you don’t know me but I can say I know you for several years. I’m 30, I read Gay Project practically for over five years. Gay Project kept me company in the darkest moments of my life, I never had the courage to write, even if I really needed it but I read your posts and tried to think that they were referring to me. Project, today I am writing this post to tell you that you made me understand many things, you made me “think” and I think that you’ve also defended me against myself and against the bad ideas that have passed through my mind. I would like you to publish my mail because I want to dedicate it to Michael, the guy who changed my life.
I met Michael a little less than three years ago, when moving from one job to another I ended up with a contract for three months with a waste disposal company. It’s not the best job in the world but it is a job and I certainly I could not afford to refuse. I introduced myself to the personnel chief, I compiled all the necessary documentation and then I was accompanied by an elderly worker in my area that was the recycling of computer equipment. In practice, I had to spend my time taking apart electronic and computer equipment, especially old computers. They explained more or less what I had to do and I could see how I could do it in practice, then I started to work. With an hour break for lunch I would have to work until 19. Since it was the first day of work in that company I tried to do my best.
In the afternoon, around 16 I hear the sound of a siren alarm and see people running towards a storage tower. A support structure has collapsed and a young worker had been hit by an avalanche of debris, they had pulled him off almost immediately, but he was not breathing. I did the first aid courses and because there were no doctors I did CPR and mouth-to-mouth, meanwhile they called the ambulance. Fortunately, the heart started to beat again within a little more than a minute, but the guy was bewildered, stammered and was in apparent confusion, after another ten minutes the ambulance arrived and the shift manager told me to go to the hospital with that guy. Me and Michael we met so.
In the ambulance the doctor had immobilized his neck and back and had made him take a little oxygen and Michael was less confused. We go to the emergency room together. They take him in without waiting for triage. Here comes the neurologist, makes him do an EKG and immediately sends him to do a CAT scan. I have to wait outside. The neurologist tries to calm me but I feel upset, after about twenty minutes Michael is back in the emergency room, the neurologist says that according to the CAT scan it does not seem that there are worrying things but Michael will remain under observation until the following day. Then they take him to a different emergency room and I stay with him.
He is not confused, speaks casually and says, ” If you had not been there I would have died.” I tell him what the doctors have told me but he is already quiet, doesn’t want his parents to be informed They live in a distant city at about 200 km from here, he says that his parents would badly worry. He requires me to send a message to his parents to reassure them: “Everything ok, I send you this evening message from the phone of a friend because I have forgotten mine at work. A hug. Michael.”
He tells me that he has arrived in town a few days ago and has found a room for him but it is too much expensive because it is a room for two. I tell him that I have arrived in the morning and I’m looking for a place to sleep and we decide to divide the expenses. At about 10:00 o’clock, the neurologist is back with us, he makes Michael do some maneuvers but Mitchel is much better and it shows. The neurologist confirms that they have found no injury or damage. He is to redo the EKG, the cardiologist says that there are no problems and that the fact that he has been helped right away with CPR and mouth-to-mouth was decisive. They discharge him with three days of prognosis. We go home by bus. I call the personnel department to communicate that Michael has been discharged from the hospital, they tell me that my duty has been shifted and I have to work from 14.00 to 20.00.
Michael does not live in a rented room but in a tiny apartment, only one room, kitchenette and a small bathroom. It’s a small house but it is really a house. It does not seem real to me to have found an accommodation like that. I am happy with the room, but the day was so full of events that I have not even stopped to think about Michael. In practice, I had found a job, that I hoped could be prorogated, I had found a house with a workmate and I was happy for that, I was not missing anything. I had in front of me six months of relative tranquility. I say hello to Michael and I go out to go to work, I leave my cell phone at home because it may be more useful to him than to me.
I arrive at the factory at 13.30 and they send me to the personnel manager who asks me how Michael is, obviously, he’s not so much concerned for Michael but because an accident can create problems for the company, when he hears that the prognosis is only three days he calms down, thanks me for doing CPR to Michael and shakes my hand, something he had not done the day before when I had presented to him as a new worker, and then sends me to my department.
I stand there thinking that in the evening I will see Michael, this is a thought that comes back to me often. I do not know anything about Michael, but I know that we will live together for six months and the fact of being with him and not with other people makes me happy. Shortly before 21:00 I’m back home.
Michael is standing, he rearranged the house, now it’s all clean. I notice immediately that the two beds that in the morning were pushed together as to form a double bed, even if only on one side there were the sheets, now were separated and in the middle there is the table. Michael had washed the floor and the bathroom was shiny. He had also prepared a little dinner: pasta with beans. When he sees me says hello but from a distance; we do not hug. I ask him how he felt during the day and he says, “Good!” He says he made a phone call on my cell phone to tell the hostess that I was there.
