The air was crisp enough to see a hint of breath hanging in front of me, the earth looking fresh after the cleansing rainfall it endured the night before. Book in hand, bundled in my favorite sweatshirt, I stepped, slipper-footed, onto the cold landing outside my kitchen door and proceeded down the steps to the patio. The flock of wild, lime green parrots that live somewhere nearby passed overhead, shrieking in a language I didn’t understand but loved to listen to, while the personal-space challenged Labrador I’d come to love tip-toed beside me, matching my stride step for step. A beautiful winter morning in San Diego. Or so I thought...
“Somebody’s up bright and early.”
Eh? The sudden interruption forced my attention from the lush patio furniture beckoning me and to the corner of the yard.
I extinguished a heavy sigh. “Good morning, Nigel.”
“Good morning, love. What brings outside on such a crisp morning?”
“Oh...you know, just thought I’d get in a little reading before the girls woke up.” I raised my copy of Miss Peregrine’s for evidence, but quickly tucked it back into the safety of my arms. The paper used for the printing of this book was particularly high quality. If Nigel came within a foot of a delicacy like that, I’d find myself on Amazon ordering a replacement book for Anita.
“Well, isn’t that a grand idea,” he said, elongating his pronunciation of the word grand in case I’d forgotten he was English. He dropped his head to the ground, taking one last nibble of dew-ridden grass, before approaching me with a loping gate Heidi Klum would kill for. “What else have you on your schedule for today?”
I settled Indian-style into the corner of the wicker couch, tucking the red throw pillow on my lap and thought about the day that lie ahead. Groceries, a little laundry, date night with my husband...
“Oh,” I groaned, suddenly remembering the task I’d unwillingly been assigned. “My friend Cherie tagged me with this meme a couple of weeks ago. I hate those things but...you know, I love her to bits so I guess I have to do it.”
“You’re not fond of the memes then?”
I glanced up at him, his beady eyes intent on me. “No,” I said. “They’re too...dogmatic for my taste.”
“Well that’s a shame,” he said, shooing the dog away with a gentle kick of his hind hoof. Chance, the wonder mutt with Bambi eyes, whimpered before venturing into the depths of the yard in search of his own grass to chew. “Say, I’ve got a brilliant idea,” Nigel said in a surprisingly chipper tone. “Why don’t you let me take care of the meme? I’m quite sure I’d do a smashing job–given my English heritage and propensity for wooing lady-folk.” I had a momentary flashback to the panty meme last summer and felt my cheeks flush. “Cherie wouldn’t mind, would she? As I recall she was quite fond of me...”
My teeth sunk into my bottom lip, as I considered the possible ramifications of such an agreement. I’m in the middle of submissions with my book, trying to present myself as a serious, professional writer–if Nigel took the reigns, what would I be subjecting myself and my caree–
“Sure!” I agreed, broad smile threatening to rip through my skin. “You know my Gmail password, right?”
“Indeed, I do,” he said behind an unsettling smirk. “Indeed I do.”
And now...Nigel’s meme:
1. What is your dream vacation? It’s quite simple really. An open field with rich, decadent grasses that I could graze on for days. Somewhere in the countryside–perhaps outside of Darlington or Middlesborough...though if I’m dreaming I should say I’d prefer the grasses in Ireland. Unfortunately the Irish are a very daft audience, so I should stick to my homeland. Something befitting a nobleman like myself.
2. Are you spontaneous or do you like to plan ahead?
Spontaneity is for the lower-classes. These suits don’t iron themselves, you know...
3. Tell us one thing you want to do but don’t dare to do.
Oh heavens, I think I should love to run nude through the streets, kicking up my hooves and wiggling my dingly danglies, but a gentleman would never do such a thing.
4. What’s your biggest phobia?
That the Beckham’s should split. David and Victoria are quite possibly the most beautiful, well-groomed humans on the planet. If their union were ever to dissolve, I fear it would be the end of a fairytale I've only begun to enjoy reading about.
5. If you were stranded on a desert island, what 3 things would you want with you (not including your laptop, or family).
Well now...you are a naughty thing for asking such a question, aren’t you? I suppose I’d start with an endless supply of 24 lb. bond paper. Not only does it taste like a tiny slice of Heaven on Earth, but it keeps my nethers running in a timely fashion. Secondly, I dare say I’d bring along Daisy. She’s not the most elegant of my admirers,but she’s quite entertaining when she’s had a few drinks. If we’re on a deserted island, I might as well cut loose, right? Lastly, I would bring my manicure kit. Without my regularly scheduled spa visits, I fear I might look a bit ghastly if I didn’t at least maintain my hooves. Can you imagine...the horror of a chipped nail!
6. Name three blessings in your life.
The neighbor’s clothesline
My ability to make Americans feel inferior simply by speaking in my native brogue
My ass in a thong
7. What was your nickname in high school?
Dearest, I’m a goat. I skipped high school and went straight to university. There I was known only as, The Great Ramming Horn.
8. If you could meet the President of the United States, what would you say to him? Where do you get your suits?
9. If you could be any literary character for a day, who would you be?
Bella Swan, for obvious reasons.
10. What is your favorite quote?
“Whenever I watch TV and see those poor starving kids all over the world, I can't help but cry. I mean I'd love to be skinny like that but not with all those flies and death and stuff.” - Mariah Carey. She’s such a visionary...
As I understand, meme rules dictate I should pass this task along to seven other bloggers, however, I cannot see how anyone could possibly improve upon my response so I think we shall consider this memo officially retired. Why mess with a good thing, after all.
Until next time, my beloved fan club.