As it is soon Valentines day, I thought I would post this as an extra entry this month. It is a painting by Theo Michael and a story by me. I think it is very fitting for Valentines day, what do you think?
If you like the painting, you can get it here:
If you like the story, you can just tell me :)
Scent of a Rose
Have you ever met someone and been so totally in love and in awe of them it almost hurts? Marios had. He would only have to look into her big Green eyes and he swore that his heart would literally explode with love. Every move she made every sound she made just left him breathless. His every waking and sleeping thought was of Anna. He was so lucky to have found such a special person.
That was an eternity ago, and he still felt the same. Today Marios was alone sitting on the veranda of their home and staring out over the ocean in front of him and remembering their life together. He recalled her little idiosyncrasies like whenever he leant towards her to kiss her, she would also lean forward but at the last second she would stick out her tongue and lick the end of his nose with it and laugh. He remembered how he once bought her a dozen Red Roses for no reason other than that he loved her. She loved Roses. She had taken them in both hands and lifted them up to her nose and breathed in deeply savouring their strong scent. She adored them. Marios would bring her Roses for her Birthday, their Anniversary, Christmas and of course Valentines day. Valentine’s day was the day they had met for the first time all those years ago on this very beach.
Marios had been test driving the old Zundapp motorbike he had lovingly restored. The beach was pretty deserted and rarely used by the tourists. Anna had been sitting on a rock by the waters’ edge with her feet in the water. She was holding a single Rose to her nose. It was scenes like this that made Marios wish he had talent and could paint. What a picture that would have made. Marios couldn’t resist so he approached her.
“Gift from a secret admirer?” he asked.
Anna had chuckled and with her big Green eyes burrowing into his she answered.
“No, but it’s a gift from me to me, it is Valentine’s day.”
They chatted for a while but now it was time for Anna to go.
“I would love to see you again.” Marios half asked half stated.
“I go back to the UK tomorrow, but I will be back next Valentine’s day.”
“It’s a date!” said Marios, disappointed but happy all mixed together.
“But why Valentine’s day?” Marios asked as his curiosity got the better of him.
“It’s my grandfathers’ memorial day. His name was Valentino and oddly enough he died on Valentine’s day, so I come and remember him at his grave.”
“Oh, sorry about your loss.” Said Marios, not knowing what else to say.
“Oh it’s ok, he was very old.”
Anna gently slid off the rock. Marios didn’t want her to go.
“See you next year then,” she said giving Marios a smile that he is yet to forget.
“Er, er, yeah ok, I’ll be here.”
He watched as Anna walked up off the beach and disappeared into the distance.
The year passed very slowly for Marios, but it eventually passed. Marios was beside himself with excitement, he had bought a bunch of Red Roses for Anna. He couldn’t wait to see her. He got on his Zundapp and slowly drove towards the rock and yes, there she was sitting on it with her feet kicking in the water. Marios couldn’t get there soon enough.
“Hi!” he said excitedly as he dismounted the bike and let it fall to the sand. He held out the bunch of Roses and handed them to Anna.
“Happy Valentines!” he said grinning from ear to ear.
“Oh they are lovely, thank you so much. I have something for you too I thought it would look great on your motorbike.”
Anna leant back and pulled out an oblong box from behind her and handed it to Marios.
“What is it?”
“Open it and see.”
Marios hurriedly opened the box and inside was a number plate. Not an ordinary number plate, a custom one. It read ‘FEB 14’
“Wow must have cost a fortune!” said Marios as he admired the plate.
“Not really. Originally it was ‘FE – 814, but I had the ‘8’ moved closer to the’ E’ so now at a glance it looks like ‘FEB 14’ “
Marios stood in silence for a moment then he blurted it out.
“Will you marry me?” He had no idea where that had come from he just knew he couldn’t be without her.
“I thought you would never ask!” she screamed with laughter.
They were married within the week.
