This was my first holiday romance. I had gone on holiday with my closest friend, staying in Tuscany with her flatmate and dozens of his friends. We were picked up at the airport by a few of the dozens. All Italian men. They apologised in the car for the lack of women, and questioned whether we would be able to cope with the amount of testosterone in the house. My friend and I giggled and did not complain. When we arrived , there was something in the air. It wasn’t the sliding brain cells from the meandering hills we had just driven through. No. It was the smell of the heated wind. The stars that seemed to have been edited as if one had swallowed thousands.
All of these conditions seemed to foreshadow something unexpectedly beautiful.
As we stumbled into the dim lit Tuscan house, there he was. One of the dozen. Standing in just a towel. We acknowledged each other with a grin and as I walked past him I felt his eyes staring at every pore, every crease and freckle of my body. It was an examination.
When I had sorted myself out, placed my bags in the room I clipped my hair back and exposed my shoulder.
I breathed in and sauntered to the entrance again.
He had gone.
So I breathed out.
The rest of the holiday I couldnt stop thinking about him and his towel.
A few days passed and then finally he appeared again. I acted coy and pretended not to look. I jumped in the pool as he came down to sit next to me so it wouldn’t be evident that I was shivering, despite the heat.
When the light from the sun dimmed, the magnified stars appeared and the heated wind rushed around my legs, I felt him constantly close. Music came on and I was trying to ignore our proximity to each other.
But the tension became too much and he finally grabbed my hand firmly and as the Aperol slid down my throat I grabbed back. He placed his lips on mine and he hoovered me up, breathing in my dust. I wanted to be his and we escaped from the stars as he rushed me into the house, destroying flowers and furniture alike as we tried to find a place.
He whispered to me that ‘he had wanted to touch me since he saw me stumble in through the doors’. I shivered again.
We consumed one another for one beautiful night.
For a day after I did not shower. A way of making it real. Or to smell the visceral elixir that is the male body. I drank that potion up on the plane as I said goodbye to the meandering hills that did more than shake my brain cells.