whispered love
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August 30th 2006: End of Summer

I walked into school in the morning, the sunlight sparkling on the dew, the blue sky interspersed with large white clouds. It's a lovely route through open countryside. Although term doesn't start until next week, the long vacation is coming to an end, and I was in to meet a new teacher who I am mentoring.

Then up to my form room, with gathered dust from the past two months, silent and still and almost haunted - where usually there's laughter from boys and girls. A classroom without children is like a graveyard - it's like a church without God.

Home again, and Rebekah's just got in from leading a drum course at a neighbouring church. She did some work on assignments due in next week, then we went up to the tennis courts in the late afternoon sun. I was feeling casual and netted too many shots. She beat me 8-6. It didn't matter. The game is a sort of pretext for doing things together.

Then, as we strolled homewards across the field Rebekah spotted Pete, who was practising his chipping. Bex sauntered home and I sat in the grass as Peter carried on. Chip-putt-chip-putt, the shadows lengthening now, the skies completely cloudless. We imagined it was the British Open. Every shot counted. Ernie Els was level with him.

Two colourful hot air balloons approached from behind a cedar tree, the evening cooling, the sun now almost gone. There was a feeling of departure, of the end of summer. Those long warm days are nearly over. Next week a new school year and a new class. It's almost time.


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