almost one per week.

Dad told me that it was his friend Brian’s wife, Irene and that I should know her as I used to play with her younger sister when I was a kid.

Irene sadly passed away last Tuesday after a long battle against Cancer and was buried in sunny Govan yesterday.

When I heard the news and writing this now, I’m not ashamed to say that I cried for her loss even although we didn’t have any contact in our adult years.

It’s like part of my childhood has died.

I’ve never forgotten her and that first innocent kiss, I never will.

The Platform Lovers – 15 – Friends?

The train was packed, even busier than usual, it had arrived 10 minutes later than normal and must have picked up more passengers along the way.

Catriona was browsing Facebook while she waited, her dad said that she was never off the thing and that she should leave her mobile down at the dinner table.

As for his attempts to send her a friends request .. as if!

She knew that he probably did it to wind her up, he would often tell his friends in front of her that she didn’t want to be friends with him, then laugh and say who’d want their dad looking at what they were up to!

Dad’s what are they like, a total embarrassment and that’s only if you’re lucky.

But he was always there for her, that’s what really mattered, when mum had moved in with her new man to that dump of a high-rise, when she needed advice or money, or just someone to talk to, he was always there.

They’d had their ups and downs, she’d hated him when he left the family home, leaving her with her alcoholic mother. That period had been the worst in her life, but she was just 11 then just a kid and didn’t understand why he was leaving.

She even wrote him a note at the time, telling him how much she hated him and that she didn’t want to see him again ever. She hadn’t really meant it, but she wanted to hurt him. She wanted him to feel the pain that he was causing her.

That was 10 years ago, now she was almost 23 and almost finished her degree at Glasgow University. She had been in a relationship for a few years until fairly recently which had ended in a spectacular disaster. Her boyfriend was so insecure that he needed to know where she was every minute of the day, even when she was with her dad, for Gods sake, whats that about?

But she had learned a tough lesson in life, if a partner is abusive then walk away because if you tolerate it and make excuses for it, then its only going to get worse.

Who would want to live like that?

When she packed her bags and left their flat, “his flat” as he kept telling her. The first person she called was her dad, she knew that he’d be there for her, picking her up and taking her home, making sure she was safe and telling her she was better off out of it.

Now she appreciated why he had left.

The train is absolutely packed and its standing room only, she lets the old lady with the case get on first and then when she sees the lady struggle she takes the handle and lifts it onboard, it feels as if she is going away for a month as it is so heavy.

The lady must be about 70, grey and wrinkly, but looks happy and has kind smiley eyes like a well loved granny. She thought that the lady would make a great grandmother and was certain that her family adore her. Although she wondered why she was getting on a train and not being picked up or taking a taxi.

Now, they squeeze together in the carriageway, there are no seats available, and its difficult for the old lady to get reach for the handrails.

A voice from behind them “Excuse me, would you like my seat?”

They turn to see the student with the dark curly hair standing guard over his seat but his offer is clear.

“That would be very kind of you” the woman relief is obvious and she seems slightly unsteady on her feet as she takes the few steps towards her seat.

“It’s not a problem, I’d like to think that someone would do the same for my gran if she was struggling with her heavy bags”

The lady gets herself settled, then goes into her handbag and to Catriona’s surprise, pulls out a mobile phone and starts to text someone, probably a member of her family that’s she’s on the train, then starts her Facebook app and updates her status.

For the next 10 minutes they stand almost squeezed against each other, Catriona can smell his underarm deodorant as he reaches above her head to the handrail.

She’s aware, of the occasional eye contact between them and feels that she should say something to thank him for helping the old lady. Most people don’t seem to do that these days and shut themselves off with their phones for the short journey into town.

He occasionally smiles at her, and she feels herself blush slightly in this uncomfortably close space. But neither of them say a word, its far too public to have a conversation with a complete stranger.

The train arrives at Glasgow Central low level, the old lady has stood up to and is waiting to pull her case the few steps to the door. Catriona is about to help her lift her it down on to the platform, but curly beats her to it.

“Let me help you with that heavy case, do you want me to lift it up the stairs for you?”

“Thank you, but I’ll take the lift, I’m getting another train from the higher level and I’ll be fine from here”

“No problem I didn’t like to see you struggling”

The train doors open and there is a push as it empties with some of the numpties in the waiting crowd try to get on while people are getting off.

Curly lifts the case to the platform whilst Catriona takes the lady by the hand and helps her down from the high step from the train to the platform.

“Thank you both so much, you make a lovely couple” She smiles and waves as she starts to pull her case towards the lift.

Catriona and Curly walk towards the steps, so close together but the silence between them is deafening.

