CHLOE AT 83 YEARS OLD
I met Chloe at a West Ham football dance. First, a pair of breasts came in the door, then two minutes later, in came Chloe!
She came in with a lovely blonde. I was always lumbered with the ugly bird! Though, true to say Chloe wasn't bad looking. When I divorced Chloe I tore up all the photos of her, so I have used the nearest replacement.
She took me home to meet her mother and granddad. He mother was "mad as a March hare". She had been put into mental hospitals. At one time she tunnelled her way out of one!
Her mother never married. The story was that," a seaman chased her around the table until he caught her and had his wicked ways with her". The seaman was from Nigeria. I met him often. He was a gentleman. I am proud to have known him.
Later Chloe was to be diagnosed as schizophrenic. So to be cruel, or objective, I married an mad, coloured, bastard. Remember! This was in the early fifties.
My father was hard pushed to accept my relationship with Chloe. He was a "left winger" and believed that we are all brothers and sisters. When I got Chloe pregnant he said, "Pay the thirty-bob a week and forget her!" He also said that if I tried to get on in life, being married to Chloe would be a big disadvantage. "You won't be able to go into any hotels with her." I must say that, even though I reached a senior position her colour never affected my progress. Her wickedness certainly did!
We had many problems in getting housing. Sometimes this was due to Chloe's colour. At one time, we were split up. She, together with our first born, Mischa, was put in a Church Army hostel and I went into digs. I managed to rent a flat and we were together again.
It was at that first flat that I had a preview of what our life was to be like. As in most marital rows, this started with a small incident. I paid too much for some lamb chops. The resultant row was, in no way, normal. I didn't realise it, but that was how our relationship was to be.
In the coming years, I was to have a knife held to my throat hundreds of times; eat food that she told me she had poisoned; sit in a room when she had turned on the gas, and go to bed with her holding scissors in my back. This was combined with anti-social behaviour in company and incessant screaming and shouting in the home.
After we had been married for six years, I had had enough. I left her and started divorce proceedings. It was difficult, in those days to get a divorce. I needed statements from my friends to confirm my statements. No one was willing to so do. So, I went back and made the best of things.
I was a bus conductor, but felt that I should be taking an education. I attended the local technical college one day a week for twelve hours and I also did two evening classes. I worked six days a week. Many times, I finished work at one or two in the morning and was back at six or seven for another shift so that I could go to the evening class.
Chloe did not like me educating myself. She said that when I got on, I would leave her for another woman. That's what made her angry when I divorced her. I divorced her because of what she was and what she had done; not to forsake her for another woman. I can remember one of her cries. "What have I got to look forward to? I'm going to have to work for the rest of my life!" It was a Godsend to her when she got another meal ticket in the form of Carl Jnr. Even the social workers said that she only had him because of the money.
On the lighter side; if I went to college from home; Chloe would stand in front of me and not let me out of the door. The boys said that all I had to do was to give her a cross buttock and I was out. But, I just gave up and didn't go.
She once, at a dance, stood outside the door of the toilets. So, Ron, a friend, and I climbed out of a window. Was she mad! Several times I was asked not to bring her into the company because of her behaviour. Another time she would not let me out so I said that I was going to mend a friend's tele. I went to Brighton for a weekend with the boys. That was just about the sum total of my naughtiness in the marriage.
We had four children. I'm a once a year man! And I can prove it. The first year we had Mischa on the 5th. October; the next year we had Lesley on the 3rd. October. I missed three years and then had Kevin and Carl on the 2nd. October. Chloe must have coughed!
I'll finish this page with a story that encapsulates the true Cloe.(and me?)
In 1972/73 I left Chloe several times and each time Mischa and Lesley came to see me and told me what a hell it was living with their mother. Each time I went back. I must have had some kind of subconscious knowledge that if I stayed, that I would do something dreadful.
After I returned the last time, and things just got worse; I called a "round table conference". It was my plan to force the children to ask me to leave. I said that they had to choose between their mother and me. It was not possible for us both to live there. I am a disciplinarian. I put the worst case for me to stay. Their mother spoke and said that she would abide by their decision. There was a long discussion and I was certain that they would choose me to go.
At the end of a lengthy discussion, I told them to go to a bedroom and talk about what we had said. I told them to take their time. I had a feeling of relief; for now, I could now leave without being pursued to come back.
They were not gone for more than one minute. They did not even go to a bedroom to talk. They came in and said that they preferred me to stay. I was very surprised.
I arranged to support Cloe. She went to live with her mother in England. The agreement was that when she got a job she would let me know and that, when she could, she would support herself. She got a job; she didn't tell me; I still maintained her! Cè la vie!
We were all very happy without Cloe. There was no screaming and shouting. Lesley managed the budget and saved £4/week. They had £2/week extra pocket money and £2/week went towards a holiday. They all had their duties each day.
Nine months elapsed. I am not a fornicator. I have never been unfaithful to either of my wives or any partner. I spoke to the children and said that I wanted to bring Chloe back. Kevin was furious. He said that if I brought her back he would never speak to me again. He doesn't speak to me now, but that is not the reason.
I brought her back; I was wrong.
(If you are looking for the emails - they are here)