At some point I was dating Paul from the computer room but I never introduced Laura to anyone I dated. That was a separate life. I had no intention of getting her involved or attached to anyone I was with because I had no plans to marry. So there was no point. Paul asked me about that, why didn't I tell him? Well because it was none of his business is why and unless we were serious, and I was not, then it would not concern him. He understood. I can't see letting a child get attached to "uncle" so and so and then him walking away.
I honestly cant remember anyone else at that time. He was probably the last English guy I went out with.
Chicksands. An RAF base turned over to the Yanks. Chicksands played a huge part in the Second World War by receiving signals which were later decoded at Bletchley Park, where the German Enigma code was broken.
My Dad did not like Americans, his wartime experiences and the reputation they had in England was enough to put him off. Once he met some that I brought home then he changed his mind. Especially when they called him Sir.
I said in my last post that my friend Chris was dating an American. He was from Chicksands and her cousin Pauline was also dating a guy from there, actually was engaged and married him, and they had introduced Chris to Randy. She was all happy about the "Club" and I got invited over, took Paul with me. He enjoyed it but could see that I was enthralled and after that as he said, he could not compete.
So it was that Friday and Saturday nights, sometimes Sunday and Wednesday we went to the club. We went about as often as we could. The Airman's Club had a dance floor a stage with a band and they had a floor show. The drinks were 25 cents. No hanky panky in the club, no sitting on laps, no kissing on the dance floor. We went by taxi and were escorted in, we were escorted out and up to where we got our taxi home. It was after all a communications base and supposedly top secret. I felt safe there . It was so much fun and well, what can I say, it was all young men. Mostly first time away from home. It was also during Vietnam. Randy (soon to be Chris's husband) had been in the Phillipines prior to coming to England. He went to Vietnam after they married, that had to be really hard for her.
We had to sign in at the gate and be escorted to the club, or have our boyfriend come get us.
Once we started going we got others to join us. There was Shirley, Diane, Denise, Lynn, Sylvia and Sally who were regulars along with Pauline and Chris. Every one of us married Americans. Every one of us are still married. There were a few more who came that we didn't hang out with as often but worked either with us or Sally. My memory is foggy there. At any rate if we went Wednesday night woe betide us Thursday morning at work. Diane sat behind me at work and I think we both had occasion to wake the other up. At least a couple of times we were out all night, I got home in time to get Laura up and ready for the day and change and get off to work. There were inevitable parties to go to in Bedford and around when people lived off base. It was great because we all knew each other.
The Elephant cage.
We didn't think too much about the war going on over in Vietnam we were too busy enjoying life. There were times though that we heard someone we knew had died, but not being American it was a far off thing. I dated one guy whose brother committed suicide, he came from California. I liked him. He wanted to go out with me but said right off he would never marry me, that was great because I had no such interest. He had to go home when that happened and once he had gone home that was it. One guy was a constant though. Joe..........I think I loved him in a way. Whenever I broke up with someone I was back with Joe. He asked me to marry him, he came from New York. (I didn't know he meant New York State) I said no. He was looking for a wife apparently because he married within six months. He had given me a month to think about it and I didn't see him until the night he wanted an answer. I just couldn't. Sigh!!! I think if he had sat down and talked to me away from the club it may have been different. I did love him.
Joe and Gerry, they were friends too.
Then there was Terry........he was from Pennsylvania I said no to him too and he took off for Pakistan. I liked him but, before we started dating he was with a woman who got pregnant by him. He didn't want to marry her because she was a little older than him and he felt she would be "past it" long before he was..........yeh like I would want him. Bye bye. I did go with him long enough for him to meet Laura at least once when we went to the zoo together.
Most guys never made it past six months with me, I always found some good reason to break up. I got bored easy. Also it didn't seem fair to them if they were indeed looking for marriage.
After that it was a long time before the "white" guys would come dance with me. I didn't care, I had Joe. I probably should have married Joe. I just was not ready for marriage.
We did like to drink. That really helped me get rid of my inhibitions, to not be so shy. I would not have been able to walk into the place without a drink, we usually had one before leaving home. I only got drunk a couple of times but sure managed to get very happy most times.
This time I had gone to visit Chris and to see her new baby, she was married now and living in Luton (I think) I had no intention of drinking at all. Randy and friends came home later and gave us a drink. Some how something had to have been put in my drink (not by Randy) and I blacked out. I remember sitting on the edge of the tub not feeling so good and falling in and giggling. After that I remember nothing until I got home.
Well next day I told Chris I had a very strange dream about the guy at her house trying to get me in bed...............she said it was not a dream, I guess he would have raped me had Randy not heard me yell and got him off me. She said their bed broke that night when they got in it haha......I have no idea what his name was now but he was in a helicopter crash in Vietnam and died.
Me and Gerry at Rick and Sally's wedding.
I got a taxi home and I remember giggling because I could not get the key in the door and was swaying all over the place and shushing myself. Didn't want to wake anyone up. Well I got in and promptly fell up the stairs, giggle giggle. Got in bed and went to turn off the lamp and knocked it over. I was hanging out the bed trying to retrieve it when Mum came in "Have you been drinking?" ......."Who me?. Noooooo not at all, nite nite" alls well that ends well. I didn't do that again. We enjoyed our drinks but were safe because of the taxi service that took us back and forth. Pete's Taxi. Never to be forgotten. I bet their drivers could tell some tales.
Rick and Sally's wedding
At some point Sally was dating Gerry and his friend Rick wanted her, so Gerry started dating me. Rick and Sally got married and me and Gerry got married. We are both still married.
Gerry home on vacation, when he went back we started seeing each other.
I don't know why I changed my mind. I think I reached the point that I was tired of getting to know new people and having no long term goals. There seemed no point in dating unless it was going somewhere, I was tired of starting over. So when he asked me, this time I was ready.
Chris and Denise were bridesmaids.
Joe is one of the guys there at my wedding.
We have been married since 1971.....do the math.