... an amorphous and only vaguely acknowledged sense of anticipation even before I boarded the plane that heightened to a pitch as I got into the car and drove for the first time the route that was to become so pleasurably familiar over the course of the three weeks.
... the sudden attack of nerves that hit as I sat just out of sight in the lane and picked up the phone to check I was in the right place, and the shyness in that very first greeting.
... an almost imperceptible shake in a pair of hands being used to guide me through the house.
... standing in the kitchen on that maiden morning, in sunshine, watching Dave make the bacon sandwiches that were to be our only sustenance that first day.
... hesitancy in conversation and covert glances, and the growing ease as our dialogue extended.
... walking across wintry fields, toes tingling, cheeks flushed, gazing out towards a line of skeletal trees silhouetted against a brooding skyline, talking, listening and slipping very naturally into and out of companionable silence.
... and then the snug: hiding away in the depths of a joyously unspoiled rural pub and feeling a delicious languor steal over me as the warmth of the wine radiated through my arms and hands, down to my legs and feet, and the space narrowed between us.
... and, of course, those first tiny, tentative kisses... it's not that we have hope - we shelter it.
"In reality we are always between two times: that of the body and that of consciousness."
Cassandra Wilson on the radio:
I just want to see you
when the sun goes down.
It's as simple as that
I want to see you when the sun goes down
no more than that.