Posted by: smithdavid | May 19, 2013

This World was Never Meant

The very last of the light is draining from the sky as we climb out of Nicky & Tara’s red camper. The Rossnowlagh car park is deserted and out beyond there is no oceanic roar, just the rustle of six inch wavelets turning onto the sand and withdrawing.

‘We may as well,’ says Nicky as we look at the open doors of the Surfer’s Bar.

the very last of the daylight...

the very last of the daylight…

We walk in past the deserted alcoves, past the makeshift stage where last night a microphone and speakers were set up and from where a yonug barman sent out the clearest notes from his guitar and voice.

All the way at the back, beside the counter, sit the only three customers.

‘May as well stay for one…’ I say and then I see last night’s singer behind the bar. ‘You wouldn’t sing for us again?’ I say to him.

Soon he has come out from behind the bar and is on a high stool, guitar on thigh, tuning. ‘Sh*te,’ he says after a while, then runs back behind the bar and pulls the tap back up on an overflowing pint.

‘What do ye wanna hear?’ he says once he’s back.

‘Vincent, Don McLean…’ I say, remembering how well he played it last night. And so he starts. ‘Starry, starry night…‘ His voice is full and pure  without the microphone and the room seems small.  ‘This world was never meant for one as beautiful as you…‘ I remember now Claude playing this song on her IPod in Taormina, Sicily, almost a year ago to the day as we waited in the cool air for dawn to come. This world was never meant – it’s my favourite line, she said. How you suffered for your sanity, is mine, I told her.

‘What’s your name?’ Tara asks our singer after six pairs of hands have clapped when he finished.

‘Diarmuid McGee, watch out for it…’ he says.

‘Oh, we will,’ I say.

It’s all over too soon and we’re outside Nicky and Tara’s camper. But it does not seem right for the night to end now.

‘Let’s skate!’ says Nicky. Soon I’m on Tara’s board, gliding down past the entrance to the Sandhouse, surflike. Nicky is ahead of me, crouched down, one knee almost on the board, like he’s in a barrel and he’s exacting every last inch from it. Perhaps, in a way, this is exactly where he is.

We’re laughing like kids again; like drunken students who think they are the first  to think of skateboarding in the middle of the night; like we laughed when we tried to surf the Rossnowlagh ripples earlier.

the red camper...

the red camper…

I’m thinking the buzz from the beer is adding to the elation of this moment and on some level I wish my head was clearer.

But I think of you again, of how you said your only regret was not having more fun and I crouch down low on Tara’s board, chasing Nicky’s wake, mind now on nothing else.

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