We were living on the island of #5 Waldo House within the island of London NW10 within the island of the UK. We were snuggling at the heart of Russian Doll islands.
Most of the time, we didn’t need to go anywhere or see anyone. We were doing small yet big things in our Queendom.
Out of the blue, one of us suddenly had an itch for the external world and we were doing what we used to call “going on an adventure”. Which meant, exploring the neighbourhood hunting for details that we had never noticed before.
We ended up walking the same patterns over and over again, but it was a forever renewed joy. There was a certain street that we used to call “New York” because it was broad and full of brick warehouses. It was one of our favourite destinations, for want of the real Big Apple which we never made together.
Sometimes we would get lost in a new bit of our playground and make an extraordinary discovery: an arty cinema, a pond with stagnant waters, an empty building, a park as wild as a forest.
She was taking tons of pictures with her sense of detail and her obsession for industrial and padlocks. She would always spot the thing no one would ever see with her digital eye. I liked that ability in her. I was making the stories.
It is during these short urban adventures that we felt the most in tune. We would forget all the uncertainties and question marks of our story to focus on the common rhythm of our heartbeats. As we were observing our surroundings, embracing our so familiar environment, we had the similar goal that we were desperately lacking the rest of the time.
We finally were in the same space-time.
On the way back home we would play dumb or I would teach her dance steps which she was clumsily copying and we would laugh our head off.
There was no adventure, exploration or common rhythm of our heartbeats outside our island, though. Any attempt I did to make us swim away from it and reach the mainland turned into traumatising fights.
I therefore had to leave to the mainland alone.