Weekly Writing Challenge: Moved by Music

My dad and I were discussing accommodation in Thailand. I told him that I was planning to find a retreat and meditate. You would swear by the face that he pulled that I had just told him I was planning to sell myself on the market in exchange for Thai fish cakes. ‘Ohhh NO. Don’t you bloody be doing things like that’.

Note to self: When dad pisses you off, threaten that you will mediate all over the place. That should sufficiently end any disagreement in your favour.

Although my parents can test my patience I must say I am grateful for the escape its given me from my bedsit existence near London. I did have some rip-roaring great nights though….By myself…With my iTunes. Who said that single life was dull?! Hell no! With the right wine and headphones (cant piss off the neighbours that live with you) you can really get your groove on. Firstly, you need to make sure that you have enough space for thunderous jumps, extreme hip thrusting and heart-felt miming (which can involve a lot of hand gestures and frightening facial expressions….Remember that expressing yourself is key). Now there is the choice of where you want to end up. That’s right, you read it correctly, music can take you down memory lane (hell lane, love lane, teenage lane etc.) Decide where you want to go pre-wine bottle….I mean glass! Pre-wine glass. Mentally prepare, sip wine, play tune and I will see you tomorrow…..

As sure as I am – Crowded house: I’m in Beijing. A miserable young girl who decided it would be a fabulous idea to board a plane to Beijing to teach English, with little in the pocket and even less in the mind. I am sat with my two flat mates. A guy from Liverpool and a guy from Texas. “I am as sure as I am. I couldn’t care less what might go wrong”. I am home sick and quite honestly being eaten alive by loneliness. The culture shock that I though I would be immune to has quite rightly given me a solid smack in the face. The three of us are sitting together in the apartment – the harsh winter freezing our undies that hang outside on the balcony, drinking questionable wine and stuffing dumplings down our throat. “Make your decision now, rely on no help from above”.

Cry me a river – Justin Timberlake: I’m in the car with my boyfriend. He pumps up the volume to the painful ‘ear shattering’ setting which makes me wince. “You don’t have to say, what you did, I already know, I found out from him. Now there’s just no chance, for you and me, there’ll never be and don’t it make you sad about it”. His eyes are popping out of his head, staring at me menacingly with the idea that I would ever be unfaithful. I know he is creating this movie worthy scene in his mind, me running off with some random lad. “Why are you directing this at me? I don’t understand why you would sing this to me when I barely leave the house, never mind cheat”. “I know princess…I’m not really singing it at you…I’m just singing!” He gives me the ‘I’m watching you’ look. Nothing like a bit of fear and projection to keep a relationship fresh.

Are you Strong enough to be my man – Sheryl Crow and Dixie Chicks: I am sitting on the double bed at a lodge in Sydney. My attention is on the industrial size cockroaches that are scuttling up and down the walls. I have the song on repeat and I am wondering where he is. My face is drawn and my skirt is hanging off my hip bones. I believe my boyfriend is telling me lies. Big, fat, whopping porkers. I choke back the tears and hope that I am wrong “Lie to me. I promise I’ll believe”.

Fireflies – Owl city: I’m walking along Coogee Bay, Sydney. I have my head phones on, strutting to the beat and feeling the Australian sun breathe life into my sallow skin. I’m heading to my see my boyfriend, who is staying with a fellow work colleague. I walk in and the place is filthy. Takeaway boxes and empty beer bottles line the tables and the counter tops. He is there sprawled out on the cream leather couch, naked. My stomach churns when I look at him and I am hit with a waft of whisky, vodka and beer. He has that certain kind of sweat that accumulates with a hangover. The kind that leaves a thick, pungent odour hanging in the air combined with the smell of stale tobacco. He is smoking and I don’t understand how he can smoke with such a painful hangover. He is angry that I have made a decision to leave him. I want him to put clothes on as it seems inappropriate that he is stretching and sweating all over someone else’s sofa.

Mmm mmm mmm mmm – Crash Test Dummies: I’m in London and my flat mate hates me. She is older than I and works as a Lawyer, although this is questionable as I rarely see her leave for work. She takes time off from work due to stress and proceeds to scrutinise my every move. She turns off the electricity at the mains so we cannot have the light on before 8pm. She shouts when I have my clothes hanging in the window to dry. I am desperately unhappy as I did not plan to be in London and miss Sydney so much it hurts. My boyfriend continues to watch me and follow me. Full of empty promises and lies. I can’t live with him and cannot live without him. He picks me up from the flat and I lie in the back of the car crying over the things that I cannot handle, while he continues to run errands. We continue to torture each other.

Life is too short – Scorpions: I am packing the last of my belongings and moving back to Wales. I lip sync to the music, putting emphasis on my dance moves around the bedsit. I ensure that the curtains are closed so poor unsuspecting neighbours do not get an eye full of my “I am a star” impersonation. I feel no regret and know full well that this is another chapter in my life that is fully closed. I have recovered from a toxic relationship and finally feel ready to embrace the world and whatever challenges that life may throw at me. I am ready to throw caution to the wind. I will no longer wait ‘For the time to stand still or all the worlds and stars from turning around’. Yes Scorpions, life it too short and sometimes you have to run for it before you have a chance to change your mind.


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