Love Story: Page 5

Love-Story-Page-5.2Page 5

June 2000 – Peggy’s Cove, Nova Scotia

I flew home to my maritime teenage microcosm. Track meets, school dances, the creative avoidance of math homework, and the endless search for a ride, somewhere, anywhere. My sister finished the school year in Germany and booked a flight for June, just as Achim’s time in Goose Bay wrapped up. Given the close distance (966 km by air, welcome to Canada!), she invited him to visit us in Nova Scotia. He would arrive three days before she did.

It was my mother, then three-year-old brother and myself, but I met him at the terminal. I greeted him as was customary in the indiscriminately flirtatious world of the North American 16 year old: with a big, fat bear hug. This makes me laugh now, knowing the polite one-armed hugs and air kisses passed around here in Germany. Much later, he told me how startled but charmed he was to be greeted so warmly by a beautiful girl.

But as far as I knew, I was just his friend’s peripheral little sister. Which was good, because it meant that around him, I was blessedly free from the pressure to be anything other than that. I didn’t deliberate over my clothes or hair the way I usually did, or my words, or anything else required by The Adolescent Theatre of Coolness. I was just myself, for better and, yep, for worse.

On the drive home from the airport, we stopped at Peggy’s Cove. With waves that barrel into the coastline and disintegrate, freezing in the air like a billion glass beads before shattering back into the sea, Peggy’s Cove is honestly mesmerizing. And as those billions of glass beads caught rainbow after rainbow, and the cool wind kissed our cheeks pink, inexplicably and wordlessly, Achim and I fell into a game.

My mom and brother faded into the sideline. We leaped, one after the other over the cracked loaves of worn white granite. He followed me, I followed him. He followed me, I followed him. Testing each other with faster footsteps and bigger chasms to avoid, the game went on and on. I felt giddy. I was flying, and when I caught his eye, I saw the same feeling reflected in his face. We were flying together.

Page 5/15. Ooh, I am seeing that these are going to get harder as they get closer in time and less ephemeral! I didn’t expect to, but I feel a little shy… 🙂 In case you missed this post, I’ll be writing and illustrating our story over the course of 30 days. It’s a true story that spans 17 years. You can expect new “pages” posted every second day, from September 22-October 21.


p.s. Page 1Page 2, Page 3, and Page 4, if you’ve just started reading. 🙂

6 thoughts on “Love Story: Page 5

  1. Dakota Nyght

    Oh Elena… these pages and your story are so beautiful. I really hope you’d consider publishing it as a whole (even if you do a little creative retelling to obscure personal details later on). I have a book – Griffin and Sabine, which is one of my all time favorites. It’s no longer in print in the original format (it’s an epistolary story, and you read letters and postcards that Griffin and Sabine sent back and forth) but it’s a breathtaking story – both for the art and the writing. Your story here puts me in mind of it, and your illustrations and writing are the same amazing caliber.

    1. Elena

      Thank yo so much for your lovely vote of confidence, Dakota! I actually did sort of “self publish it”, i mean, i made it into a book, for Christmas for Achim. I made a copy for each of the kids, and a couple extras too, just for who knows what. You never know. Griffin and Sabine sounds lovely, I’m going to look it up.

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