Goodbye Danny: Carefree and happy

Goodbye Danny: Carefree and happy

An Extract


Goodbye Danny


I WAS ALREADY wide-awake at 4.30am when the radio alarm filtered through the room. Danny stirred, rolled towards me and placed an arm around my waist. I flinched.

‘Danny, we must get up now.’ I pushed away his arm.

‘Oh Pickle, few more minutes —’

‘Wouldn’t want to get caught in traffic. Come on.’

His grunt sounded as though it came from a potbelly pig with a whole cabbage stuffed in its mouth. I reluctantly climbed out of bed and enjoyed a quick cool shower to energise my weary body. I didn’t want to go anywhere. I longed to stay behind and have this place to myself. I don’t mind staying behind, Danny. You go. Go and do whatever you need to do and then come back to me, but only if you have to. I slept for four hours last night. That was all the tablet and my sadness allowed me. I felt rougher when waking than before I drifted into a dreamless darkness. Doing my best to think good thoughts, I forced myself to believe it was the fresh new start both Danny and I needed. Girl, you’re a fool, aren’t you? What’s wrong with a bit of positive thinking?

After dressing into comfy shorts, vest top and a jersey for the early morning chill, I gathered all my belongings and placed them in the hallway near the front door. With a steaming mug of strong coffee, I sat on the balcony and lost myself in the perfection below. The calm ocean gently rippled onto the beach, spreading itself amongst the black rocks, making them shine, sparkle. The sun glowed cherry red and exposed itself, throbbing, with a last morning kiss on the brightening horizon. Such still air only faintly filled my lungs with salt smells. The sound of playful barking made me watch two unusually patchy Great Danes pouncing gangly all over each other. So carefree and happy, I longed to be one. Absorbing every millimetre of view from over that balcony, I stained it to my memory. I felt sad knowing such a view would be lost the moment we hit the N3 freeway. The only view in Jo’burg would be of concrete and chlorinated water.

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