This the 5th part of Sam & Erin’s Story – revised, tightened and restored to it’s original narrative/message format. Turns out I’ve changed little in this part – the return of Sam from Brussels and his imminent departure to the Arctic – and the pressure that brings…
Just a quick one, Erin. I stayed at a friend’s last night, but I’m now back home to a pile of junk mail through my letterbox, a misnomer if ever there was one. Made me think back to my youth, and a teenage girlfriend I’d met on holiday. Her letters I remember most – she was the first girl to show feelings for me through her written words. Decades on, another world, and written words connect us too – pull us close enough to touch, to feel something inside. Have a great birthday night out with your friends!
Your messages take me to another world. Each one shows me a bit more of you. I love it. If I tried to do the same mine would be rubbish next to yours. If that’s your quick one, I’m going to be a lucky girl. And yes, Sam – we will!
You stir so many things in me, we have to meet and soon. Let’s try to sort something out for next week.
I know we need to meet, and I want to, it’s not a case of having to, okay? What we have to do is get the timing right and I’m sorry, but next week is not right for me. I can’t help it, I have too much on. I’d no idea we’d get this close this quick when we started this.
The thing is, Erin, and I’d thought you might have realised this, I’m only in the UK next week then I’ll be away for a while and won’t be able to keep in touch. Look, I’ll be in London on Tuesday. Why don’t we meet up at lunchtime, even if only for a coffee? It would be good to see you before I go.
Excuse me, what kind of message is that? What am I supposed to have realised? You’re the one who needs to look, Sam. I’ve told you I can’t meet up with you next week. It feels to me as though you are trying to tell me what to do and I don’t like it. I think you’re being unfair pushing me like this.
I didn’t see much point in responding yesterday – we’d have only ended up saying things we’d regret and made things even more difficult than they are. My instincts don’t usually let me down, but you are virgin territory to me. What I felt was a little nudge you took as a hefty push. I can see I will need to handle you with the most gentle touch.
You’re good at this, aren’t you, making me feel bad for what I said then making me laugh? ‘Virgin territory’, you silly sod, but then you get me wondering how unique a man like you could be?
You don’t have to wonder, Erin, but you’ll have to wait to find out as you can’t make this week. I’ll be off again from next Monday for a couple of weeks, maybe longer – it’s hard to tell until I’m out there. What’s keeping you so busy that you don’t have time for a coffee? I’m not having a dig, I’d genuinely like to know.
You may not think you’re having a dig, but it feels like it to me. It’s obviously not helping with you going away again – it’s putting pressure on both of us. I appreciate you’re only asking for coffee and a chat to begin with. I think that’s a great idea, but please can we keep chatting on here and sort something out when you get back?
You’re probably right. I guess we could wait a few weeks to meet, but something has to happen. A phone call, or even an e-mail? Surely you can see that?
I know what you’re saying, but it’s different for a woman. I’m not comfortable giving out my personal information until we meet. I’ve had a bad experience meeting a man online and I’m now extra cautious. I hope you can understand my need to feel safe. It’s not you, it’s just the way I am.
I was in London yesterday and what with one thing and another I didn’t have time to message you, so don’t go thinking I didn’t understand what you said. I did and I’m okay with it. Time is getting very tight for me – I haven’t done a field trip like this one for a while, and the preliminaries are quite demanding. At least I passed the medical yesterday. How’s life for you?
Oh my goodness, you really are going away, aren’t you? I hadn’t taken it in to be honest. I don’t know what to say. I’m quite upset. You’ll think me silly, but I can’t bear the thought of not hearing from you. Please don’t leave me alone on here.
What can I say? This is how my life is. I thought you knew that from the start. I have no ties, no responsibilities to anyone, and I come and go as I’m asked. I can’t just stop, even if I wanted to. Look, I’ve been straight with you – where I’m going is far too remote to be able to log on to a site like this. I know I’m sounding blunt. I don’t mean to, but I do need you to realise we’ll need to move off of here if you want the chance of a relationship with me.
I can’t believe you sent me that. You sound so cold and detached, and again you are trying to impose your will on me. It seems I got you wrong and you are not the man I imagined you to be. Oh well.
Oh, Erin, why be like this? I want to have a way of keeping in touch with you, that’s all. Is that too much to ask? Cold and detached? You must be psychic, as I will be, but not in the way you think. I fly to Reykjavik on Sunday then on to Greenland. The weather is bad right now, but if we can the plan is to move on to the ice cap by Wednesday. The forecast is hostile to begin, then sheer beauty shining through. How about you?
My head is pounding, Sam. I can’t take all of this in. I am so unsure what to do, I can’t make sense of some of these feelings I have right now. I can’t stop thinking about you. I keep saying it, but I’ve never known a man like you. I didn’t even know men like you exist. I’m scared to ask, but will, why do you have to be out there?