I slipped out of the shower and wrapped a light Spanish wrap, bought on an almost forgotten holiday abroad, around me, tucking it firmly into place. My hair streamed droplets onto my shoulders when I dragged a wide comb through it and as I massaged moisture cream around my face and down my neck, I stood at the window looking down on the garden.
It was another scorcher! Blue sky, not a wisp of a cloud in sight. The garden chairs were arranged somewhat haphazardly under the mock-orange tree which glowed translucently, white petals completely still. I padded down stairs in bare feet and poured a glass of icy juice, adding, just for fun, an orange cocktail umbrella, a souvenir of another occasion that had been sitting in the press preserving its memories.
Down the two shallow steps to the patio – well, it was a patio once, now the gaps between the concrete slabs were bulging with wild flowers and tufts of grass, but it still retained a rather shabby elegance. Heat from the plastic seat of the not-at-all elegant garden seat oozed through my cotton wrap and I lay back and sipped the icy liquid. The heat was intense now and the air seemed to hover around me. I was lulled by the humming sound of bees in the shrub that clung the length of the brick wall, camouflaging the ugly garden sheds of my neighbours and turning my concrete jungle into a secret garden.
A rustle in the leaves of the tall pear tree disturbed me from my reverie and I glanced lazily in that direction. That was when I saw him………