A Short Story, or a Long One.
July 9, 2013 § Leave a comment
It was the winter in the year that we gave it all. I had all my hair cut off, and it was so cold that my hands got numb even with gloves on. The Christmas trees were bundled up in a huge pile under the sycamores and I could smell the scent of them from nearly a block away – a smell that made me want to live in that moment forever, a smell so full that it is quite impossible to describe the richness of it. I felt sad, even as I breathed in and felt alive, for I knew that I couldn’t hold onto it; that either I would walk away or the trees would leave. We were in love then; all of us were. We cooked lavish meals drenched in wine and full of colour, we drank champagne for no reason at all, we awoke early and slept late and everywhere we looked there was potential. Of course, we pretended that there wasn’t, that it was all just terribly ordinary, but we knew deep down that we were the lucky ones. We wanted everything, and we felt that it was within our reach – that even if it was hard sometimes we were on the cusp of wonder – big, bold, beautiful. We painted our kitchen violet and our bathroom grey and sat in the lounge with the sunlight streaming in, drinking coffee and laughing. Outside, the buses rumbled by, always stopping and gassing right in front of our gate. We didn’t mind. I watched the people on them sometimes – young and old, male and female, skinny and fat – and wondered where they were going, and what their home was like, and if they were happy or disappointed or just plain bored. I always turned back inside with a sense of gratitude, though whether or not I knew it then I’m not sure. We felt old and young at the same time – a glorious feeling of freedom and certainty that only exists for a short while, unless you are really lucky (or really unlucky). It was as though we could run across a continent; snapping photographs and dancing in bars and adoring in churches, and yet do it all knowing that we would never regret it, because we weren’t foolish enough. We made decisions – we weren’t taken by them – and yet we didn’t spend that long deliberating, because we knew there was no need for it.