This summer will be the first in which I am happy to show the world my bare legs, wearing either shorts or a skirt. I've done it before in specialised situations, such as wearing a swimsuit on a beach (once!) and from time to time I've worn a summer dress or skirt in Brighton. But my normal habit has been to wear cropped trousers, leggings or jeggings all year round, on the basis that my legs are simply not shapely enough, and apart from that, are blemished with blue veins and freckles.
But lately I have to agree that these same legs, while not of wolf-whistle quality, have acquired enough proper shape to get by. Moreover, the recent very fine weather has given them a slight tan, enough to take the edge off their terrible defects.
Very well, then: I can unleash them onto an innocent public, and they can put up or shut up. It's too warm to mess about. I need cooling breezes playing around my pins. So I've now made a few moths homeless, and my small selection of summer dresses are getting an unexpected airing.
I really need to buy a few more. There are sales bargains everywhere, but the stuff in the sales all seems to be the wrong size, or the wrong colour, or there's something strange about the styling. Which of course is why it hasn't yet sold. Given my new Strict Financial Regime (a) I don't want to spend much, and (b) I don't want to make any mistakes. Perhaps it's best to make do with what I've got, because this hot spell may the only real 'summer' we get, and it'll be over within days. Holding the Olympics in rain-lashed England (of all places) pretty well guarantees that.
As for the pretty face, well, friends have been making positive comments about my facial features. The word 'attractive' has been uttered more than once, and not with a chortle of mirth either, generally in a conversation about the prospects of pulling. (This type of conversation, whether whimsical or deadly serious, seems to crop up more and more among my Brighton Set)
I give a knee-jerk denial if a friend tells me that I'm attractive, unless I see that they really mean my lovely car Fiona. But hang on...I've got to admit that on waking up in the mornings I no longer look so rough, despite the ravages of extreme old age. I think the contours of my face really have been changing over the last few months, as if physically I've entered a New Phase. Certainly, all my contemporaries (meaning those who have been taking feminising hormones for about as long as I have) look prettier and more feminine to me. So I suppose they must be able to make the same observation when looking in my direction. Maybe.
Well, if it's not a delusion, then it's a very welcome development that should assist everyday passing even more.
At sixty, I don't need to look fabulous, but like any woman I'd be thrilled if my HRT did bring about a significant makeover. I'd hope for some subtlety: a realistic amount of sagging in the face, combined with a hint of dignity and refinement and wisdom; a brightness of eye, and a mobility of lip; the whole suggesting mellowness, maturity, good humour, and an appreciation of fun. A face that would offset the big tummy, and win allies.
Ha, I wish!