The Valley of Lesbos


Carvel Catherway

Publisher: Chaucer

Copyright 2011


The view at twenty thousand feet was pretty much what she supposed a view at twenty thousand feet should be. It was worthy of some attention but frankly didn’t interest her that much. It was all she could do to fight back the tears that sprang unbidden or suppress the shaking that took over her hands. She looked at the view now because so doing meant turning to face the little square of Plexiglas; her fellow passengers then seeing only her thick blonde hair, not the reddening of her eyes nor the rolling tears.

And it was worth a look. At that altitude the State of California might have been reduced to an exact model on which even the most substantial topographical features were rendered in miniature: the expense of scrub-strewn desert, stretches of thin brush and the occasional green serrations of the vineyards all set out below in exquisite detail.

The plane made a course correction that lined it up ready for the crowded west-coast air corridors and the horizon swung until the glistening ocean filled the window completely; the reflected sun so bright as to make the woman blink and screw up her eyes. Seen from a height that made the world look less than real even the mighty Pacific was a Lilliputian pond edged by a thin frill of white surf.

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