The day has been sulking.
It scowls through a veil of miserable, monochrome clouds. They hang, bleak and brooding, outside my office windows, stealing light. They cloak me in melancholy as these long, arduous, empty, unrewarding business hours pass.
Yet there is a moment, early in the afternoon, when a shaft of unexpected sunlight escapes the gloom
It smears honey over the surface of my desk and touches my face through the glass with a warm and friendly hand. I close my eyes .
And then, inexplicably, a vivid memory.
I am there again, twenty odd years and two thousand miles away.
The hot sun is beating down from an impossibly blue sky. It is late in the afternoon but the temperature is still in the upper eighties fahrenheit. We have emerged from the relative cool of our room into an Aegean furnace that takes our breath away. There is barely a breeze.
Looking out across the harbour the sea is still. Gaily coloured boats barely bob on flat waves, motionless. From the trees behind us the whirring of cicadas is intense. In the small bar everyone is seeking shade beneath umbrellas. Ice melts in glasses full of long drinks. The narrow road shimmers.
As we walk down the blindingly white concrete steps and onto the beach, the hot sand stings my toes. We make our way to the quiet, deserted water’s edge holding hands. Small waves lap at our feet. The water is deliciously cool. It calls to us with a siren voice.
She smiles at me and it seems in one movement she unfastens the bow at the back of her halter neck dress and sheds it like a brightly coloured skin. She is naked. And although I had been exploring her extraordinary body all afternoon. I gasp.
She is a goddess. Every perfect inch of her. And I feel myself harden as she turns, elegant and beautiful, and enters the sea,
The phone rings on my desk.
In my mind I reach for her, trying to cling onto her, but she is gone.
It was a long time ago in some other time and place.
But for just a few precious, golden minutes, in the midst of this tedious English winter, there is a glorious Caribbean summer in my soul.
© the author writing as Romantic Dominant
Photo courtesy of a friend.