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Many years ago after a very ‘nasty’ breakup and subsequent divorce (and with no children to complicate things) a good friend of mine moved far away from Victoria to ‘recover her sanity’ as she put it.

The minute I saw this ‘photo’ online last week I thought of her.

We lost touch with each other and by chance I met up with her a couple of years ago and couldn’t believe it was the same person.  Seems that after leaving Victoria and doing a bit of travelling round NSW she found herself living in Queensland.  She settled down, found a job and returned to (as she put it) a normal lifestyle – 30 years ago when she moved away all she wanted at that time was just peace and quiet, so having found employment and eventually buying another property her life was great except after a while (as she put it) she missed male company.  Not for ‘you know what’ (her words) but just for being round a man??  By that time she was a youngish 45yr old.

For a long time friends kept trying the match maker game with her but she resisted all their efforts.  Then she met someone (bowled me over, she said, literally in the street lol) He wined her and dined her, took her out and about and it would appear she really was smitten.

Gated communities were coming into their own up there and seemingly he lived in one – even though according to her, she never did go to his home.  Seems he had a small very spartan unit in town that he kept for when he was working local which they would use now and again but more often than not he would come and spend the night at her house.

So this ‘casual’ affair went on for about 10 years, the hard luck stories had begun, starting with ‘left my wallet at home, could you pay for dinner tonight’ until it was her paying for them to go on trips together because all his cash was tied up in various ventures he had going at the time.

Oh yes you are on the right track if you are raising your eyebrows – he made suggestions about selling her place and moving in together somewhere else (but would still need to keep his little unit for times when he worked late)  She finally vetoed the house sale idea but lost just about everything else by financing his ‘schemes’.  She had no idea what they were because the smooth talker he was never really explained – just sign this my darling, it will be ok, we are going to reap the rewards in a couple of years.  Then the investment money was handed over to him in cash.

One day he ‘disappeared’, the phone number she used to contact him had been disconnected and the unit was empty. With no idea who the landlord was she couldn’t persue him that way either.  I felt such a fool, she said and there was no way I was going to the police because I thought he was doing the right thing for me by investing my money.  Shame she didn’t have any of the paper work that went along with his fancy words – although by then she had her doubts about whether it was even legitimate paperwork.

Of all the people I have know over the years she (a very intelligent person) would have been one I just couldn’t have imagined being conned like that.  Such a shame, she will be in her seventies now, I haven’t seen her since then and none of her other friends have either.

Sometimes we snigger when we see these seeming humourus little bits and pieces that pop up online but sadly for some there is often a smidgeon in truth to them.

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