It’s over quite suddenly.
His dusty kitbag sits on the quay, before he hoists it with an awkward smile and melts into the crowded market-place.
He feels he’s worked his passage; she feels used.
After a restless night, she cruises nervously into the river lock alone. The floating bollards shriek into movement as the water surges beneath the boat. With one hand on the rope, one on the throttle and a knee steadying the tiller, she holds her breath, trembling, as the lock slowly fills.
Ten minutes later she’s chugging upstream, a grin plastered to her face.
She’s good to go.
Negotiating a lock on your own is not easy; not impossible, but certainly not easy. A bit like life, I guess, and I’m one who should know. Thanks once again to Rochelle. I say it every week, but last week I stood in awe of her diplomacy and self-control. A truly stellar performance from the esteemed leader/moderator of Friday Fictioneers.