Time Bookends

03:45
The time when most people are fast asleep.
Dreaming and rejuvenating.
Normally waking at this time, she would be dragged into life, furry eyed and gritty mouthed, into slow alertness.
This time it was a relief.
The nagging, throbbing ache of a migraine had been there for a few hours. She had been unable to take the precious table that would have made it go away. On this occasion the hormone surges and hours had been all wrong.
It was a relief to know that this small hour allowed action.

A start.
Admittedly an early start. The beginning of an adventure.
A journey of discovery to somewhere new.
Days of joy and sunshine, water (salt & fresh), hills and food.
The people watching improves, the gestures are more precise, more dramatic and the looks and glances intimate and atmospheric.

03:45
Not talking, whispered words in her ear.
Incoherent murmurings.
Even though there are no endearments the words give comfort and bring a smile.
Later, as always, whatever time of the day someone is drinking a glass of rose or a pastis.
The food is superb the company likewise.

03:45
Crunching footsteps over the gravel outside.
A deer? A dog? The old fella that fell flat on his face?
This time it did not matter
That day – crystal clear lake water; crashing waves on the coast.
Wonderful wildlife – lizards; a praying mantis and beautiful floating vultures sailing on the thermals high above the gorge.

03:45
Passes unnoticed as it should. Sleeping a dreamless sleep.
This day sees waves of weather washing into the coast.
Not many moments of sparkling sun. The sharp smell of pines.
The frenetic blasts of horns celebrating a just in time wedding.
Then
A delay and long dragging moments of killing time.

Now it is an ending – 03:45
The exact moment they return back to the start and the place it all began.
Her holiday ends at the precise time it started . . . . . . .

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