Curly breaks it.

“You go to Glasgow, don’t you?”

Catriona, is surprised that he recognises her.

“Yes, I’m studying law, what about you?”

“I’m in my last year of radiography and can’t wait to finish, but I often see you in the canteen, you always seem to be eating salads?”

She smiles at his observation “Are you saying I’m fat?”

“No, not at all, I think you look fantastic, are you on Facebook?”


Note to reader loosely based on my train journey this morning.

I was the old lady!! 🙂

Always The Last To Know! – Part 1

He saw her again today.

He timed it, 15 minutes and then her profile disappeared from the site.

She was obviously messing around with her image and visibility settings, making herself visible, attracting some iinterest, confident that he was on the road, heading home.

Confident that he wouldn’t see what she was up to.

But not tonight.

It had been a strange night, making dinner together, sitting there, trying to play nice, keeping a smile on his face when all the time his inner voice wanted to scream .. “What the fuck are you doing back online?”

They hadn’t even made love, they hadn’t even even attempted to sneak a quicky upstairs.

Pretending to her kids that he was going upstairs to look at her new dress .. her undress more like.

But even the kids weren’t that stupid. Of course they knew.

On a couple of occasions, there was that small voice from the bedroom when the younger one had walked in to see his mum.

Lame excuses on muffled noices from the ensuite and the sounds of fumbled clothing.

Then she’d rush out saying that she was using the loo. Ignoring the little ones quizzical looks about why the two of them were in the bathroom.

He remembered those early days, that first kiss, uncertain if she would find him attractive, uncertain if they would have any of that elusive chemistry and uncertain if there would be a second date.

That seemed so long ago now, 20 months.

20 months of love and joy, some ups and downs like everybody else as they knocked off the rough edges.

19 months ago, just after they’d slept together for the first time, that weekend away in Edinburgh, just 40 minutes from Glasgow, but like another world where the streets were unfamiliar and everything was new, from the bars to her breasts.

They’d lay in bed, both logged into the dating site and simultaneously closed their accounts, laughing and glad that they’d found each other.

And now, he’s sitting in his car parked round the block from her house, safely out of sight, spying on her electronically.

He hated himself for doing it, hated himself for being so weak and avoiding the confrontation.

Friends close, enemies closer he thought ..

Get your pieces in place before you play for a check-mate.

Trying to stay focussed and calm while simultaneously blocking out the screams from his inner rage .. Yeah yeah, bollocks, just tell the bitch .. tell her to get to fuck.

He’d not been sleeping lately, he could feel the distance between them growing,   This was making it worse, it was self-fulfilling in smaller circles as the decay set in.

The anxiety of making the right decision was keeping him awake.

When he left hers tonight, he was consciously taking his time, dragging his heels wanting to say more, then parting with a hug and a peck, how bad can it be?

The hug was cold and she barely held her arms around him and although they had smiled there was no warmth in her eyes and he thought that they both knew it was almost over.

What happend to all that passion?

What happened to lust and not being able to keep your hands off each other?

He had only stumbled upon this secret knowledge by accident, accidentally clicking on the website, then wondering if she had a membership.

That was 4 weeks ago, 4am browsing because he couldn’t get back to sleep.  It had been a difficult weeekend.

He didn’t actually expect there to a response when he keyed her email address into the password reset account.

But there it was in a big blue dialogue box “An email containing your password reset request has been sent”

He stared at it in disbelief .. no .. it can’t be? She can’t be online .. not now, not after all they had been through.

He keyed it in again and the message was the same.


His nerves fired, 1am and he should be relaxing but every synapse is firing in his shredded mind.

He wants to call her, but knows that would be crazy .. it’s late, she got kids .. don’t be stupid.

Don’t be so stupid.

Why has she signed up to this? Whats went wrong with them? When did that happen?

His sensible side kicked in and he created an account, then searched for her, but he couldn’t see her, she was clever enough to stay invisible, hiding her profile from his eyes .. but why have a profile at all?

He’d been looking for her at random times of the day, at work, sitting on his mobile because he couldn’t access the site on the office network.

The following evening after they’d had a late night call and he said that he was going to sleep.    She said she was tired too and she’d speak to him in the morning.

But she seemed rushed and in too much of a hurry to get away.

He could feel her desperation,  he knew that this was the time.

He logged on to his profile and it didn’t take long to find her .. smiling in her photo , even one that they had taken on that week in Ibiza.

He added her as a favourite and filled out his profile to attract her, idealsed himself to what he perceived she wanted, made himself more interesting and waited to see what would happen next.


An hour later she disappeared.

