SWEAT BLINDED HIM as Jack pumped up the seven-percent gradient. Hilda was already at the top, standing next to her bicycle. She grinned at him as he stopped on the level top. His heart pumped from more than the exertion as he took in her tall, Viking figure, the high cheekbones, anthracite skin, and the fine, black hair protruding from her helmet in a ponytail. Continue reading

Sea story: A commuter’s choice: gas or cobblestones? (1987)

The cold, light drizzle, like a heavy mist, envelops the van as it pulls from the curb outside the Banco di Roma below our apartment building. In the rear window, we can see the seven blond heads bobbing in their seats as the scuolabus carries them off for another day at the American school, 33 km north of town. I turn to Carol, and give her a hug and a kiss. Continue reading