I am twelve years away from the steep rim of the volcano you stand on: twelve years away from the wind that makes waves on the pool of crystal water below. Your friends are gathered around you. You in the centre of attention, before you were mine. One arm is raised to shade your eyes, the other holding the strap of your bag on your shoulder, the way I do now. A mannerism passed down from mother to daughter. I can nearly smell the unsullied air that blows around your head. Undoing your hairstyle.

I am nine years away from you now. The thought of me does not occur as you sit on that restful chair. Your curly, shoulder length hair is a waterfall cascading over the bright, floral pattern of your Chinese dress. Behind you there is a window. Outside I can distinguish the bitter looking sea and further than that a beach. I can just see the vague outline of a little town, which is covered in a thick fog. Inside the room looks warm and relaxed. I can tell you weren’t expecting a photo. Your eyes are looking into the distance behind the camera; your mouth is open as if you were about to say something.

Six years away: you sit on a cool, stone floor, made cosier by a couple of colourful, patterned, oriental rugs. Before you is a medley of breads and spices that makes my mouth water at the sight of them. Your friends sit on either side of you, staring up at the camera. Was this when you where in Egypt? Your face looks hassle-free and as gentle as a lamb; so unlike the stressed and tired look you depict so well. The chaotic life you live now. You wear a bold, blue blouse that goes well with your daring personality.

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Now I am five years away from you. You stand at the edge of a waterfall, peering down into the bottomless pool of water below. In front of you are the rolling hills that carry on ceaselessly, far into the distance like the uneven surface of a duvet. The light blue sky covers them as if it were a blanket made out of soft cloud. You are sporting a vibrant yellow coat and jeans. Perhaps the coat serves as a token of your adolescence. As the mischievous water falls it pummels the water beneath as it lands: adding a splash of white to the endless depth of the blue.

Two years on and I am three years away from you. Sitting on a stone slab with your friends, grouped around a sign pointing to London and Rome. You sit in the rays of the sun. I can feel the same slight breeze, that blows your hair about, running up my arms and to the back of my neck. A huge smile is spread across your face as if you where a clown in a circus. I can almost see the twinkle in your eye. I wonder what made you smile so much that day? I notice that three of your friends sit together but you sit slightly apart. Your confidence shows as evidently as black ink on a white page. The picture-perfect blue sky serves as a beautiful backdrop to a happy scene.


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