He sent her an email, “Hi there, I’ve just enjoyed reading your profile and thought I’d say hello, let me know if you are interested and want to know more. X”

He waited for days, not knowing of she’d read his attempt at contact .

He agonised, he couldn’t stop thinking about her.

That weekend they were out for dinner, her mum watching the kids and then back at hers, making love in front of the tv, keeping the noise low so as not to wake her num or the kids upstairs, his head spinning, wondering if she had met anyone yet.

He came inside thrusting hard, a hateful bittter fuck and he hated hiself for it.

“Are you okay” she asked, holding him and pulling his head into her breasts.

“I’m fine, just a bit tired, its been a long week” and he kissed her, holding himself above her looking at her eyes, looking for a sign, something that gave her heart and thoughts away, then wondering if this was the last time he would see that sparkle.

“Whats up” she asked, confusion in eyes.

“I just wanted to look at you” and he smiles knowing that he loves her, that he always loved her.

The past few days they’d been back to normal living their separate lives, working and looking after their kids.

Tonight was “nice” .. nice, an insipid meaningless word .. average, bland, forgettable.

Kind of like the evening although he felt that this evening would be anything but.

He hit the refresh icon on the browser for the 100th time, this would be his last before he started the car and took the 20 minute journey home.

She would be expecting a call or a text from him to let her know he was home safely.

But there it was the email, one message in his in box and from her.


Note to reader, totally made this up . had a bit of a downer of a weekend, then heard this song on my iphone.

Love it, but it is so sad!

I Want Your Love!

It’s Friday ….. and I’m feeling good .. 

I woke up this morning with a hard-on and a song playing in my head, Chic – I Want Your Love .. oh yes please baby!

Just met a target for delivery of current piece of work, a week early, time to chill out, headphones on, listen to friday feeel good music .. love that song .. not just the bass and Nile Rogers rhythm guitar but check the brass and those sexy vocals in the live version below.

I want your love .. I want .. your love!

Tonight, ex-works night out in town at 5pm .. oh my god .. carnage by 9 .. disaster zone by 12!

I’m going to pop in at 5 for a couple of beers then head home and take the munchkin to her mums.

Back in town for 9, probably not too clever as they’ll be on a different level .. but being a lightweight it won’t take me long to catch up.

By midnight .. who knows!!

As long as we go clubbing then I’ll be a happy bhoy!

Tomorrow .. joiner in .. last phase of the house, remainder of flooring to be laid and skirtings back on.

Celtic at home in the afternoon and we’ll take the rest as it comes!

Whatever you are doing … dance, sing and have fun!!

Everybody Dance!!


Ballad Of The Bastard?

i crushed your heart in my bloody fists
when i did the honest thing and told you of my trysts:
you demanded truth, that’s exactly what you got,

you should’ve killed me there right where i stood
when i casually confessed that i’d been up to no good;
you should’ve just stepped back and taken your best shot,

but i assured you then that i could change my ways,
and i think that might’ve lasted for a couple of days
and once again the self-styled lady killer’s caught,

the sensible solution is to walk away,
but I’ll cunningly convince you that you’ve got to stay,
i’ll poison your resolve and twist your every thought,

i don’t love you, who knows if i ever did?
who the fuck did i think i was trying to kid?
you’re just the latest sucker that i’ve sought,

everyone is scared of being on their own,
i thought i was the master but my cover’s blown,
consider me a lesson deftly taught

Bill Wells and Aidan Moffat

How brilliantly depressing is that song?

Its just far too clever. wish I’d written it and thinking of weaving it into one of my wee stories.

The protaganist reminds me of Cameron in the film This Years Love played by Dougray Scott. A slimey lazy sleazeball and like all good rom-coms he get his come uppence in the end.

Although, my favourite is still the checkout scene .. love it!

The Platform Lovers – 14 – Delicious Torture!

Their lunch seemed to pass in a blur of eyes, teeth, hair and breasts.

He found himself having to consciously focus on her eyes to stop staring her cleavage

Now that’s just rude, he knew that, no girl really wants that. Flattery is one thing but a guy not listening to word you say and staring at your tits?

Not good.

Fortunately her eyes and smile and laughter were just as appealing as her beautifully voluptuous please-just-let-me-put-my-head-in-between-them breasts.

He could listen to her all day. He wanted to listen to her all day.

She’s not only attractive, but intelligent, funny and so refreshingly different to the conversations he has in his day job and small social circle.

He knew that he was mesmerised, he found himself telling her how lucky he was to have met her on more than a few occasions internally slapping himself for being such a sap.

It was a second date for Gods sakes, behave yourself!

Fortunately, this didn’t seem to bother her and he wondered if she was feeling flattered by his heartfelt openness or if she was humouring him?

