Thick candles burning low around the spa. They are flesh pink, gleaming pearls, arranged in clusters of soft light along the marble counters. Imitation gold taps the shape of dolphins. Nostalgia radio wails on, forlorn, strangely discordant among misty mirrors and shimmering tiles. It is late morning, the sky, bruised with smog, glows apricot, flecked with lilac. And the vast curved window, a shining echo of the thirties, looks out across the treetops - which screen the red roofs of rows of houses - to the bay.
The jets throb and rush through the water so the tub is filled with a cloud of pinkish bubbles. An empty champagne bottle, a half-empty flute. A golden cockle shell holds the butts and ashes of two cigarettes, and the heavy crystal lighter has fallen onto the floor, cracking the marble. One pale salmon towel neatly folded on an overhead rack. The door to the sauna is open, steam is pouring out, and two soggy peachy towels lie abandoned in a heap.
is lying in the spa
a strawberry blonde
she is thirty-two