Written as part of creative writing course run by @dotterel at Bringing up Charlie. By its nature, this is unedited: constructive criticism is welcome!
I sit cradling a cup of tea. Gin and tonic appeals, but it is too early in the day. The numbers don’t add up and my mind is tied up in knots with worry.
The green plastic chair isn’t the most comfortable place to sit, but it is my spot: my place of peace and quiet, just for now.
Mustard, our Labrador, lies behind me. I can hear him panting in the heat, though his body lies cooling on the cold concrete slabs of our veranda. He has been running around the garden chasing the cat and irritating the gardener. Like me, he now seeks solace at the front of the house.
So far the cat has shown no interest in the birds that are nesting in the tubular posts holding up the corrugated iron roof. There are more tweets this week than last: the eggs have finally hatched. Mother sparrow, I assume, is busy flying in and out, bits of nesting grass sticking out at odd angles.
The air is still, heavy with heat. The sunlight fires down on the garden in front of me. The trees remain green, but the grass is browning despite the gardener’s best efforts to water it. There is too much lawn and I am stingy with water use when there is always a risk of drought. The marigolds have flowered: a brilliant display of orange encircling the pine tree. The bougainvillea is a riot of maroon and red clambering up and over the concrete walls that surround our house.
I lean forward and rest my elbows on the garden table. It is lovely here. My head may have been spinning with financial problems but here – here I find peace. Here life is put in perspective again. Here a soothing cup of tea has worked wonders for the emotions. I am reluctant to return to the books, but I smile, as I know this patch of paradise is available to me whenever I want.
Draining the mug, I go back to work.