It’s cold and pitiful outside. I’m home with just The Egg for company. The Egg is good company at the best of times but this is the worst of times and so The Egg is no good to me. I put the heater on. Let’s play a game Egg, we’ll pretend we’re on the Caribbean coast, you and me on deckchairs with pina coladas and the blood red setting sun.
The Egg says nothing. I expected as much.
Dinner is its usual mismatched affair. Breakfast food does nicely for the last meal of the day, the way I figure it having breakfast now will give me a head start on tomorrow.
What now? Bath time? Perhaps. I paint my nails obsidian black and turn the music up to cover the sounds of suburban doom escaping from next door.
Fill up the bath. Hot Hot Hot baby. I like to attain the colour likened to well cooked lobster. For some reason I find simmering inside my own skin quite relaxing. Must be the pace my brain slows to when it’s on its way to being boiled.
Steam is filling the bathroom. If I squint enough it’s no longer my rejected from the seventies bathroom but a hot springs rock pool in the snows of Mt Fuji. Squinting so hard is giving me a headache so I relax it to ‘hot springs somewhere crap’.
One toe in. Hot. Too hot. I undress my way to the Purgatorial state achieved when the room is freezing but the bath water is scalding. Bubbles and bubbles and bubbles piling up in cloud banks at the corners of the bath. Lacking a rubber duck for company I make do with a plastic skull. I feel a Shakespeare moment coming up. I wonder what the bard would think of his words slipping from the lips of an undressed lunatic with burning toes and tangled hair? Hmm. Perhaps he would write a play about an unstable duchess presiding over the rotting remains of a once glorious kingdom. Her palace crumbling and ransacked, over run with peacocks and tropical plants, courtesans arrayed in crumpled heaps on bear skin rugs weeping one last hurrah for The (bitter) End.
Wincing from the burning I slide feet first into the bath; which sounds much nicer than what really happened, as the bath is actually quite small, so I less slid and more concertinaed into an accordion and inverted my folded self into the bath tub which now that you mention it actually looks like an ice cream bucket. No matter. For now it’s not a bath it’s a flooded underground cave with impossibly slender stalactites and wizened catfish making slow navigations in the eternal darkness.
Slowly, slowly I peel away from myself. Thoughts let slip from their moorings like boats dragged out on a fast current. Not long now and I’ll be out past the breakers, onto the open sea. The rock will recede until all that’s left is my box of enamel treading the thin line between sky and sea.