Ruby’s reputation in Edinburgh politics grew , and one morning over our tea and toast she asked what I would think if she ran for Edinburgh council. I’d just spent the night dealing with three separate hen parties that had descended on the bar almost at the same time, and having a sensible discussion about career choices was not something I felt I was really up to. But even so, something about Ruby’s demeanor showed me how serious this was, so I asked her to tell me all about it.
She did, and as she talked, I saw the same excitement and determination that I’d noticed when she wanted to get her degree, and again when she wanted to move here to Edinburgh. I told her that I thought it would be a great idea, and also that I was sure she would make a wonderful City councilor. She smiled and came over, sat on my lap and kissed me. “Oh Tony,” she said. “I love you so much. You give me the courage to be the person I was born to be, and I wouldn’t have achieved half of what I have done without you.”
Even now, I can still see the glow on Ruby’s face, the excitement in her eyes, and that smile she had. It was one of the memories that make my heart stop and brings tears of joy to my eyes.
Ruby ran for office for the Green party and was only narrowly defeated by the Labour candidate. Rather than being downhearted by the defeat, it seemed to spur her ambitions on, and soon she had switched over to the Scottish Nationalist Party.
I didn’t share her Nationalist views, and couldn’t really understand why Scotland would want to leave the United Kingdom. On the other hand, I just wasn’t a political person, and I and I couldn’t really see that it would make a difference one way or the other. I had always thought that politicians were just a bunch of windbags, only out for what they could get. But for Ruby’s sake, I tried to get along with her new friends, and soon learned to just ignore the politics and talk about safer topics.
Ruby and I slipped into a comfortable routine that worked, but not in any conventional way. Although her life revolved around political meetings and rallies, and mine around the piano bar and having fun, we still met in the middle and loved each other to bits. I had lots of offers from inebriated women at the bar, and not a few men too, but I always turned them aside; my heart belonged to Ruby, and I was going to make sure my body followed along too.