Winter wonderland

Shabbat has strong features, dark hair, and he is wearing a tuxedo when he beckons me from the other side of curtain.

I join him in a tent made of silver, walls arching toward the sky and frost-kissed branches tangling overhead. I am suddenly wearing a silver-sequined gown, glittering in the light of a thousand candles shining two by two in the periphery.

Shabbat settles a firm hand beneath my shoulder, and as the music starts we sweep into the crisp stillness of the early winter sunset.


Tropical paradise

I dressed for winter before stepping outside to pick up Shabbat. He was waiting by the bus stop, holding an overnight bag and wearing a bright, almost glowing Hawaiian shirt.

“Aren’t you cold?” I called as I walked toward him. His tanned brown skin, open to the elements, clashed with my thick, water-resistant coat.

“‘Cold’?” He stretched out his arms. “Are you kidding me? Baby, it’s sunshine and mai tais 24/7 over here!”

I looked doubtfully at the gray, packed-frost sidewalk. Then I frowned. “Are those orchids growing out of the cement?” I demanded, pointing at a short trail from the curb to his sandaled feet.

Instead of answering, Shabbat wrapped his arms around me. He smelled like coconut with a soft tang of seawater. I wanted to ask him what kept his skin so warm, but as soon as I opened my mouth he smothered me with his tropical optimism.