When this posts I will be in England with my musician boyfriend. We didn’t go last year…it’s just so darned pricey, getting all the way over there from Hawaii. But his mom is sick. Cancer. So we are going.
She actually lives in Wales in a very small town where he grew up. But we are arranging a few days visiting various castles (castles are my thing), including St Michael’s Mount in Cornwall at Land’s End, one that has been very high on my list for ages now, can you guess why? We will finally also see Stone Henge, also high on my list for even longer. We missed it last time because we got there too late and it was closed. Closed! Yes, now you need an appointment and a ticket, you can’t just drive up. I suppose it is to protect the ancient enigmatic structure but oh so frustrating.
And while in Wales we will be staying in the city center in Cardiff, only a few miles from her, so we can enjoy some shopping, sightseeing and nightlife in the off times. I am looking forward to a bit of off time and a little adventure amidst the harder part of this trip.
Some of the other writers here talk about new relationships quite a bit more than I even though the musician and I have been together for four years now. We met - maybe too quickly - after Mike died, but he has been instrumental in my journey. Through him I met so many new and important friends, many of them also widows. And he got me out of the house and gave me things to look forward to. Will it be a forever thing? Not sure about that. Only working on right now, it’s all I can handle.
The first time we went to the UK together was in 2014, and we went again in 2015. Those trips plus the occasional phone calls allowed me to develop a relationship with his mom that was unexpected. I wasn’t really in it for family, and a part of me did not want to get close to another “in-law” type situation as it comes with a lot of strings and responsibilities. But, she is so sweet and has very little else in her life. And now that she is sick, she practically begged us both to come, since we missed last year. My musician is footing the bill for much of my trip, and really we got a good deal, traveling this slow month of September.
Of course Mike, and all my memories, are always hovering around. How much he would have loved to see these places, but knowing he could not do the walking it requires, especially in the last few years.
I talk to him sometimes, explaining things I am doing, though I figure he knows them already. I sometimes wonder that he didn’t have something to do with the musician appearing in my life when he did anyway. But it doesn’t stop that little nagging feeling of guilt. Is it guilt? Maybe just regret, that he can’t be here anymore. That I can’t be planning trips with him instead.
But I cannot. I can only take him with me in my heart.