So what happened when everyone came back from summer vacation?
I was in Italy at the end of August and thenfor three weeks in September. It was really hard for me those three weeks because I was only a few months pregnant and runnig around like a chicken with my head cut off doing way too many things but mostly taking care of sending all my paintings to Gables. Finally I get back to Paris and back into the studio.
Everyone was so happy to see me, the virgin studio mate Louis and his lover that I will call XX. Everyone tells me their stories and I listen but it goes in one ear and out the other. It seemed like the world shifted in those three weeks that I was gone. Louis and XX were beyond the fisrt stages of the wild passion and the knots were starting to surface. She was even making fun of him, commenting that all men are this way and that way right in front of him. He seemed oblivious to this but had become terribly possesive to the point of not even wanting to let her go to her studio and paint. He even started throwing things and having tantrums. (I didn't know that then but find out only after he has moved in with me)
The virgin started suspecting that there was an indecent relationship going on and started saying things to me like "have you seen XX today?" then after a few minutes "is Louis here." The relationship was indecent to her because both of them lived with someone else. Louis starts to be mean to the virgin because he feels like she is threatening
One day the virgin decides to telephone the house of XX because she wants to know where XX is. The boyfriend answers and says that XX is at the studio. After about 30 minutes XX comes in all smiles and comes to talk to the virgin. I can't understand their language but from the silences and tone of voice and body language realize what is going on. XX gets furious and about that time Louis shows up. The boyfriend knows. Its a big mess. XX has to finish her work to go have a huge show in her country and in a few days is gone and stays away for 20 days. While she is gone she calls me to say hello to every one.
When she comes back things are different, she doesn't want to continue, she feels guilty and thinks that she has made a mistake. (considering his shitty character I don't blame her, but he can be so charming and has fooled me too) She decides to stay with her boyfriend and try to make things work so. SHe had even told him that she was in love with another man and was ready to move out. Louis never mentioned to his girlfriend that he was in love with another woman.
They agree that it will not work but the attraction is strong and it is a confusing period. I try to stay out of it all considering the ateliers a work environment. Louis has a key to my atelier and comes to paint on my side often. He loves the view, says that it is better than on his side, the light is better. He hates his studio mate and finds tranquility in my space. He says the music I listen to is cool. He wants to talk to me about XX, I don't.
On Dec 24th the virgin calls me to say that she has decided to leave on Dec 31st. What a Christmas present! My first thought of a new studio mate is Louis. I call him and say that the virgin is leaving. She needs to get away from XX because they now have fallen out. I ask Louis if he is interested and say that I will give him two weeks to think about it. He immediatly comes into my space to "try it out." Things with XX have completely broken by then. He is charming, loves the light, the view, etc., and finally decides to move in with me the day that he looks up above his door and sees the light on in XX's studio. That was the turning point.
He says now that he did not realize that he can hear everything she does now that he is in my space. He can hear the music she listens to, when she is on the phone, when she moves her chair, when she has visits, it it is a man or a woman. By mid February it is horrible for him. He has started to harrass (I find this out from her) her and is then that he thinks he has made a mistake. He regrets moving.
He finally lets down the facade and I see the Dr. Jeckel and Mr. Hyde personality. I tell him that the curtains are not cool. His turpentine and smoking bother me but I open the window and tolerate it. I don't listen to music to be polite. I use spot lights instead of the overhead neon. (I now what colors I am using and don't need daylight to find the exact blend) He comes to tell me what I should do with my painting while he produces nothing incapable of feeling comfortable, he cannot find himself in my space- we have divided it with wooden panels. He comes to the atelier and sees only the things that need to be done to make it a better space - put up curtains, shelves useless things. He has probably sold less than 20 paintings in his life, stocking all of his stuff. Me I'v been living off my art for about 20 years and the 140 paintings I made last year are all sold. It starts to bother me that he is just too aware of what I am doing. I start to feel him on my back.
Ten days ago he freaks out on me, and thus I am writing this story to emancipate my spirit. He was totally hysterical, i would have been in tears if i were him. He regrets moving to my place because he now realizes the light on the other side is better, he put his heart into fixing up the other space. He misses his ex studio mate that he despised and wants to phone him but worst of all is that he hears XX and is obsessed by her. He says that he thinks that it is not going to work out with us sharing and wants to isolate himself from the world, he thinks that he will leave the ateliers all together. He throws away his paintings.
That is when I say take a vacation but I am vexed that he is there and lose some sleep over it. He goes away for a few days and when he comes back I say that i have gone to see XX and she is a friend. He looks at me and says "A friend!? your friend" Now i can't even see who i want. He says that he has begun seeing a phsychologist or a phsychiatrist and has begun taking antidepression medicine. This did not make it easier for me on Thurday to tell him to leave but I did and feel much better. I don't need this, especially right now. I wonder what is going to happen. He has to go. I hope he will go soon.