- Holly Searle
- London, United Kingdom
- Holly Searle is a writer who was born in Westminster in the middle of London. She shares her birthday with Jarvis Cocker and David Seaman and like Jarvis Cocker she wears glasses but has nothing whatsoever in common with David Seaman. She is fascinated by words, people and their stories, and regularly spends hours fantasising about being offered a weekly column. She has a degree in Film and Television which she gained from Brunel University in 1997. She has been blessed with two quite remarkable children whom she adores. She enjoys the company of her friends and the circus that is life. Long Walk to Forever by Kurt Vonnegut is her favourite short story. She is the author of the published children's tale The Story of Balan Singh, and is currently working on her first book.
Sunday, 27 October 2013
A Case for Colombo By Holly Searle
A good friend of mine recently told me a story. She wasn't very happy and asked me what I thought the truth was. I said that in my opinion I didn't know what the actual truth was, but that it all sounded a little bit fishy to me. That's what I thought she replied.
I said that given all of the facts, the one thing that none of us where able to do, was to read the minds of those who create these disruptive episodes in our lives.
Yes she said, I know all of that. But what do you think the truth was?
I said I really didn't know and it all sounded like a case that only Colombo could solve.
She laughed and said if only I had his number.
I said look, you don't, but I could write a piece about it and to coin a well-known phrase, ask the audience?
You won't use my name or anything will you she asked?
No, I assured her. I shall just write it as she had explained it to me, and see what others thought the truth was.
Okay she said. Do your worst, or best, and see what the feedback is.
Will do I said.
So here it is.
My friend recently encountered a chap. He asked for her number so that he could take her out for a drink.
She froze and for a moment thought is this a good idea as he produced a piece of paper and pen from his pocket.
Then she thought, it is just a mobile number, what harm can it do?
He explained that he was off for two weeks on holiday and would call her on his return. Yes, okay she said and thought nothing more about it.
She wasn't particularly interested in having a boyfriend, but it was nice, and the asking had made her feel good about herself.
Later, prior to going on his trip, he sends her a text message, this is followed up with a call from him before he leaves.
They chat about all sorts of things. Life, work, insecurities about dating. After the call ended, my friend thinks it was promising and could be something, could be nothing.
She didn't think about it again, until a week or so later when he sends her a text telling her that he had been away whilst away. It was a long story he said.
They exchanged numerous texts, none of which are smutty. My friend thinks that this is a good sign.
He tells her that he'll be back soon.
She thinks that it will be nice to see him when he is.
On the day he is due to return, she goes to work. When she arrives home her phone rings and it is him letting her know that he is home from his trip and did she want to go for a drink that night?
She says she will call him in a while and let him know.
She doesn't usually like to go out on a school night as she isn't at her best.
But she is intrigued and thinks yes why not. So she arranges to meet him for a drink.
He is charming. And appears to have as many arms as an octopus as he seems intent on touching her as much as possible as well as kissing her.
My friend thinks, this is all very well and good, but it is a little too much for a first date.
Still in-between all of the touching and kissing, he seems like a nice man.
He drives her home and waits while she gets to her door safely.
That my friend tells me is a big tick in her book.
They have made an arrangement to meet again in a few days time. But something very X-File seems to occur as he seem seems to be unable to answer his phone or reply to the odd text message. He eventually gets in touch and claims that he has developed man flu and has taken to his bed.
My friend says oh dear, sorry to hear that. Hope you feel better blah, blah, blah.
Then he starts to send her random texts messages late in the evening of the night that they were due to meet up, saying that he is feeling much better and feels like going for a drink.
My friend is shattered. She says What now?
No reply. A few hours pass, and he then replies that he had fallen asleep again.
Okay she thinks, starting to wonder what is going on. She told me at this point, she was torn between believing that he was actually poorly and the fact that he was hiding something else. Either way, she said that the seeds of doubt were sown.
