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Simply Solo Spotlight: True Love and All That Crap

August 9, 2011

Today’s Simply Solo Spotlight is written by Eva, a longtime reader of Simply Solo. Eva first emailed me a gazillion years ago (okay last September when I was Freshly Pressed), to tell me that while she is kind of a prude about sharing her feelings in public, she wanted to tell me via email that she really enjoyed my blog. It was the kind of email that reminds you why you spend hours writing and managing a blog. Well, Eva got back in touch with me a few weeks ago, because she wanted to share her story with my readers. I love her tale, and I love her strength in sharing it with us. I hope you enjoy today’s guest post.

Quick shameless plug: Do you have a story to tell? Advice to offer? Did you just have literally the worst date of your life and you must write about it? I’d love to have you as the next Simply Solo Spotlight! Contact me at:

True Love and All That Crap

Somewhere along the road of my life, I developed a sharp disdain for romance, clichéd behavior and any emotional display. When I turned 20, I could only describe myself as fiercely independent, rational and “cold”. And frankly, I didn’t give a damn about anyone, or their feelings. Love was something I didn’t truly seek; maybe because I didn’t believe in it. I’d had a string of relationships (sometimes a few at the same time), and people came in and out of my life often. Each person taught me to control my emotions, each “involvement” made me a harder person, until I was virtually terrified of Love. Or maybe I was simply indifferent to it.

This story happens to be true. At the time, I would feel certain things and dismiss them as coincidences or premonitions. I now know there is no such thing as coincidence, and there is definitely such a thing as Fate.

I was traveling in South East Asia after five months of studying in Japan. My mom had joined me, because she was soul-searching and I’d convinced her that the Thai sun would help her out. We were staying on the island of Koh-PhaNgan, and were supposed to leave for Bangkok on the 12th of March, to catch a plane from there to Tokyo on the 15th in order for me to get back to my studies. On the 11th of March, my dad called my mom in a panic, telling us that there had been an earthquake and a subsequent tsunami in Japan. This automatically cancelled our flight to Tokyo, and we debated whether to stay on the island or return to the big city. At this point, I sensed something greater at work, and I was severely depressed. I didn’t care what we did; the fact that I wasn’t going back to Japan seemed like God had put up this enormous hurdle I’d never find a way around. We stayed in Koh-P, and on the 12th, my mom was the one pushing me, her daughter, to go and drink our troubles away at the Half-Moon Party. I was, to put it nicely, not in the mood, but conceded to my mother’s constant nagging.

Arriving at the party in the middle of the jungle, we hastily downed some vodka to catch up with the crowd and headed to the dance floor. After an hour or so, I didn’t have the heart to tell my mom that I still didn’t feel like partying, so I asked if we could get some neon tattoos. Where I would be now if we hadn’t gone to that particular tattoo stand, at that exact time, I don’t know.

As I was getting a dragon tattoo, two men joined the queue to get theirs. We got to talking; and I found out that their names were Paul and Alan and that they were from the UK. They stuck around, and we got some drinks together. I pulled them aside and told them point-blank that I really wanted my mom to have the best time (she had recently gotten out of a depression) and if they could keep an eye on her throughout the evening, I’d really appreciate it.

I think they took my words to be some sort of divine mission, because they didn’t let my mom out of their sight, buying us more drinks and dancing all night. It showed me what good guys they were, right from the start.

I started talking to Alan. We were both drunk, but our conversations were incredibly honest and straight-forward. At one point, he said, “I’m afraid of sunrises.”

“Why?” I asked incredulously.

“They’re always the end of something great, you know?”

I held his hand and talked to him until the sky had lit up completely – he didn’t even notice that the sun had come up. I told him that to me, sunrises meant the start of something new.

I kissed him out of the blue, because I felt something and wanted to make sure I wasn’t crazy. Now, Alan tells me that the first night we met, he thought I was a lesbian, and the kiss completely took him by surprise.

My mom, forever cool, invited them over for breakfast, and I drove Alan home on my scooter. We almost got killed, but all I can remember is a lot of giggling.

