From the window I can hear the crash of the waves but I can’t quite see the ocean, and behind me my wife sleeps. She is partially uncovered by the blanket because during the night she has, as always, wrestled with our bedding and invariably victorious, she has flung aside her vanquished foe.
Or perhaps all of that is my framing, my interpretation. I am deep into the second month of what is shaping up to be a very long campaign in Russia, and at the moment it seems all I can do is think in terms of fighter and foe, winner and loser, commander and soldier. My eyes are tired, and when I rub them they feel gritty.
For a beachside holiday our location, and the weather, have not been conducive to assist in mimicking the colourful brochures thrust into our hand by a smiling saleswoman. Instead the days have been short and grey, and there is nobody about. Occasionally, though of course not at night, we can see from our balcony the bright yellow, red and blue of a sailboat painted with the logo of a better, more expensive hotel chain, but that is all.
This has worked out perfectly for me as I push further into Russia. I have captured the border Russia shares with Finland, and I am considering pressing toward St Petersburg. But my rival could have laid a trap there. His previous pathetic attack against me could have been a feint, and for all I know, darkness may descend on my troops. It is cold, and I am done with my decisions.
And behind me my wife snores.
* * *
The above piece of writing comprises part of my fragments project, some of which are available on this website. I intend to add new fragments piecemeal, not in any particular order, and as the occasion take me.