Tuesday 23 January 2018

Confessions of a reluctant bohemian

Brendan O’Connor
Brendan O’Connor
Brendan O'Connor

Brendan O'Connor

My father has a saying on his wedding anniversary, as the many years he has been married to one woman accumulate: "What's the alternative?"

We laugh at it but there is a deeper point in there, isn't there? What's the alternative? If you don't want a long-term partnership to feel like a prison, you have to feel like it's a choice. And if it is a choice you make, then you probably have to ask yourself now and then what the alternative is.

I had an unexpected 'what's the alternative' moment recently when I was walking to work. I accidentally shared eye contact and then a smile with a woman. She looked, I thought, like a bohemian. She looked a bit epic. Tough, beautiful, strong, wilful, free-spirited, possibly contrary and difficult. She looked like a fantasy from a Woody Allen movie. And for a second, I thought to myself that that was the kind of girl I used to go for. And I wondered for a second if I would have a more exciting life if I had ended up with one of those girls. Maybe I would be travelling the world, living on a beach. Maybe I would be some form of artist or creative person.

Please sign in or register with Independent.ie for free access to Opinions.

Sign In

Promoted Links

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Don't Miss

Editor's Choice