We only part to meet again.
Change as ye list, ye winds; my heart shall be
The faithful compass that still points to thee.
When Lois Daniel took her creative writing classes she would give her students headings to inspire them to write their recollections and one of them dreamed up for herself ‘Brief encounters.’ This resonated with the period I am writing about at present in ‘Past Imperfect’.
It was holiday time and the shop had been crammed with mothers trying to kit their children out for next term. Finally I closed the shop for lunch and realised I was ten minutes late for my lunch appointment with my friend Doreen who had a very short fuse. I locked the shop door and gave it the obligatory three rattles to make sure I had locked it properly (the shop was loaded with cash) and ran off down
I lost my balance and he grabbed my arms. I hadn’t seen anyone quite like him in the town before; he looked like a diplomat; beautifully dressed and the sort of tan you get from living abroad. His hair was immaculate- silver at the temples - and his eyes were crinkled in a gentle smile and were dark blue.
He gazed down at me and said,
‘I’ve been looking for someone like you for the last ten years.’
I spluttered apologies and said I was very late and ran off absolutely certain I would see him again - perhaps after I had explained to Doreen. That took rather longer than expected and over lunch I told her what had happened and we speculated about what had happened ten years ago.
I looked and looked but I never saw him again.
How about you? Have you had any brief encounters?