We sit at the table, the conversation is very embarrassed, I do not find other topics of conversation beyond asking him about his health. Then we begin to talk about previous work experiences and the conversation becomes easier. He has worked in a garden center, in a large supermarket and a in farm. The longest period (almost a year without a break) was in an agency of administrative services, but then the contract has expired and was not renewed and he returned to the garden center with contracts renewed for three months in three months, but with interruptions. Now with the waste disposal company he has a six-month contract. I tell him that I have worked in practice only in supermarkets, but only for short periods, but lately it became impossible to be hired and I was going in crisis because I was not working for nearly three months, then I got the proposal from the waste disposal company and I came here leaving my parents, who live in another region. On the other hand Michael also had to do the same.
Michael is a year younger than me, I had noticed it when we compiled the documents in the hospital, even less than a year. After high school (he’s foreign correspondent) has been trying to find work to help the family economically. His father is 66 years old and is a disabled person in a wheelchair after an accident at work, his mother is 58 and tries to work as it’s possible to get to the end of the month. His father after the accident was in depression for a long time but then luckily he came out. His mother does what she can. Michael is an only child and he also does what he can for his family.
I almost feel lucky because my parents are still in good health and are much younger than Michael’s ones. My problems are basically only work problems but my parents would be able to go on even without my help.
I tell Michael that I too am an only child and I talk a bit of my parents. He listens intently, and lets me speak without interrupting. Then we talk about work and he tells me what he knows about the work we have just started. Then he stands up, washes the dishes and puts them back in the cupboard and tells me I’d better go to bed, because tomorrow my shift start at seven in the morning. I go to bed, he comes after five minutes. We only say goodnight.
I keep thinking about all that has happened and about Michael who is sleeping (if he is sleeping) on the other side of the table. I try to remember every moment of our conversation. We talked about work, parents, and incidentally many other things but we did not talk about girls. It is normal for a 26 year old guy (Michael) and another 27 to speak freely without saying a single word about girls? The answer seemed obvious.
The next morning we get up very early. I take a very quick shower, he makes coffee and then goes into the bathroom and I put in the bag the things to take to work. We go running to catch the tram, it’s cold, he has a scarf, and I’m dressed in light clothing. He takes off his scarf and hands it to me, I tell him to keep it, but he insists and puts his scarf around my neck. The scarf is still warm and the feeling is wonderful! It is the warmth of Michael!
At the lunch break he proposes to ask the foremen (his and mine) to set identical shifts for us, since we live in the same house. He asks me if I agree. I say, “Of course!” and I smile and he replies with a smile. I finish at 15.15 and I remain waiting for him but he delays until 15.45, when he arrives he says that he had gone to talk to the personnel department and then with our foremen and they had fixed shifts for the first three days of the week from 7.00 until 16.00 with lunch break (one hour) and for the other three days from 13.00 to 21.00 without dinner break. I say that for me it’s just fine. This way we can go and get back together. He tells me that the next day I have to go to the personnel department to confirm that that’s fine for me. Of course in case of necessity they may change shifts.
We work in different departments and unfortunately our canteen shifts are different, but we cannot change these things. Of course I would love to spend my time with Michael but you may not realize all desires.
In the following days I begin to learn more about Michael, he is very reserved, as I can see he does not receive phone calls, and calls on the phone only his parents, just like me. I’m very impressed by the intelligence of Michael, he is a guy who has a thousand interests and is able to talk about everything and not only in general. When we have morning shifts, in the evening we stay together watching television and he always looks for scientific or historical programs and even about television programs we completely agree. Browsing through the channels he ended up in a program where they were also talking about gays, I felt a moment of embarrassment, he casually changed the channel, as if he had not noticed the topic of the conversation, but I perceived a moment of hesitation, and this restarted my brain.
Michael is a nice guy, maybe even better than me, or perhaps without “maybe”. He is tall, has straight hair mahogany color, light eyes very beautiful when he smiles. Michael’s smile is beautiful.
As the days passed things have not changed substantially, we never talked about girls or sex but just about work and possible references to gay topics were totally put aside. With him I was fine, I felt at ease and although I had some doubts, however, I put aside the idea that we could start a love story.
