Bordeaux Bay

Bordeaux Bay
Bordeaux Bay by Guernsey-based artist Tony Taylor

Tuesday, 25 August 2015


Sitting in my living room, during the wettest August for years, watching rain bouncing off the garden table and chairs where I'd love to be seated, sipping ice-cold Prosecco and enjoying the sun's warmth, I feel unreasonably resentful.

We have a relatively easy life here in Guernsey, protected from many of the woes of the UK and Europe, although you wouldn't think it, listening to some of our local dullards with their constant grousing and negativity.

There is much to be thankful for, but, at times to my dismay, I find that I too slip into that gloomy Guernsey mindset and have to work hard to snap out of it.

It was probably on one such dismal day a few years back that I wrote this grim little archive piece.   


That morning Arnold took a tumble getting out of bed: a dizzy spell. He’d been having them for a while but most days he managed to sit down before he collapsed. 
Today wasn’t one of those days.
He sat on the carpet where he’d landed and gathered his wits. He shook his head to clear it and, for the first time, heard the fly.
It was buzzing somewhere in the room and Arnold thought it was the loudest fly he’d ever encountered.
Arnold took paracetamol and phoned in sick. He sat on the sofa and shivered. The wallpaper was alive. Its pattern of bamboo shoots appeared to be dancing some sort of mad fandango.

The light, too, was different. A yellowish tinge filled the room like polluted water.
He heard the fly again but couldn’t see it anywhere. The frantic noise it made seemed louder than before.
Arnold’s shoulder ached from his fall and he felt listless.
He dozed off and when he woke the fly was buzzing again, noisily, and the room vibrated with the sound.
It was like an enormous, threatening machine. The walls of Arnold's room seemed to shimmer and he felt the floor tilt alarmingly.
All day Arnold lay on the sofa, curled like a foetus. The more furiously the fly buzzed, the more Arnold's energy drained away.
His eyes scanned the yellow room but he couldn’t see the fly anywhere. He thought it must be invisible and began to feel invisible himself.
Eventually the buzzing reached a crescendo and Arnold’s head felt as though it would explode.
Then it did.

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