It’s not any consolation but we have stolen the sun from our friend. We have stolen it from her and from everyone who lives in her building. We have stolen the sun from her neighbourhood, from her whole city. We have stolen the whole sun from the whole of Berlin.
But it is little consolation. Or was. As I write these words I am having a change of heart.
The window is open and the late afternoon is green and blue; blue sky above a tangle of green everything. There are violet and crimson bells twirling like ballerinas on the fuchsia tree which is so rampant and so close to touch that it’s branches have become immovable awnings for the window.
The tangle has grown a foot in our week’s absence. Apart from the vibrancy of the ballet dancers, everything grows in one colour – green, green, green. Which is three. There is so much green it is threefold as green as anywhere else.
The darling nasturtiums have not yet blossomed although they have brought forth tiny, new tips in pale gold which I think are flower buds. The buds of their imaginations. If the seed packet is to be believed, their imaginations will be orange, brick red, magenta and gold.
Right now they are all curly-wurly stems and circles, twisting, bending, stretching to find the light above the density of this patch of earth that was once our tiny garden and is now our tiny jungle.
We planted the nasturtiums in hot pink window boxes, a look that has added a dose of girlie sex appeal and wantoness to the building whose tone is otherwise stone grey. Who needs more grey in these parts? When the sky has only just turned blue after weeks and weeks of a flat, palling alternative? No-one. That is my guess.
Whatever the weather our window boxes bring relief for tired eyes and souls, some whose beds may be too cold or too empty. Once the flowers bloom, anything could happen … Hot pink window boxes smacking lips with all those fancy colours? …The neighbourhood may go all tra-la-la if you know what I mean. It sure is going to get pretty around here.
The hot pink window boxes are a success in anyone’s language.
In the ones outside our bedroom the darling nasturtiums have decided to grow up. Up up up … They now resemble a Christmas tree. I will not question their shape; they know how to grow, they know what they are doing.
They really know – I estimate the spiral has grown three inches since I got up this morning. It is like Jack and the beanstalk. I will climb to the top maybe next week and see what is up there. Who is up there. I am not afraid of giants.
… Now it is yesterday. I mean that was. Today is tomorrow. And now we are here. In today.
And the sun has gone. Back to Berlin, I suspect, from whence we borrowed it. In my mind we stole it which does not always mean you have to give it back …
Here you are, oh city with so much going for you anyway! Here, have the sun as well!
Life can seem unfair after a holiday.
How come …!?!?!?!?
and then you make a list:
how come they get ALL the cafes
and ALL the dedicated bicycle lanes
and ALL the grooviness
and ALL the EVERYTHING THAT IS MISSING FROM HERE – arty boutiques, arty people, arty art, arty-farty?
How come? Why? Why why why?
Or maybe you went to the beach.
How come they get all the surf?
Or the forest.
How come they get all the mulch and leaves on the ground AND new ones on the trees?
It can turn you into a whinger.
My advice is to get your own back. Take the sun, even for a day. Take the surf, if you can. Take all the trees and and all the people and the arts and the farts. Take as much as you are missing in your own life and hold onto it … hold on tight …
… because maybe you are going to have to give it back …
Tomorrow. Or the day after.
That’s the thing about holidays. If they were no good, no-one would go on them. We would go to work for a change. Or do some chores. Or pray for bad weather.
Now I’m just arsing around trying to get to a thousand words. It’s a distraction. Not for you, hopefully, but for me.
Because if I look out the window right now, the sky has turned from yesterday blue to the colour of our building.
And it is weeping. For itself.
This is no good. I am going to have to take the whole sky on holiday with us next time. I don’t know which carrier will take us when they find out what I have in my luggage.
Open you bag please. Thankyou. Ah … uh … ?
It is the sky.
It is the weeping sky.
How will I explain it? How would anyone?
How to explain? …