The Island

It was the summer of 1988 and I was about to start third grade when I first opened the book and began my romance with a tiny island in Canada. I devoured the book with my eyes, my imagination running wild, while my legs dangled off the side of my twin bed. I was there. It was pure bliss and the beginning of my fascination with romance. The sort that unfolds slowly. Two people meet and there’s friction. Tension mounts, wits are brandished, misunderstandings and dancing occur. Tempers fly along with who knows what matter of bric-a-brac until finally, finally there’s a happy ending. The names were reverent to me. I whispered them like a prayer. Anne and Gilbert. Jane and Darcy. Beatrice and Benedick. It starts out rocky and ends with rings and babies, and I would later come to understand, some really hot sex. Man would it be a disappointment if Gilbert was short on stamina, or Darcy was a jackhammer. Heaven forbid if Benedick was short on – well (wiggles eyebrows and chews on a cigar like a novice Marx Brother, until I spit it out like a rookie). But these are the thoughts of a 31 year old who just went on a miserable date with a guy who chews tobacco and was a bit dark in the teeth. It turns out. Not quite the sweeping romance I had hoped for when I was a plucky kid. 

Anne of Green Gables was my first love story. Of all the characters, what I fell in love with the most though was Prince Edward Island. There I was, my hair wrapped in braided pigtails for the entire summer because of my love of the book, with a promise made to myself. I would go to the island, live there, and find out about love. As soon as I finished college. And got a job. And moved out of the house to live in the city for a few years. Got a promotion, a credit card, a savings account, a new car, some furniture, a few one night stands, a relationship with an older man, a relationship with a younger man, a few unfortunate haircuts, a couple of bridesmaid gowns, and a good dose of heartache and cock-ups. And a man named Henry. Ah. Henry. 

Which brings me to today.  Today I am standing on the precipice of adventure. Kate Bush and Don Quixote songs and sweeping sagas play out in my mind. 

Or we could just sit here and have a nice cup of tea and drag our feet about a bit first. Yes? No? To the nunnery?

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