She’ll lead you down a path
There’ll be tenderness in the air
She’ll let you come just far enough
So you know she’s really there
Then she’ll look at you and smile
And her eyes will say
She’s got a secret garden
Where everything you want
Where everything you need
Will always stay
A million miles away
It was really hot, the kind of hot where heat radiates off the ground and the air smells of fairy sweat and other sins. All great reckonings begin with a journey, she thought, while driving a rickety piece of junk more aptly called her car, towards the cottage.
It had been a while, obviously it had been too long, but time had done nothing to lessen the ebb and flow of pain over the years. It sat with her, like a cloudy sky above a rainy day, precipitating – at times a light shower, sometimes the after math of rumbling thunder, a hot monsoon that drenched her completely or splashes of icy cold welts.
Not far from the cottage now, she felt those residual feelings re-surfacing like a tongue’s reflex to the flesh of a lemon. She pictured the crumbling gate, a wild thorny rose bush, that lemon tree from which she’d dangle and other garden flowers and weeds that had tickled and scratched bare feet throughout summer.
It’s strange how memories become preserved with their monuments and yet growing up the cottage had seemed much bigger, the crumbling gate led to more than just overgrown grass and the door never hung the way it did now. Her memory insisted on preserving something that was no longer there. Only the lemon tree seemed unchanging, she envied its’ stand against time and had come to resent the cottage for echoing her demeanour.
She still had a key, the door swung open the same way it had all those years ago but with an ache from rust setting into it’s hatch. Had it been there always? Only then it was a sound with prospect. He had been standing on the other side; wet with sea, half naked, blue eyes glistening with sun. Her aunt had planned it while feigning a lemonade recipe; she had wanted the two of them to meet.
Her cheeks were now flushed with the same pink the rose bush was sporting. “I’m here for lemons.” So they went out into the garden and the rest was history.
Over the years they’d fallen into a deep and beautiful love and if life was fair – summer wouldn’t have ended and he wouldn’t have left her to figure out life without him. He was the kind of person so full of zest that you expected him to live forever… She had thought about selling the cottage, like her, without his smile it had been withering away.
For now all she wanted was to sip on some freshly made lemonade and sit amongst the dewdrops in their secret garden.
- Flesh & juice of two lemons (pith and skins discarded)
- 2tbsp organic cane sugar or honey
- 1tsp rose water
- Four cups of brewed hibiscus tea, chilled (optional)
- A few sprigs of mint, bashed to release their scent
- In a blending cup, add the lemon fruit and juice along with the sugar and rose water and blitz until smooth.
- Pour into a jug and add the hibiscus tea, if using or four cups of chilled water.
- Add some ice and mint to serve.
- You can add less or more sugar depending on your taste preferences, I like a sharper lemonade.