However, the following day, the day of their second date, she sends him a text asking him if they are meeting up later?
He doesn't reply.
After she leaves work, he calls her and says that could they make it the following day instead? He says tell you what, let me know when you are home and I will call you.
She does. There is no response. A few hours pass and she calls him. There is no answer.
Later that night she decides his is up to something so she sends him a text saying I can't make it tomorrow night.
He replies straight away saying he is heartbroken but will survive. He says well you didn't call me? She says I did. He says I have no missed calls from you. She wonders what the hell is going on. She is holding her phone when a text arrives from him saying I am calling you but it is just dead.
Really she replies, but I am holding my phone.
Then he calls her.
They chat. She thinks he sounds logical. And because of this decides to give him one more chance......
They meet up on the following evening. She is shattered. They go for a drink. God you are beautiful he keeps telling her whilst holding her hand and gazing into her tired eyes.
Then he says will you come home with me?
She said at this point she felt like she did the first day he asked for her number. She said that she replied let me have a think about it.
So she thinks, I am an adult. I haven't shared an intimate moment with another human being for a while. He seems like the sort of man who might not be lying, but how do I judge this? What do I do?
She concludes that she'll take the opportunity and says yes.
They go back to his place. For a man of his age and pay range, it seems a little odd as he lives in what she says can only be described as a hall of residence.
He says that he share the entire building with one other man. His bit contains very little amounts of homely stuff.
They talk, and then after the deed has been done. Which she tells me was okay. He says that he'll drive her home. Which he does.
She says that when they arrive back at hers he asks her what she is doing over the weekend. She has plans for the following day, but she asks him, does he want to have dinner on Sunday. He says that he is meant to be meeting a friend who is leaving the country, but yes that sounds good.
Again he waits until she is safely indoors and then leaves. When he gets home he sends her a text. She smiles and thinks that she has made the right decision.
The following day. She wakes up and thinks oh dear did I really do that?
She sends him a texts saying good morning and hears nothing. She has plans so she carries on. Later that day, she calls him to say hello. There is no answer. She frowns and wonders why that is.
She has plans for the evening a gets on with those.
The following day, she hears nothing. She tells me that she was quite annoyed as it then appeared that he had just used her. She says that she wouldn't have minded if that was what it was all about. But she is cross, so she sends him a message saying that. There is no reply.
The following day she sends him a message via an app that she had helped him install on his phone. She can see that he has read it, but again there is no response from him.
The following day she is as mad as hell. She tells me, you know what really pissed me off was the fact that he didn't give me the choice. If it had just been about the sex thing, I am an adult and I could have based my decision on that. But the deception was unacceptable.
By late Tuesday afternoon she sees that he is trying to call her. She is at work and cannot answer. He leaves her a message saying that he has been to a funeral and is annoyed by her messages and asks her not to call him again.
Now she says, she wonders if this is lie?
Holly why would someone leave you on a Friday evening, and between then and the following Tuesday, after you had tried to contact them, not contact you and explain this had happened?
I say I have no idea.
She says that she felt a little guilty and tries to call him as she doesn't want any bad feeling, if that is in fact the truth.
But, she tells me, he won't answer his phone.
I say, maybe he was cross?
She says, yes but, if you had been to a funeral, and you thought that you may have inadvertently upset someone, wouldn't you try to explain that?
I say yes, well I would, but people are odd.
So she says, I still do not know what the truth is.
I say I think that you never will, and to me it sounds, based upon all of the evidence, that he probably has another life, and just wanted to get his leg over.
I say who knows, maybe he has many pieces of paper in his pocket with an assortment of pens ready for any opportunity to ask women for their phone numbers?
Yes she says maybe.
I tell her not to worry about is all and to just get on with her life as she did before.
She says I am, but wouldn't it be great if Colombo was real and I knew the truth.
Yes I say, it would. But truth is often stranger than fiction and no amounts of cigars or raincoats will ever change that.