Introducing…. Laura E. James.

I am rubbish at maths. Our relationship broke down many years ago. It was a bitter parting and I was left with a nasty aftertaste of Pi.

I love stationery, I love books and I love singing; three lifetime affairs that have naturally evolved into one. In my very old, ‘don’t-sit-on-me-because-I-will-collapse’ ottoman, I have my own comics, all brightly coloured with felt tipped pens, exercise books with ‘How To’ instructions written when I was at secondary school, an entire book of poems, some dark and despairing, others light and humorous, song lyrics, and an unfinished science-fantasy novel about a dinoragon.

I love the smell of new books.

The following piece was written in honour of Valentine’s Day.

A Hot Proposal.

February 1996. Leap Year. Abu Dhabi.

As we stand on the promenade, our backdrop is the cobalt blue Arabian Gulf, virginal white sand and an oil rig. I am very fond of that chunk of metal. It is my witness.

It has taken my boyfriend an hour to persuade me to walk with him. My heart is willing, but my body is spent. Outside is hot. It’s searing. It’s the end of a busy sight-seeing day and we’ve been miles looking for a loaf of bread that isn’t made with the local sweet dough. In truth, all I want is to become one with the shower and then lie down on clean, cool linen, in an air conditioned room; but my man has something else on his mind.

The romantic heroine that I am, I yield to his gentle demands and walk with him, to the beautiful gardens that frame our view of the ocean.

We are standing in the park, enjoying the intense colours of the fig trees and palms; the grass is greener than we’ve ever seen at home, and the crisp white buildings behind, reflect the brilliant light that is unique to this part of the world.

My lover is dropping to his knees.

‘What are you doing?’ I say.

Then I realise. He is on one knee.

‘I’ve waited a long time to ask you this,’ he begins, taking my hands.

I know what the question is, but my mind goes blank. I’m waiting for the void to be filled.

‘Will you marry me?’

I smile. He has chosen a most romantic day. Monday, February the twelfth.

He understands I see things differently and sometimes need to work outside the bounds of convention, and he cares that I want to stand apart from thousands of Valentine’s Day proposals. Asking me today makes it our romance, and it is as unique as the Arabian sunlight now sealing our love.

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We wish you a romantic and perfect Valentine’s Day and would love to hear about your most romantic dates.

On Wednesday 15th, your host will be the lovely Sue Fortin.


22 thoughts on “Introducing…. Laura E. James.

  1. Just wondering if writers become writers because they don;t know what to do with all the gorgeous stationery they’ve bought over the years. Or is that just me ?

    • Hi Lizzie – I’m so with you on that. The bottom of my wardrobe is full of wonderful new notebooks – all different colours too. I will use them, but for now, I’m enjoying knowing they are there, and when the house is quiet, I’ll take them out and admire them.
      It is not strange.
      I know that now 😉
      Laura x

  2. I have tons of luscious stationery, dead expensive,top of the range. All pristine because I can’t bear to sully a single one of them.So I use Sainsbury’s basics notebooks instead!

  3. I’ve never had a romantic date. There’s something about me that inspires even the most gooey and romantic man to come over all pragmatic and cynical, sadly, I’m inclined to think any date that doesn’t end in vomiting or a strictly divided bill is positively gushing.

  4. I can’t remember any truly romantic dates, maybe I suffer from the same thing Jane does, whatever that is? I waited years for this one guy to ask me out and when he finally did, he took me to McDonalds … (To be fair though, I love McD, but still …:)

    • Hello Christina
      This could have been such a different story if only it had ended with “…he took me to McDonalds…IN NEW YORK!”
      When I was fifteen, my then boyfriend took me on a date to his home-made version of the London Dungeons. It was in the cellar of in his parents’ Thresher’s shop. It had rubber rats, a rack made from wine crates, and virtually no lighting.
      I was a little unnerved. Funny what age can do. Now I’d think what a great story line…
      Laura x

  5. Hi Laura – fab story – esp as I’ve just had a trip to Dubai and Abu Dhabi. It was short on romance, but still enjoying that ‘I was there’ feeling.
    Congrats on the new group and blog. As a former RNA New Writer, I’m with you in spirit!

    • Hi and many thanks for your good wishes.
      My parents worked in Bahrain, Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the 80’s and 90’s, so I made a few trips. There were two things that hit me as soon as I stepped off the plane; the heat and the light. Of course, it’s all changed now.
      I hope you enjoy that ‘I was there’ feeling for quite some time. 🙂

    • Thank you, Nicky. I know my DD has read it, but not sure Gajitman (DH) is aware his proposal has been publically outed…
      Have a great weekend and we’ll see you on Monday. Laura x

    • Hi Liz.
      Thank you for looking in and commenting. It’s been an exciting week all round. I love the cover for your book and I’m glad you’re pleased with it – well done 🙂
      Laura x

    • Hi Sarah – thank you. That was pretty much how Gajitman proposed. I really didn’t want to go out again that day; the heat had exhausted me 🙂
      I hadn’t considered singing on a blog…tell you what though, I could dig out some old lyrics and post them.
      Thank you for loooking in and catch you soon. Laura xx

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