The stories of my life on a little island in the middle of the Mediterranean sea ... and my occasional adventures beyond these shores.

Friday, 21 June 2013

Fabulous Fridays: Summer

It’s here again, the crazy season. Notwithstanding the rather cool temperatures we had last week, I never doubted it would make it’s appearance. And this week, summer made its grand debut. You could say it arrived with a vengeance - the temperature at 7.30am this morning was 29C.

I could yearn for the freshness of spring or I can look forward to a new season, new expectations, new adventures. We do have some plans. There’s the Mischief  Maker’s room to re-decorate; trips to the beach; a vacation; new books to read; a few parties to organise; photos to take; memories to make.

So much as I’d like our summers to look like this …

Cornwall 193

I know that they won’t, and that the fact that they look like this instead …

First Swim of the Year (9)

is not so bad after all.

So, what are your plans this summer?

Saturday, 15 June 2013

A Decade

My husband and I met here in Malta in a pub called Zmerc (which is pronounced Zmerch). It was the summer of 2000 and he was in Malta for a family reunion. You see, his mum is Maltese and I was good friends with his cousin (or rather, second cousin, but everyone is a cousin here in Malta). I received a phone call at work that morning and was invited to attend. Having nothing planned, I decided that I would. I suppose you could say that the rest is history – but not quite.
Meeting new people in person is always tough for me. So I spent the evening sipping Chardonnay, answering questions and smiling a lot. The next day was business as usual and the previous evening was soon just a hazy  memory. Life went  on and I never thought back about that night. A year later, I got uninvolved with the person I had been dating and a few weeks after that I wrote my first e-mail to a handsome guy from St Louis. We wrote back and forth every day, and now that I know my husband so much better, I realise how hard that must have been for him. Unlike me, he is not a scribbler. That December he returned to Malta for another cousin’s wedding and we became inseparable.
But we had to separate, of course, making plans to meet in the US the following year. Since that visit,  I’ve travelled to America many times, but that first trip stands out as the most memorable. We met in Chicago and I can still remember feeling dazed and jet-lagged, walking in the shadow of some of the tallest buildings I had ever seen and trying to take it all in. It felt surreal. Chicago has a vibe all of its own and it resonates well with me, even though I am not a city person. But it has carved a niche in my heart and I love it most of all the US cities I have seen so far. After Chicago, we flew to St Louis to meet family and then we headed west, to Salt Lake City. From there we drove to Moab, visiting Arches National Park and Bryce Canyon  National Park and then on to Las Vegas and the West Rim of the Grand Canyon.
Perhaps it was inevitable, but I was still shocked when he proposed to me on the 8th of July, as the sun set behind Delicate Arch in Moab. We were married ten years ago today, in a small church, in my home town. It’s foundation stone was laid in 1492 – quite appropriate, don’t you think?
This post is long enough, so I won’t go into our actual wedding day. Maybe I will write about that some other time. For today, I will leave you with ‘our song’.

Thursday, 6 June 2013

Losing Sight Of The Shore

When you live on an island as small as this one, you learn from an early age where your boundaries end. It’s right there, at the precise point where the blue waves kiss the land. Beyond that is the unknown, the ancient sea, the infinite ocean. We can confine ourselves to these shores, or we can look beyond the horizon. It is the story of life on a small island – the constant reaching out and drawing in, like the waves, like the sea.
Salib tal-Gholja, Delimara, Marsaxlokk (76)
It’s the same with writing. Sometimes we have to search deep within ourselves. And sometimes, we have to look beyond the immediate and reach out to that intangible area where only our imagination can take us. I am going through a rather barren phase right now. I am living in a world that is strangely void of words. Sometimes I am tempted to give up. To curl up in a corner till the words land gently around me again, like the salty sea spray.
Salib tal-Gholja, Delimara, Marsaxlokk (87)
But I refuse to let myself be defeated. Some advise to continue writing; despite everything, to continue. So I am following that advice. Today, I am not writing about anything in particular, just going with the flow. I think they call it free-writing. And who knows, perhaps if I search very deep within, I will find them again, those lost words. Or maybe it’s time to lose sight of the shore.

Either way, I think it is going to be a voyage of self-discovery.


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