I always loved the lighthouse on the hill. When I was tiny, mum and I would stand at the bottom of the garden and wave at the lighthouse keepers in the lantern at the top. The flashes were how I learned to count. As teenager, I'd sit and watch the strobing light, dreaming of life off the island instead of studying. I almost forgot about the lighthouse when I went to the mainland for university and then work, but fell in love again on my rare visits home. After my parents died and life in the city palled, I put my London flat on the market and came back to decide what to do next. The lighthouse had fallen into darkness. I walked up to the headland and found the gate locked and an estate agent's sign drooping from the window. Four years and countless hours of work later, the lantern room is my office and I can see my childhood home down in the valley. I wave at the child in the garden, and she waves back.
Image: Old Point Loma Light Station, San Diego; Creator: Frank Schulenburg; Copyright: CC BY-SA 4.0
Writing short fiction, monologues and plays