35 years and some days ago I was married.
We had travelled first to Venice in our early 20’s. I am there again, but this year I am all grown up.
It could have been entirely different.
We planned our anniversary trip months ago, we decided on the venue and where to stay. It was locked in the diary and was not to be disturbed, except he had forgotten to collect his one and only passport and that meant no flying, no Venice and no celebrations. There was not a lot to say as he stumbled through the telling of this disaster.
Saturday morning came and I was heading to Heathrow alone thinking how I would spend my time in Venice. Acceptance was the best choice I could make and besides who would waste a trip to Venice? Not me.
I was going to write, I mean really write with a pen – a proper, beautiful pen with a nib to make ideas blossom and words flow. I was going to sit in “our” magnificent surroundings and make my journal happen. I thought fondly of my father who never went anywhere without his Parker pen, I reflected on my first, a gift for my 21st birthday and I felt teary when I remembered it was the same pen we used to sign our marriage certificate those 35 years ago. “Stuff” gets in the way of what we want sometimes and I am old enough to understand we must be flexible, work with what we have and enjoy every moment. Venice was a gift, a sojourn of privilege and I was not going to let it escape me.
I arrived at our hotel; one of the most beautiful in the world, ensconced myself on the piano nobile floor and with a celebratory prosecco, started writing. I was recently given the Ingenuity Lacquered Pearl from Parker – I cannot wax lyrical enough about this beauty. It is feminine and elegant, a classic that is right at home in my handbag or on my desk. When I write I believe the pen makes all the difference, especially the nib. If the pen flows, so do my words. There is something so very calming when we write by hand and it is all too rare an experience. I know it shouldn’t change anything, but for me it does. The scene and the tools can be the make or break when it comes to getting my words down.
I was in the right place at the right time with the right pen; the computer and the click-clack of sterile keys were forgotten and the pages filled up. My hand and fingers felt rusty to start, my pen grip tentative but as time and the prosecco kicked in, there was no holding back. The art of writing is never lost; it simply requires practice.
Lost in the writing, I was eventually pulled from my reverie by a persistent text.
“I have my passport and I am on the next plane out – See you for dinner.” Not possible. Yes, possible.
If you know him, like I know him, it was not entirely surprising. He managed to pull that rabbit out of the hat, to perform the impossible and to arrive for dinner. He used every contact he had to open up the embassy and retrieve his passport – no small feat in a town like London.
Venice was an eventful 35; we made it together, a memorable celebration and a promise to return. Thousands of words grace the pages of my journal, every last sentiment detailed; who knows what my recall may be like in another 35 years.
The art of writing is something I treasure. xv
(i can’t look further that the Ingenuity – seriously a dream to write with – that’s what i’m giving)
The Art Of Writing
Thank you Parker and ShopStyle for sponsoring “The Art Of Writing”.