Now, I know it appears that summer has been and gone, but I shall relate to you a little cautionary tale in case it decides to return.
A couple of weeks ago, when it became clear that the weather wasn’t a tromp l’oeil and it might indeed stay warm for an entire day, I decided to wear some Spring clothes. Unfortunately most of the clothes I own are still in storage from my 7 months ‘sabbatical’ last year so I was left with a sweet little dress which I picked up in Mexico. As my flatmate will confirm, I am definitely not a morning person so even though I did look in the mirror before I left the house that morning, I cannot guarantee that my eyes were fully open.
Unsurprisingly, by lunchtime that day, when I had seen my reflection a couple of times, I started to have the intense realisation that not only was my dress definitely not appropriate office attire, but that things were bulging and hanging out in the most unacceptable places. Thankfully, my office is close to Shepherd’s Bush Market so despite the heat I threw on my overcoat and 10 minutes later found myself naked behind a rail of velour leisure suits and half a shower curtain, pouring excess inches into an array of support underwear which would have given Buddha a waist line to be proud of. You can imagine how much effort this exerted and soon I was feeling positively peckish so I paid up and, feeling confident that all the lumps and bumps were straightened out, headed to my favourite falafel shop.
It was only when I returned to the office that I realised the support pants I had purchased were rather long on the leg and it looked like I was wearing lycra cycling shorts underneath my very pretty, if slightly indecent dress. I spent an entire meeting with my boss trying to push the pants up/pull the dress down and of course came out of it not having a clue what had just been discussed. Normally I would have just worn my coat for the rest of the day and jumped on the bus home immediately after work but that evening I was going to the theatre. Dahling. Luckily it was only in Hammersmith so on the way there I dived into Primark, grabbed another, shorter, pair of support pants and put them on in the Lyric Hammersmith’s fancy new toilets. Finally, feeling
positively fabulous I waited at the bar for my friend with a glass of wine. Trying to ignore the fact that I was suddenly having trouble breathing I chatted to my friend as we took our seats. Just minutes before curtain up my breathing became so laboured that I rushed to the toilets yet again to peel off the new support pants – which I then discovered were a (UK) size 6 to 8… I’m sorry, which woman who is a size 6 to 8 EVER needs to wear support pants?! As I sneaked back into the pitch black auditorium, with everything hanging out, I sighed and settled down with my wine resting on the handy shelf which is my belly.
After such an epic day of several underwear changes it occurred to me that in actual fact I wasn’t any thinner when I was in Mexico, I wasn’t any more toned, in truth nothing was different about my body except I was a little bit more tanned. So why was I more than happy to wear this dress almost every day for two months in Mexico and think I looked gorgeous but in London I’d prefer to waste a whole day and a whole lot of energy chasing after the perfect support pants? Come to think of it – and I’m horrified I haven’t yet mentioned these words in this post but ‘when I was in New York’ I never once even thought about support pants and I lived on a diet of pizza and beer. So, pizza and beer in New York, tacos and tequila in Mexico (yes, I am that clichéd)…why then am I wasting my time trying to eat salads, and the odd falafel wrap, here in London when there appears to be no direct correlation between what I eat, how I look and how I think I look?
In celebration of this most simple yet liberating of realisations, I headed home to eat pizza and drink beer. But I did put the little Mexican dress back in the cupboard to give my mind a chance to catch up with my body…or the other way around.
Oh and in case you’re wondering I have done bugger all this week about moving to New York…I have been too busy eating pizza and tacos and cake.