far too much writing, far too many photos

Two mornings ago, under heavy fog:

This morning, clear as a bell:

**************

[continued from last entry]

Cutting to the chase: not long after that evening I found myself back at Rod and Alicia’s place. For the real event. About to plunge into illicit activity. Sanctioned activity, sort of, given that the host couple had thrown the occasion together. But still. After the previous evening, Lisa had wisely decided to bail, leaving Rod to line up another partner for the evening — another theatre department student.

And there we all were. After a bit of preliminary pseudo-social blah-blah, Alicia and I retired to the bedroom. Candles, clean sheets, etc. Especially etc. An evening that turned out to be about far more than overheated thrashing around in bed for Alicia and me, cementing something — a mutual consent, an intention to get serious about what we’d started. A connecting that continued messily on in the ensuing weeks and months, causing abundant drama and angstful happenings.

A truth: the two of them had, on some level, for some time, been looking for a reason to split up. I became it.

Months later. Alicia had moved out of the marital home into an apartment miles away. She and I saw ever more of each other, becoming gradually, cautiously more open toward the rest of the world about our twoness. Cautiously, because some tensions remained among the involved parties, the situation not yet having reached a point of actual tranquility.

One evening, at her place. After bedtime, the lights off, the two of us falling asleep. The phone rang, Alicia picked up to find Rod on the other end of the line. Talking about being lonely. Fishing, apparently, for company, maybe for an invite to come over. I listened to the faint buzz of his voice, feeling badly for him. I listened to her clumsy, confused responses, her not wanting to hurt him, but also not wanting to disclose that she was in bed with me — me feeling badly for her and at the same time getting the feeling that it would mean trouble if she couldn’t get firm, say goodnight, get off the phone. But she couldn’t, and at some point Rod understood why. I heard him yelling, demanding to know if she had somebody staying over, heard her stammering, non-responsive answers, Alicia completely unprepared for a situation like that. And then he’d hung up, the post-phone-call air in the bedroom vibrating with the energy of the exchange.

I had a bad feeling about what had happened, found myself sitting up, swinging my legs over the side of the bed. A part of me urgently counseled getting out of there, going home, the impulse growing in intensity as I sat, indecisive, unable to marshal movement. Minutes passed, me frozen in that position, until I finally got slowly to my feet, pulled on clothes, tried to get out the door without feeling like I was abandoning Alicia. And when I stepped out into the night air and headed down the apartment complex’s driveway to my car, I saw Rod striding up the driveway, face set in an expression of intense anger. He ignored me, steamed past, disappeared into the building. I heard his footsteps going up the steps to Alicia’s flat, found myself turning around, going back inside and up the stairs after him, to the landing where he stood pounding on her door, demanding to be let in.

[to be continued]

Madrid, te echo de menos.

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