That was 55 years ago. Marios was grateful that they had grown old together but he wished he had gone first. Anna had passed away 5 years ago now and he still missed her like crazy. For 5 years now every Valentine’s day Marios would buy a dozen Red Roses and take them to the rock where they had met. He would lay them down at the base of the rock and talk to Anna as if she was still sat on it. The fact that a stray cat was always there made him feel less foolish about talking to an empty space. As he talked to Anna he stroked the cat that would always plonk itself down on top of the Roses. The cat would smell them first one at a time then just sit on them. It had been there every year. Marios picked up the cat and looked into its eyes. They were huge and Green, just like Annas’. He held the cat closer to his chest. The cat lifted its head and looked up at Marios. It then did something very strange it stuck its tongue out and licked the tip of Marios nose......
See you soon xx
I’m very excited about my blog entries for the next few months. A local artist and friend, Theo Michael, is putting a book together of his paintings, and to accompany each painting there will be a short story. There are several contributors for the stories, including Theo himself and of course myself. So for the next several months, I will be putting up one of Theo’s paintings and MY relevant short story. You can see Theo’s work and more stories under his blog section, ‘Every wall needs a story’, here:
This month’s entry is called: ‘Balcony with a view’. I hope you enjoy both the painting and the story. Your comments are welcome.
Balcony with a view
As we stand here on the balcony, I am thinking what a breath taking view this is. I am so happy that they have renovated this beautiful Hotel. A lot of buildings were lost and badly damaged during the short war on this amazing Mediterranean island. It was a disastrous thing to happen here as the island depended heavily on the financial income from the tourists. This Hotel had always been popular, not just for its location, but when you asked for a room with a view, you got that and more.
Some good did come of the war, I met Victor! Let me tell you about it, it is a proper love story, a romance with all the trimmings.
I had been working at this very Hotel as a receptionist when the war broke out. Of course when the first bombs were dropped, the tourists all went home and the Hotels became deserted, but they were put to good use. A couple were commandeered and used for accommodation and headquarters for the soldiers, and this one as a makeshift Hospital for the wounded. That’s when I first met Victor. No he wasn’t a wounded soldier like most war time romances in films would have you believe, no he was a newspaper reporter who was covering the war for an English newspaper. I had become a general dogs’ body running around fetching this and fetching that for the Doctors. On the day Victor and I met, I was trying to sweep the Hotel lobby, when he walked in via the big glass sliding doors at the entrance of the Hotel. Our eyes locked immediately! My heart was skipping every other beat, and my broom was sweeping on the same spot over and over again. He was, as they say, tall, dark and handsome. He wore a dark suit topped with a hat which had a White band around it, the one he is wearing now. Between the band and the hat was a small ticket which read “PRESS”.
“Hi!” he said in a deep, dark, Velvety voice.
“Er, hi”, I managed to splutter.
The weeks passed quickly as did the time we would snatch from our duties to be together. Our love was effortless, just as it is now.
This room with this balcony was allocated to Victor and I as we were now thought of as a couple, which we certainly are. My own apartment had been destroyed by a bomb, and Victor coming from London, had no particular place to stay, so it was perfect. After our days duties we would eventually meet in room 406, our room, this room, a room with a balcony with a view.
Allow me to tell you dear reader, about a very special night. I had finished my days work and I had come up to this room. Victor was already home. He had laid the table for two with candles in the middle and a single Red Rose in a small vase, and I could smell food. He is so romantic. He came out of the bedroom and he had a Red dress hanging over his arm, this Red dress that I’m wearing now.
“Here, put this on,” he said handing me the dress.
I did and it fits perfectly, don’t you think? Victor had remembered that it was my birthday. We wined and dined and then held each other as we stood on the balcony just looking out over the ocean and thinking what a wonderful world this is. Of course it all looked very different then, most buildings were in ruins, and there were craters in the road, not like now....
My last real memory as we stood on our balcony was hearing a high pitched whistling noise that got louder and louder until it finally stopped when it hit our balcony and us.
That was 75 years ago, but we still come once a year to visit our balcony with a view!
Till next month, be well.
Well you know I'm an Author, so you keep reading, and I will keep writing :)