So much to say about this one, but here’s the photo and story first, in case you want to skip the expo!
The Fourth Third
Dad would call it an inauspicious entryway. A narrow staircase ascended between dirty red walls into darkness above. Clutter covered half the bottom step. It was a long way from the ranch back home.
But if all went well, this was home now, and its occupants like a new family. I make free adults from children, the university motto began. Faye felt so old to be here, and yet so green to be just beginning. The others were all second years – her guides and chaperones.
A light came on and she recognised Grace from zoom calls.
“Our D’Artagnan has arrived!”
I glimpsed at today’s photo on my phone over breakfast this morning and was reminded of the old university theatre where I spent so many hours of my undergraduate years. I don’t know why, it doesn’t look like the theatre, there was something in the feel of the photo. Anyway, the theatre was exactly like that. Inauspicious. Nothing to suggest upon arrival there that it would be the location I would miss more than the rest combined, when I left Cambridge 3 years later. Nothing to suggest it would be where I found my husband, my best friend and so much of myself in the intervening years.
So I started writing that story, but it turned into this story, set in another country, in a residence not a theatre, and with a lead who is definitely not me. Two things remain, however, of me and the theatre. First, the word ‘inauspicious’, which my best friend and I were just using yesterday to reminisce about our arrival there, and second, the fourth third. Like the musketeers, I was, for a while back then, part of a famous three-some, with 4 members.