He had been thinking about her since he had woken in the darkness at 5am. Their first date seemed to go so much better than he hoped for and they had went home separately and had been on the phone for an hour each saying how pleased they were to have met at last.

But it’s a funny game, this dating malarkey, even when things are good, you can never really tell how the other person feels and you wonder if they like you as much as you like them.

His father, the wisest man that he had ever known, would tell him to keep his cards close to his chest and not to jump in too soon. He knew that, he had used these rules in his business life and they had always stood him in good stead.

Dad would also tell him to always negotiate with sales people from a position of power rather than weakness and never show that you really want or need the object of your desires or you’ll appear desperate and the price will stay high.

Should these normal rules of business and life count where your heart is concerned?

They may well have seemed sensible at 5am when he was telling himself not to jump in too deep too quickly or you’ll get hurt or scare the girl away.

But now, sitting in her car, looking into her greeny blue eyes, or are are they bluey green? He just can’t seem to help himself.

“You really are absolutely stunning” He gushes then blushes knowing that this is the umpteenth time he has said it today.

“Thank you, but you don’t need to keep telling me” and she smiled, that beaming smile.

He smiles back, grateful for letting him off, but then telling himself to get a grip on it.

“I know, but I’ve not been out a lot recently and certainly not with any attractive women”

“That’s okay, relax, lets just enjoy each others company and take it from there, okay?”

He kisses her again; mouths open and pulling her towards him, his right hand on the back of her neck, enjoying the touch as he pushes it through her thick hair.

His left hand is stretching across the car to her waist, he can just about reach but as she leans towards him it just feels so natural to let it slide under her breast, to cup it in his hand. His hand moves towards her, but he can’t, he doesn’t want to push his luck, he wants this dream to continue.

So he stops himself, his fingers running along the under-wire of her bra, feeling the weight of her breast without taking it in his hand. So close yet so far away.

He doesn’t want to stop kissing her, he knows that eh will have to go back to the office soon, but her mouth just feels right against his and he wonders why he seems to be sucking her upper lip, it just feels so good.

He imagines, its her pussy and he wants to taste her, he wants to kiss her all over and pleasure her. But he knows that they are nowhere near that stage yet, he’s even scared to tell her how much he wants to make love to her.

So for now, he is happy to breathe in her sweet heady perfume and have that occasional glance down her cleavage, feeling so alive and realising that he has been asleep for years, denying parts of himself because of the responsibilities of bringing up a young family on his own whilst trying to hold down his career.

He is lost in the moment and doesn’t want to let her go, but she pulls away from him, pushing her hair back behind her head, her mouth pouting and then glancing round at the people passing in the street.

“What are we like? Aren’t we both supposed to be grown-ups?”

He’s looking at her, wanting more but knowing that the clock is ticking and he needs to be back in his office soon.

“Yeah, but you know that I want you and I’m finding it really difficult to behave myself”

“I know, I feel the same, but there’s lots of time to get to know each other better”

“I know and it feels like absolute torture!” his left arm back on his side of the car.

“Yes, but isn’t it delicious?” 🙂

And I need you more than want you.

And I need you more than want you
And I want you for all time

Great lyrics from The Wichita Lineman, I’d forgotten how fantastic that song is.

It paints a graphic picture of an ordinary working man then in the 2 lines above turns into a beautiful lovesong.

Those lines say it all really..

Written by Jimmy Webb when I was a kid, but I can remember being at family parties and hearing Glen Campbell singing this and By The Time I Get To Pheonix.

Jimmy is a fantastic writer, also famous for Galveston and bizarrely MacArthur PArk which when I heard for the first time back in 1978 being covered by Donna Summer seems so incongrous with the country feel of his other songs.

I’m sitting at work at the moment, iphone and headphones on listening to The Johnny Cash version of The Wichita Lineman, but I also love the Gomez version .. and can feel a listen to MacArthur Park coming around soon .. well its nearly the weekend!

Love the version of MacArthur Park below with the missing verses from the single

A strange wonderfully melodic dijointed song,

Someone left my cake out in the rain ….

Whit??!! 🙂

The Platform Lovers – 13 – Casual!

Part 13 – Casual!

Graeme, closed the briefcase and locked it inside his desk.

It was almost lunchtime and he was feeling nervous with excitement. A feeling he hadn’t had for over 25 years.

This was the first time that he hadn’t worn his suit to work in as long as he could remember. It was part uniform, part comfort blanket and he’d worn one suit or another to the bank every day for the past 30 years since he had started as a young teller.

