Monday, 22 September 2014

A photo is worth a thousand words

A photo is worth a thousand words


I have never noticed that you had freckles, a little splash of sunshine on your face. Did they only come out in the sun or did you always have them?
You are wearing a pair of stylish sun glasses which captures a magic moment of a family holiday in their reflection. There is so much motion, so much life and happiness – your family is having a whale of a time – the boys are running around enjoying the sunshine without a care in the world while he halted, tenderly looking back at you. I wonder what’s on his mind. The sun is blazing and the white sand is glittering, making the whole picture look like a fancy holiday brochure.
You positioned yourself on the sand in a very elegant manner like a queen - with your legs pulled up to your body gently hugging them with your arms - your posture and everything about you is refined, sophisticated.  Your handbag is loyally sitting right next to you like a faithful dog, the pink headscarf drapes perfectly around your head, the Prada sun glasses add that final touch of va-va-voom making you look like a glamour model from Vogue, you are picture perfect.
You are looking away - looking at the sea, taking everything in. You are tired, I know that now. And as I am looking at you being thoughtful and miles away from that perfect holiday, I realise that you knew, that very moment you knew that it was your last holiday with your boys and your man. The sands of your time were running out, fast. There was nothing left to do but make the most of it.
And the most of it you made. Having created so many happy memories with your family and your friends, you are forever ingrained on their hearts and minds like an ancient inscription, treasured and admired. They remember you, they talk about you, they miss you, they love you – you made a huge impact on more people than you can imagine.
And although you are long gone now I can still see you everywhere. You are in the colour scheme in the house; in the kitchen in the little ornaments; in the bathroom your jewellery is still hanging right next to where my electric toothbrush is charging every other weekend when I’m up in my country home; even in the bedroom you look over his bed, when I’m fast asleep cuddled into him - you are watching over me.
As I am helping to set up for yet another party, that was such a frequent occasion when you were around, I lift up my head and meet your steady gaze. And although I can’t see your eyes behind those sun shades, I know you are watching me.
The house is ready, the food is set up on the table, the drinks are chilling and the glasses are lined up like the soldiers awaiting their orders. And as I look around the sudden chill runs down my spine and a feeling of nostalgia overcomes me – not mine but yours, a party without you. And for a split second I think I see a tear running down your cheek and another set of freckles appear out of nowhere. I blink and look away for a moment; no, it is just my imagination running away with me.

But we don’t have time for melancholy today, after all we have a party to host. Drink, I decide! They say alcohol doesn’t solve anything but then again, neither does water. Yours was pink champagne, wasn’t it? I pour myself a drink, lift up my glass and toast you. Cheers! And as I take a sip from my glass I see a faint trace of a smile on your face… Or was it just my imagination?