Just sitting in the sun, really

Saturday March 12, 2005

I should have got my sketchbook out of course. Or, at least, my camera. And since both activities seemed too much effort, I should have sat there with my notebook on my knee, scribbling impressions and snatches of conversation as people came by. As a last resort, I really ought to have done a bit of productive people watching.

Oh, but the sun was warm, I was sheltered from the wind, the bench was comfortable, and I let all thought of industry drift away as I closed my eyes and cashed in one of my ‘old man sitting in the sun’ cheques.

There’s no way of describing the sheer ecstasy of the first real bit of sunshine of the year. No way of recording the state of bliss as it falls on tired skin and lifts aches and miseries out of winter-creaked joints. For a while, time stops, and there’s nothing important enough to intrude upon an old man’s communion with the sun.

So I sat there, basking, feeling the weight of the dark months lift from my soul.

When the sun moved round and the shade fell on me once more, I stretched, yawned, gathered my wits from wherever they’d fallen, and sauntered over to the shop for bread and milk.

When I got home, I did a little eBaying as my current batch of goodies sold or failed to sell throughout the day and evening. Nothing more, though. The sun had gone for the time being but the memory of it stayed with me, sweet and languid, discouraging activity of any kind.

It was pasta night, so Graham pulled out the saucepans and did something delicious with sun-dried tomatoes, black olives, capers and an indecent amount of olive oil. All I had to do was eat. We followed it with apricot yoghurt and the fruit bowl.

I pushed my chair back, held my tummy, and sighed my contentment into receptive ears.

“You obviously enjoyed that. I’m glad. So, what have you been up to today, then?”

“Oh,” I said. “Nothing much. Just sitting in the sun, really.”



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