Friday, 1 March 2013

What's Two Days Between Friends...?

Two days isn't a lot, is it? A flash in the pan of life, even for us mortals who exist for fairly short periods, two days isn't much. It's loose change in the pocket of a lifetime.

So how come February seems to be such a short month? How come, while only 48 hours exist between it and the likes of April and June, it feels as if we're cheated by the speed with which February comes and goes? Even more so when it's sandwiched between the mighty January and March, who clutch their extra days tightly lest an errant wind snatch them away.

Is February the runt of the litter? Last one out so the rest took all the meat? Does it have breathing problems and always get pushed to the back at feeding time?

Or, is it the black sheep? Getting into trouble and blaming its siblings? Small and sweet looking, so you'd never do that, would you Feb? Didn't think so.

We had our own February. Well, the month belongs to everyone, of course, but in here, in the depths of the asylum, February was alive, Johnny Five. And, most probably, holding out for a hero - much like all of us.

February. Small, red-headed, dimpled. Petite, you'd call her. She only came out of her shell during this particular four week month. Otherwise she barely spoke and remained huddled down within herself, as if her body had gone walkabout and her shadow was keeping her seat. I don't know why she was so different when January waved goodbye. Perhaps she was sympathetic to the month's plight. Maybe she identified with the baby of the year.

But, come the dawn of the second month, her body returned and February bore fruit.

She was a minx. It has to be said. A minx. Her double entendres had entendres and her normally dark eyes sparkled. She would have the other residents fighting over her affections, literally in some cases, as she flitted and flirted about the Recreation room. And she would smile at it all.

February was flanked, permanently when she had her brief bout of blossom, by two other residents. These were quiet and unassuming usually, but, again, changed when she awoke. The one to her left (they never mixed up their positions) took it upon himself to take a name that he thought would portray himself as a beast of a man. Someone you wouldn't want to mess with. Hulk was already taken, so he chose, being a Clash of the Titans fan, Gorgon.

His associate, right was always right, didn't quite get the gist of this. As such, he couldn't understand why we all laughed when he called himself 'Zola'.

They kept their little live-wire safe from the throng of admirers and held those who might have a grievance at arm’s length. Not that grievances were common in here. We were all as sad as each other, so there was little to cause animosity really. But, unfortunately, when you have nothing, even a little popularity is as valuable as a decent meal or warm fire. Or Rolex or winning lottery ticket, for that matter.

It all livened up a month lost after January’s New Year kick-off. As is the norm for this place we don’t call home, the fleeting burst of colour paled quickly. February faded, to be replaced by Anna, red-headed, dimpled, and small in every sense of the word.

Gorgon became Gerald. Gerald liked to play cards with an invisible deck, but never won a hand. Zola morphed into Brian. Brian liked to beat Gerald at cards.

Two days. It’s not much, is it? Why does it feel like a lifetime?


  1. That was a fascinating read! Will be browsing through more.

    1. Thank you very much Debbie. I'm so glad you enjoyed it!

  2. Hi Shaun. There seems to be a recent theme in your writing of time passing quickly. When I was a child, summer lasted forever and February was only snow. Now the days gallop by, regardless of season.
    What's Two Days... is an interesting different way of looking at it.
    Well written, wonderful piece.
    louise3anne twitter