You will never guess how I escaped.
I was heading back to get a daiquiri and learn about early 20th century prime ministers, when something fluttered into the sink. The Butter Mouse pulled me over for a look.
A photo of a beach at sunset covered the mucky plughole. The corners were crinkled, and black grot and limescale hid the fading sun. But the pebbles looked so warm, and the water so suitable for taking a dip. I forgot my surroundings, the smell of bleach and stale beer, and could not look away.
The photo expanded, rocketing up through the print sizes until the sides rasped against the porcelain. Heat radiated from baking rocks. Seaweed overrode the cleaning products I wanted to sit on that beach with The Butter Mouse, and listen to the waves.
Stones rattled under my feet, and without any purchase I fell through the ground. A burning light seared our eyes, but rather than a fluorescent glow hanging from a battered polystyrene ceiling, the culprit was the last rays of the sun.
Jean-Michel sat down next to me on the rocks. and folded a piece of paper into his pocket.
‘You took your time,’ he said. ‘I hope you had fun. The Kandinsky is refuelling, so we’ll stop here for a while. I am sure you will find it relaxing. Welcome to Crotti. Maybe you can do some jokes or something.’
On the horizon, hundreds of tents flapped their fabric likes geese. The tacky monoliths of the clubs and house parties joined them, heading off to nowhere.
So here we are, chilling on the beach. It’s hard to imagine we were worried. Nadada always helps you out. I wonder if the other patrons wondered what happened to us. We had a daiquiri on the way after all.
Jean-Michel kindly let me use the photo for my blog.