P has had two days of torrential rain. I was awoken today by the cold, like yesterday, my breath smelled of vodka, Latvian.
I stood by the window, watching the rain, thinking that Patrick might have hugged me from behind. And I watched the window of the oposite building, where, on Friday, a young neighbour would stand looking at me. We exchanged looks, and smiles, those easy and radiant smiles he had. He is young, his body lithe and deeply suntanned. And we waved at each other, at dusk. The night came, and he stood at the window, with no shirt on, and gave me his winning smiles while I gave him signals that he should come over to have a drink, upon which he shook his head in refusal. And we talked, I by my window and he by his, with our fingers. I asked him his phone number, which, after he returned to his room, he wrote on a piece of paper, which I told him that I could not see. I was about to give him mine, with my fingers, when another neighbour came to the window next to his, talking on his phone and smoking. He returned to his room, and I stood there whispering my wish that he would come by again, only once would suffice. After all, the annoying neighbour disappeared, leaving the vista for my muse, who smiled and signalled that his much younger sister would come downstairs and give me the note in which was written his number. And I hurriedly scratched a piece from my notebook, wrote down my number and dashed off downstairs to give the girl.
So I had his number. I texted him to tell him my name, and where I came from. And it was not until a moment passed that I called him. And much to my dismay, he talked in the local language, and all I could get from it was that he does not speak English.
Late at night, he came by the window, waving me goodbye and, his hands clapped together and put under his tilted head, telling me that he was going to bed soon. And with the closing window, he was off the scene.
And today morning, I stood by the window and imagined that he was standing by his, smiling at me. And a sudden feeling awakened in me that I missed my ex lovers less and less, in the rain, and even that I was less certain about Patrick. They all now stood behind a veil that I could not reach out for. And I stared down at puddles on the street, and thought that my memories were flowing like bubbles in the rain. And I recalled those times of rain when I was a child, I would play in the puddles and make boats out of my notebooks and exam papers, and let them float away along the stream. The neighbourhood was deserted, because of the hard rain.
And I stood in the garden while the moon was rising, bathing the river with its golden light. I was enveloped in the silence, disturbed only occasional boats passing by. And it was one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever seen.
That was what I thought when I sat in the garden at Helen’s. And one morning in February or March, I will wake up in one of the rooms there, and I will watch the sunrise and think that much later I will miss these days when I thought about the young men with a title in my mind “Boys in the country of endless summers.”
Like bubbles in the rain, my memories flow…