Two months have passed, all in all I was happy, I was hoping that my contract would be renewed but it didn’t happen and, upon expiry of the six months, I was fired while Michael is left in the company. For me it was a terrible moment. I had no money not even to pay my share of the rent, I had to look for work somewhere else but I had lost my time hoping that my contract would be renewed and in any case I was going to meet a period of unemployment, and perhaps even a long period of unemployment. I was depressed, very disappointed, I knew I had to return to my parents’ house to wait for a new job and then I would miss Michael and really this put me in a crisis.
Michael here has been really my lifeline. He said: “No! You don’t go anywhere! You stay here and we’ll find a job!” I told him that I couldn’t, however, pay the rent or anything else and he said, “You cannot go away for any reason, it would be a disaster both for you and me. Now we have understood that we are friends and that we have to help each other. You must stay here!” I cannot deny that this was the speech that I wanted to hear. I said: “Ok! You really are a true friend!” And he smiled at me.
While he was at work I went to the supermarket to find all the products on offer to save money, I came home and cooked but mostly I was frantically looking for a job, writing curricula and sending them to the companies but the few responses I received were all more or less the same: “At the moment the staff is fully booked, but in case of availability we will inform you.” Always the same music. One morning I found an e-mail on the mobile phone from a company that I had never heard of, I opened it and it was a call for a job interview for the following Monday, and the company was also in the city, across the city, but in the city. The e-mail referred to my e-mail sent 15 days before, but I had not sent any e-mail to that company.
When Michael came home I told him about the email I had received and I said I hadn’t sent any email to that company and he said: “You’re wrong! You sent it!” and smiled while saying so. I understood that he had sent it for me! In practice he used almost the entire lunch break to send my curricula to all the companies in the area. He told me that that company was looking for intermediate level computer programmers and he thought it was the perfect thing for me, because I am computer expert. We go on the company website, I begin to understand more or less what it is. In practice, the interview will be about the use of visual editors, html, php and css.
At home we were able to use Internet without subscription because downstairs there is a technical study of a surveyor, his internet line is open 24 hours a day, every day, and we connect to his line. He told us that for him it’s okay. Well, I sit at the computer and begin to study thoroughly the topics of the interview. The more I try to deepen the more I realize that it is a bottomless pit, I feel discouraged and I think I’ll never be able to overcome the interview. When Michael is at home he does everything and tries to put me in the best condition to study. I pledge myself to the maximum of my ability. The day of the interview I have to go alone because Michael is on duty in the company.
I introduce myself, dressed in a not too demanding way, but perfectly shaven and with short hair. There are only four guys, I almost feel uncomfortable seeing others with laptops and super-phones. The interview takes a lot, I am the last one, shortly before 14:00 it’s my turn. The examiner gives me three sheets, makes me read the questions and explain what to do to solve that problems. I answer immediately the first two questions, which were almost trivial, and the examiner seems satisfied. The third question is much more difficult. I have an idea on how I could solve it but it’s very hard to write the required program lines on the spot, I should have clear in mind the syntax of commands that are used rather infrequently. I tell the examiner what I have in mind, he tells that the road is passable and that he will give me an hour, with the possibility to consult the manuals, to see what I can do. I tell him it’s okay, I sit down at the computer and he opens Notepad, which fortunately I know well. He tells me that when I finished I can knock on the door of the next room. I start to work and try not to panic. It takes half an hour to write program lines needed, I read that lines many times, then print the page and go knock on the door of the examiner and give him the paper. He looks at the program and tells me that I’m enough competent in that things and I will get a contract for six months. I feel happy. The examiner tells me that in “his” company (he was just the CEO) if I want to work I will have a chance to grow. For the first two weeks I had to take an intensive course in business. I should start on the following Monday. Then he shakes my hand and says to me: “You’re a smart person, You are in our team now!” Then he sends me to administration to set documents.
When I go out now are 17.00 and Michael is out there waiting for me! This time I hug him and tell him: “I habe been hired! I have a contract for six months!” Then I tell him point by point how things went. Unexpectedly he ruffles my hair and hugs me. We go home, I feel like another person.
It was then that we said that we loved each other. We have not even mentioned the word “gay” because it was not necessary. It’s really wonderful to have nearby a guy who loves you and who shares life with you. In the end I think that saying “I love you” is much more than saying “I’m gay.” Since then and until my first day of work I went every day to accompany Michael to work and was waiting for him outside the company at the end of his shift. Seeing him coming towards me smiling was just like seeing heaven.
My first day of work I went dressed as the day of the interview. I did not know what the course I had to attend was about. I met four guys who were required to attend the course with me, they were all graduate engineers and we were told that we would work together for two weeks, then we have been sent to the CEO that I had done the interview, he gave us books and we have been sent to five different rooms. We had to read the first brochure of the course and put in writing proposals for the development of the project considering the final goals.
