Photo of last night’s Blood Moon taken by Side Antalya Turkey on Facebook
(July 27, 2018)
Taking a right turn from the highway, Tim steered the car into a dust road that meandered towards the coast. After parking at a dead end in the middle of nowhere, he unloaded his camera bags and tripod. Carrying the picnic basket, I followed him to the top of a hill, facing the sea. Away from traffic and city lights, the night sky resembled a star-studded umbrella in complete darkness. The cicadas sang as we waited for the moon to appear, and the eclipse due in a couple of hours.
“What’s special about a lunar eclipse?” I asked.
“The moon plays hide and seek with us.”
“And a blood moon?”
“It happens a few times a year. This one is rare because it will be one of the longest. Instead of going dark, she becomes red. I believe it carries a message for the blood spilled on earth.”
“You’re making this up,” I chuckled and sipped the red wine.
“I am, but I it could be true. Eclipses always bring out the truth, like your mood today.”
“What mood?” I asked, knowing he was right.
“You’re hiding something, playing games with me.”
I lit a cigarette, inhaled and exhaled the smoke. I looked at his face in the moonlight and stared into his eyes.
“Tim, you know, this is not right. I’m too old for you.”
“You love me, don’t you?”
“Of course, I do, but that doesn’t change anything. A fact is a fact. This won’t work.”
“You’ve been with an older man before. Did that work?”
“It didn’t, but this has nothing to do with that.”
“You’re biased. If this relationship were between a woman and a man ten years older than her, you wouldn’t question it.”
“Then, you’re contradicting yourself,” he said, pouring more wine into my glass.
“Maybe.” I raked my fingers through his sun-streaked hair and touched his face. “I’m scared. This might lead to a heartache I won’t be able to cope with. They get worse as one gets older.”
“I won’t break your heart. I promise. I’ve been with younger women, some around my age, but none of those relationships worked. It has nothing to do with age. I’ve never loved anyone like you. Why won’t you accept that?” He held my chin and kissed me, and wrapped me in his arms.
I stroked his back, clinging to his big frame. Opening my eyes, I saw a shade of darkness on the outer edge of the moon. “Quick, it’s happening now.”
I watched him taking pictures behind his camera. He swapped lenses, and shot from different angles, as the moon went dark. Then, as if through magic, a rosy colour appeared from its edge, and gradually covered the entire sphere, frame by frame, until it became a red ball flaunting its beauty in the night sky.
I wondered whether the rosy colour hinted at a good omen or a bloodbath for my future disappointments, disillusionments. There was only one way to find out.
After one hour and forty-three minutes, the duration of the eclipse, everything went back to normal. Normal as we know it. The full moon slowly returned to its familiar appearance of a white sphere, as though nothing had happened. It was an illusion. Something had happened, but it would only be revealed in time.