The house sold quickly which was a shame as Jimmy was getting used to living there on his own with the boys and it hurt him badly when they moved in with their mum. He rented a flat near to their old house and the boys still came to him after school, Sammie picked them up when she finished work, and they stayed with him every other weekend. She had moved in with her new manager, a whirlwind romance or was he the person she was “just talking too”, whatever it seemed that maybe it was in her genes to shag the boss.
Her new love interest or Fat Fuck as Jimmy liked to call him was obviously exerting an influence over Sammie as she now decided she couldn’t wait two years and wanted a divorce straight away. Also, where they had agreed on a monthly amount he would pay her towards the upkeep of the boys this was no longer enough. She had been in touch with the Child Support Agency and they were assessing his income. He was finding it hard enough to make ends meet as it was so took on a taxi driving job. He worked weekend nights every other week when the boys were with their mum and any night in the week when he was needed. This work was all cash in hand so wouldn’t affect his CSA payment, as long as he could keep it hidden, he earned forty percent of the nights takings and any tips were his. This helped to keep his head above the water but made him even more tired!
Jimmy fell into a routine of working, sleeping and spending time with the boys. He had no time for anything else and even if he did he couldn’t afford to do it. Living on his own was great, he could do what he wanted, eat what he wanted, watch what he wanted, wear what he wanted and all whenever he wanted! But was he happy?
He thought about this a lot as he pounded the streets on his delivery and he wasn’t really sure. He didn’t miss Sammie he was certain of that, but he did miss someone to talk to. He missed having someone to moan at and dissect the day, he had the boys, but that wasn’t the same as adult conversation. The house was quiet and empty when the boys weren’t there; he had taken to putting the television or radio on as company. He came to the conclusion that maybe he wasn’t unhappy but would be happier if he wasn’t as lonely.
What could he do about that, meet someone? That made him laugh, even if he had any time to meet someone how was he going to do it. Hang around in bars or nightclubs then chat to complete strangers? That was never going to happen! People made him uncomfortable; men were bad enough but women, Christ, they weren’t even from the same species!
He’d had three experiences in the past with women, the first with a girl when he was in his teens, it hadn’t ended quite as he would have liked. She was very pretty with all the curves in the right places and egged on by his friends asked her out. He was pleased but very surprised when she said yes. They went for a walk in the country and ended up in a secluded spot. They kissed for a while then he put his hand up her jumper an under her bra. She stopped kissing him and asked him “if he only wanted to go out with her to feel her tits?” He went bright red and told her “of course not” when he really meant “of course”. He never saw her again as he was so embarrassed by the whole affair and it made him realise how immature he was and how he knew nothing about how to behave with girls.
Jimmy didn’t manage to 'lose' his virginity until he was in his early twenties and this was his second encounter with a woman, another he would rather forget. He met her at a works party, a friend of a friend, and had taken her home after. They ended up having sex in the car with the seats down in the middle of a council estate car park. Two things stuck in his mind after that night, laying on his back in the car straddled by this “lady” who was pulling on her nipples, pouting and asking him “have you cum yet?” and she wore pink plastic frying pan earrings with a fried egg in the middle. Jimmy never remembered her name but found one of the earrings a couple of days later and kept it for prosperity.
The third was with Sammie, now he was past forty and was hardly a ladies man! Shit, he wasn’t even sure if he would remember how to kiss a lady. Kissing Sammie had become an uncomfortable fumble and they had just stopped doing it, he was sure anyway as soon as he had turned his back she would try and rub it off like a little kid getting a sloppy wet kiss from an annoying aunt!
How he was going to meet someone new if he never went anywhere apart from work and shopping. Work was definitely not an option! There were only a handful of women who worked in his office and they fell into two distinct groups. The first group were women who were married or attached to other postmen and they were definitely out of bounds. The second group were women who either looked like or acted like men and they held no appeal to Jimmy at all. There was actually another sub group, which contained a woman who only liked other women and she obviously wasn’t an option. Another good reason for not dating someone at work was he knew how the women were treated, talked to and, were talked about. He didn’t think that was acceptable at all and wasn’t sure he cope with it.
So that left shopping. All he had to do was buy lots of single portion cuisine and walk around the supermarket next to single looking women casually tossing the packets into the shopping trolley. If he could do it with an air of, “look at me ladies I’m single come and get me” all the better. And even if he couldn’t pull wandering around the shop at least he could try the same thing with the checkout operator. He was sure he had read they had special nights for this but had never seen any signs up anywhere. This, he realised was never going to work for him though when he had a vision of some lovely looking lady peering into his trolley of meals for one and saying “you’re single aren’t you?” and him replying coyly “yes, how did you know?” and her saying “because you’re fucking ugly!”
There was something else that he really must address before he set out his stall at the singles market and that was he was in reality single! He hadn’t told anyone he had separated from his wife, he hadn’t told anyone because he was embarrassed. When his sister’s marriage had fizzled out within a year he had scoffed, not to her, but to Sammie. When other people he knew had separated and moved on, he had used his marriage as a model for the ideal. When he had gone into Burger King or McDonalds on a Saturday afternoon and seen all the tables full of single dads getting their “quality time” but with no idea how to spend it, he felt sorry for them. Now he had joined their ranks and it made him very uncomfortable.
Jimmy didn’t really have any friends, not that he had many before he was married, but any he did have then he hadn’t kept in contact with. He had a bit of banter with some of the blokes at work, but that was work, he had never been out with any of them socially. Not for the want of them trying, why the hell would he want to go out at night with people he saw at work all day? Anyway most of them were annoying and childish so he always declined and they stopped asking him!
There was one guy there he was quite close to, Clive. Clive was a similar age to Jimmy and they were both single after failed marriages, in fact if Jimmy thought about it they had quite a bit in common. He baulked at the thought, him and Clive were not similar! Clive was crass, loud, smelly, unreliable and took drugs for fucks sake! They were complete opposites, black and white, chalk and cheese, but, they got on! Maybe that was why they got on, opposites attract and all that?
Jimmy needed someone to talk to, he wasn’t really sure Clive was that someone but The Samaritans had started blocking his calls and he needed some advice, so he asked Clive out for a beer. Not that he thought going out for a beer with Clive was a good idea but it was better than the nosey bastards at work prying into his business.
Clive was very surprised when Jimmy asked him “If he wanted to go out for a beer some time?”
They arranged to go out that night as Clive couldn’t stand the suspense and Jimmy wasn’t going to talk about it while he was at work.
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