As we take the cable car to go down to the beach of Garajau I remember another time when I stood on the high cliff looking down and he was telling me how special this place was for him and how he wanted to share it with me. By then there were no cable cars and we walked hand in hand down to the pebbled beach.
Today the sky is overcast and the sea looks like silver; back then the sun was shining and I remember looking at the turquoise sea and seeing the rocks at the bottom. Unlike many other places in Madeira they were not dark, but had a light colour, and the water looked like one of a tropical beach, the sun dancing on the surface and making it look as if a million diamonds were sparkling especially for us, to celebrate our love.
Today the atmosphere is not blue but grey; still, it’s warm and my friends put on their special shoes for walking on the pebbles, and they call for me to do the same and follow them. I wave and say I’ll be with them shortly, but then I lose myself again in the past and the sun is warm on my face and we are lying in the sun and he dares me to go for a swim. But unlike today I have no special shoes and I smile and say I’m going to get hurt, when suddenly he picks me up in his arms and slowly gets into the water and yes he has the special shoes but still it must hurt, and I laugh like crazy but try to keep still unless he loses his balance and falls…but no, he’s as solid as a rock, and when he finds the water is deep enough he lets me go; never far, and only for a moment, for as I swim he is there beside me. Holding me, kissing me passionately…then I lean against him, both of us barely moving our legs, just enough to keep us afloat, and we look up at the oddly shaped rock of Garajau –it looks like a bear I think – that we usually see from Funchal in the distance; we gaze at the blue sky and around us the water is crystal clear so we can see thousands of small fish dancing around us, as if welcoming us into their magical world, for the moment is pure magic, so perfect I would freeze time if only I could…I would stay there forever, in his arms, surrounded by the blue of the sea and the sky and the dark brown of the imposing rock. The moment is perfect and…
“Teresa! “ – My friends’ voices bring me back to the grey reality of today. “Come along, the water is fantastic!” and again I am back to the present, the perfect moment quickly fading away to the past where it belongs.
I get up and the pebbles stubbornly roll under my feet but they don’t hurt me, thanks to the shoes. As I carefully walk to the sea I smile and blow a kiss to that person who was so special to me during a happy time in my life – wherever he is, I know he has moved on as I have, but I cannot help believing that once in a while he will remember our time together as I do, and in particular those special moments at Garajau, when the world should have stopped only because it was so perfect. And I think, if only there had been a kind wizard or fairy passing by, and seeing us make such an enchantment that we’d stay there in the water forever, until the end of time.
After my daydreaming I join my friends and have a great swim. Then the three of us go to the beach terrace for a drink. As sit down and order a “poncha” I remember the words in Whitney Houston’s beautiful song “One moment in time”: “There is that one moment in time /I will feel/ I will feel eternity”.
Oh yes, we had our very special moment in time. If only for one moment, we felt eternity.