He walked into the café and greeted me as if I had known him all his life. Then, once perched on a stool, held court whilst sipping a dubious tincture over ice. He spoke English with an accent that made every sentence sound like an indecent proposal and slipped easily between his native French, English and Khmer. After an hour he announced his departure, kissed me unexpectedly on both cheeks, and was gone.  

A few days later he arrived again at the same bar. This time he swept me into his sphere and held me, captivated. The colours of his character are like oil on water. He is a beautiful and restless fusion like the ethereal shimmerings found in the gritty earthiness of backstreet puddle . He talks only of the present and his dark,velvet curtained past hangs heavy and unmentioned. 

He is the perfect ex patriate. Louche and charming like a warm hearted petty criminal from a bad 1930s novel. It’s a small town, and the Barang community is incestuously knitted. He comes with warnings and caveats. He drinks, he gets drunk, he’s rude and he fights. That veiled past has demons that still reach out to trouble his soul. It’s too late. I see his flaws and still I’m drawn. He has a sense of fun that I need in my life and I see a good heart. 

I need colour in my world and I am not a fan of the anodyne. If I get tarred with same brush then so be it. I have a new partner in crime and like him I don’t really listen to caveats. 


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