His suits had changed over the years, beginning with those cheap suits from Littlewoods that his parents had bought him, then when he qualified in 1990 and earning a reasonable age, he could afford a fashionably double breasted suit from Next.

Those became passé in the early naughties and he moved to a three-button and now a more classically cut two-button fit, made to measure from that little independent tailors on Howard Street.

Now that he is the regional retail director at the hank, he could afford to pay a little extra for his uniform to put some distance between himself and the young upstarts and it helped that the company gave him a generous clothing allowance.

Today he had woke up with a smile on his face, the first time that he had done so in a very long time. But there was no time for dreaming, time was of the essence and his routine was tight, he had to get the kids up and take them to school and then run for the train. The 8:45 at Cambuslang usually got him into the office at 9:05, enough time to expect everyone else to be there and to notice any absentees on his arrival.

Somehow today, he didn’t feel so rushed, somehow today lateness and absentees didn’t really matter. His mind was on other things and he these petty things seemed below him.

The train was packed as usual, all the same people, heading to work, normally he didn’t even look at them and was too busy thinking about his meetings of the day and getting home early to be certain that he collected the Emily and James from the after-school service on time.

Normally he would stand at the door, making sure he would be first to leave the train and make his way up the stairs before they became crowded from the masses of 8 carriages trying to simultaneously make it up that one small stairway.

But he decided that there was no rush, the sun was shining and he felt warm inside, he took a seat opposite the man typing into the iPhone. He had seen this man in the jeans and tan boots many times over the years and he always seems to be typing into that iPhone.

He wondered what the man does? He sat down opposite him and for a moment he looked up and smiled then carried on typing. Ten minutes later they had arrived at Glasgow Central without saying a word and went their separate ways.

Graeme sauntered up Buchanan Street, looking in the windows of Frasers and Timberland, then stopping in front of Hugo Boss to look at their display of casual clothes, normally he would have gave the suits a quick glance but today was different.

He was aware that his appearance in the office would catch people’s attention and there would be questions from the people close enough to him to ask and whispers from those others who don’t really know him but wanted to know.

He walked through the main doors of the lobby, showing his pass to the security officers, aware of the raised eyebrows on the faces of these normally unflinching passive faces.

As the lift reached the fourth floor, he took a deep breathe knowing that the moment he walked through the door the gossip would start.

“Good morning Eileen!” He called to the receptionist as he stepped from the lift.

“Good morning sir!” She replied, like some old-fashioned secretary or a primary school-child still showing respect to their teacher before all discipline is lost.

“For heavens sake Eileen, don’t call me sir!” He had told her so many times and even asked Fraser to mention it in her quarterly appraisals. Tell her that it was unnecessary and actually quite unacceptable in the modern office and to come into the 21st century.

“Yes si .. Graeme” she corrected her self and blushed as she turned back to her PC.

He exchanged a few “Good mornings” as he walked through the open plan area to his office at the back, even a “Looking good” from someone behind him who’s voice he didn’t quite recognise.

Fiona, his PA, smiled at him as he approached, then started to finish of her personal phone call, telling whoever it was that she would call back at lunchtime.

He felt a slight relief and more relaxed as he made his private office and took off the causal jacket and slid into his chair.

Fiona arrived within moments, she’d been his PA for over ten years now, she knew most of his ups and downs both business and personal and he trusted her implicitly.

She quickly went through his meeting for the day, all internal meetings with the team or conference calls and no business meetings, nothing where he had to wear his uniform.

But he knew what she really wanted to know.

“So …. How did last night go then? Do you want to talk about it?”

“Hmmmm .. fantastic .. I think I’m in love!”

“Really? Did it go that well?” Fiona seemed somehow surprised.

“Yes, she is absolutely gorgeous and we had a great time.”

“I’m delighted for you, you deserve to have some happiness after the past few years. So when are you seeing her again?”

“We’re meeting for lunch”

“Aaah, that explains the jeans and the causal clothes”

“No big deal Fiona, it’s just time to make some changes and life has to move on. I know it sounds stupid, but I can’t wait to see her again”

“Good for you, I’m really pleased and hope that it goes really well”

“Thanks Fiona” he said as she vacated the office, noticing the faces looking at her face for an acknowlegement and heading for the kitchen where she’d pass on the word.

Graeme opened the briefcase, took out his laptop and started it up. Then he Maria a text, “Really looking forward to seeing you at 1 x”

Her response came quickly, “Can’t wait to see you too and thanks for being such a genteman last night, I had a really lovely time. X”

He smiled and picked up the phone to start the first conference call of the day, even although he knew that it would be hard to focus when his mind keeps wandering to thoughts of her blonde hair, long legs and tender kisses.