After breakfast, and a swim, I took him to my room, showered him and put him to bed. I think neither of us had the strength to turn our encounter into anything sexual; it would have ruined the perfect night. And to be honest, at that point, I was terrified and wanted him out of my life ASAP. (I told you, I had serious Love and Commitment issues.) After a brief goodbye, I left for Bangkok with only his full name.

couple in Cambridge

Eva and Alan in Cambridge

Five months later, here I am, completely converted and ready to be as committed as I possibly can be to this man. After Thailand, he went back to the UK, and I went back to my parents’ house in France. I then left for Israel for an an internship (I couldn’t go back to Japan), and I think the only way our relationship worked was because of the incredible love and devotion we felt/feel for each other. In fact, we’ve had maybe a total of four weeks together out of these five months.

I think my story says a few things:

1. I’m glad I waited for the right man to really open up; it’s worth it.

2. Sometimes you just have to believe in signs; a natural catastrophe and a LOT of little things put us on the right path to finding each other and falling in love.

3. Prince Charmings really do exist, they just all happen to be British and hidden away.

4. Long-distance relationships can work out if you love each other enough, and have a bit of Skype Sex.

couple in Israel

The happy couple in Israel

I wrote to Catherine almost a year ago, complimenting her blog. It’s pretty clear in that email that any emotional display was a no-no on my part; I admired Catherine for doing it so beautifully in her posts. I never thought I’d actually ever have anything to write about, but I guess meeting the person you know you want to spend the rest of your life with can change a lot of things.

Good luck, and may you find your lobster!

Copyright 2011. Simply Solo blog by Catherine Gryp. All Rights Reserved.

15 Comments leave one →
  1. August 9, 2011 8:43 am

    Haha– love this bit: “Prince Charmings really do exist, they just all happen to be British and hidden away.” Too funny! I’m glad you found yours, and thanks for sharing your happy-ending story 🙂

    • August 9, 2011 9:28 am

      I liked that part, too!

    • August 9, 2011 1:54 pm

      Hi Kat,
      Thank you; I guess I wanted to give readers a little bit of Faith.
      You should visit the UK sometime. You never know what you might find 😉

    • August 11, 2011 10:06 pm

      LOL, I immediately thought of you, Kat, when I read that line. 🙂

  2. August 9, 2011 9:28 am

    Awww…that’s a nice way to meet.

    • August 9, 2011 2:02 pm


      I’ve read your blog before! I recognized your name; you did the awesome 30 before 30 list, with that great post on the wolf reserve, didn’t you? I’ve always wanted to do that, I was kind of jealous 🙂
      Anyway, thank you!

      • August 9, 2011 2:26 pm

        Petting the wolves was by far the coolest thing I’ve ever done in my entire life. Definitely do it!

        I was just poking around your blog a bit. Love the title!

  3. August 9, 2011 11:24 am

    This is such a sweet post. Thank you for sharing. Best wishes to you and Alan!

    *And lobster is the same reference me and my best girl friend use. Love it.

    • Eva permalink
      August 11, 2011 11:55 am

      Hi KD,
      That’s a sweet comment, thank you. And the lobster reference is (as are all my references) from “Friends” 😉 Your friendship sound brilliant.
      All the best!

  4. August 10, 2011 7:08 am

    Aaaalllllllllll British? I can’t claim to be one, but I’m sure there must be a few scattered elsewhere, right?

    Enjoyed your post, Eva!

    • Eva permalink
      August 11, 2011 12:36 pm

      Hi Connor,
      Of course, there must be! I mean, Johnny Depp is American 🙂

  5. August 11, 2011 7:37 pm

    I agree with you about sunrises. I’d be more afraid of sunsets, if anything…although the night can bring a certain magic of its own, too.

    • August 13, 2011 9:40 am


      I think that’s exactly what he was getting at; the magic of the party, the half-moon, the neon lights and what not. I like that you commented on that specific bit; but now I’m curious: are you afraid of something silly, like sunsets?

  6. August 11, 2011 10:07 pm

    This is lovely. I’m glad you found such happiness. 🙂

    • August 16, 2011 11:41 am

      Hi Katie,
      Thank you so much. Really. I wish the same happiness on everyone.

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