I spent the day alone. P. having gone to Paris.
Alone, in a place that can be very lonely.
The first time I realized my loneliness was when we had moved to Washington, when we were still very young. P. had gone on ahead, to case the joint, so to speak, and I followed him a few months later. We lived in a hotel in Georgetown, aptly called The Georgetown Dutch Inn. A quaint little place, with mock antiques in the middle of this bustling fashionable part of the metropolis.
P. may well have been lonely, when he first arrived, but he had his job during the day. I had no job and loads of time to waste. A car at my disposal, but nowhere to go. I used it for visits of politesse, with the Ambassador’s wife and the wife of the second in command, who welcomed the announcement of my presence with a forceful “Goddamn!” and offered me whiskey, when I expected morning coffee.
At times I felt very alone in this strange country, that was not at all what I had anticipated from the movies and series I had watched on television. But I made a discovery: there was always one person with me, whom I could rely on. Who was always there, and who wouldn’t let me down: me. She was very reassuring; she wouldn’t change, whatever the circumstances. And she wouldn’t let me down.
She has been true to form, and she has never left me.
She is still here. While I wait for P. to come back on the train from Paris.