We had to work for eight hours. I tried to do my best not to lose a second and I wrote more or less ten pages about how to develop the project, then I rewrote the entire text of my proposals trying to make it easily understandable using also examples, I sent my work a few minutes before the lapse of eight hours and I printed a copy for me. When I came out of my room I saw that the others had already gone, it was 17.00. I went out and Michael was there. I told him what had happened, then when we came back home, I reminded that, in order to improve the project I had worked on, I could try another way. I worked all night and sent by e-mail my new proposal around two in the morning.
The next day at 8:00 I was back in company with the four other guys who were speaking in continuation of each of the solutions that they had proposed, solutions that seemed excessive to me, like using a 10-ton press to crush a walnut. New sheet with a new problem to solve. I start working, but just before noon the CEO comes in and says, “Come with me.” I tell him that I have not yet finished processing the question, he says: “Forget it and come with me.” He makes me get into his office and tells me that he has read my proposal yesterday which was not bad but then he has read also the email I had sent him in the night and that the solution I proposed seemed to him extremely intelligent and he also liked the fact that I had continued to work on the project at home. He told me that I would work with him. In practice the next day I had my own room communicating with the one of the CEO. After six months I was hired on a middle management level with a permanent contract, something that I never would have imagined. I worked from morning to night for the company and often at night.
Then Michael was dismissed from the waste treatment company, he had hoped so much that they would renew the contract and this time we had sent dozens of curricula, but unfortunately we did not find anything and it was here that without telling him anything I decided to play my all out.
I went to the CEO and told him that I needed a huge favor, he asked me what it was and I told him that it was about hiring a very serious person who could give a lot to the company. He was very puzzled, the request bothered him and he pointed it out. I insisted, saying that he could hire that person for administrative tasks because that person is fluent in English and French and about honesty and trustworthiness of that person I would bet my head.
He began a speech to make me understand that it was impossible and I told him bluntly: “If you do not hire this person I resign right now. I think it would be really a great thing to hire that person both for me and also for you! And certainly you will never regret it!” He looked even more puzzled and asked me: “The person is your girlfriend?” Saying so he already seemed less rigid in his positions but I immediately replied: “No! It’s my boyfriend!” He made a face and said: “Are you kidding me?” I said “I would never do that!” After a little tug of war, he told me:” Ok … but it must remain your own business … “.
He told me to send curricula tomorrow and that he would have called Michael for an interview to see where to collocate him but it would be for three months only. I told him: “You can rest assured that we will do everything to return this favor!” Michael went to the interview, which was not at all a formality, then was hired. I thought that the CEO would send Michael in administration and instead I saw that he was placed in a room opposite to mine. I did not expect such a thing and I went to thank the CEO. He said: “I did my part, now it’s up to you to do yours!” and made me a sign to go.
After three months Michael was hired with a permanent contract, now we knew each other for many months and had built a more than decent economic position. We worked hard even far beyond our contractual obligations and the CEO began to trust us and sometimes even sent us to represent the company abroad in very important meetings and we always were sent together. So we were satisfied professionally.
Between us everything was going as before: a deep loving each other but without sex and for this I could not find a reason, I felt very braked, I saw that even if treating me very affectionately he scrupulously avoided any behavior with overt sexual implications. At the end we talked about it and he told me that he had been abused as a child and up to almost 12 by an uncle. About these facts he had never told anyone. Then his uncle became ill and Michael wanted him to die, his uncle had died a few months later and Michael had been shocked thinking that he had wished for the death of his uncle and was no longer able to think about sex without feeling guilt for having wished for the death of his uncle.
After understanding what actually Michael had in mind I refrained from insisting. I was in love with Michael with or without sex and nothing would be changed. He used to lean on me every now and then while we were watching TV, he hugged me and ruffled my hair but he had totally removed sex.
After another year, when they were two and a half years since we met, things have changed. We were in London to represent our company. After an exhausting day spent in economic negotiations to follow, we begin to write a report to be sent to the CEO, and we work until three in the morning. The departure was scheduled for the next day and the plane was already booked. He looks at me right in the eyes and says, “Give me a hug!” I hug him tightly and he returns the hug and I experience the full force of this guy and all his sweetness. For both of us it was the first time and it was a beautiful thing. Eventually we fell asleep in each other’s arms. Since that night six months have passed. We live in the same little apartment but we dream to have one of our own with a small garden in front. But in fact, even without a new home, we don’t miss anything. I owe my happiness to Michael!
This is our story, Project! Gay love is a beautiful thing!
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