The sun lit the fields for miles on that clear winter day. The house was cold, and rolling back the covers he felt shivers run down his spine. He felt his age today, and needed to feel the sun on his tired face, reminding him that the world hadn’t forgotten him. Pulling his dressing gown over his pyjamas, he walked to the kitchen and made a pot of tea. Two tea bags as always, even if there was only one person these days.
The 9 spoons hung on the wall, each unique in their own way. He took them off their hooks one by one, saying their names as if they were new acquaintances.
"Dill" "Rosemary" "Parsley" "Lavender" "Thyme" "Oregano" "Chives" "Sage" "Cilantro"
He only did it because she used to. He delivered her line perfectly, except he could never roll the ‘r’ in Cilantro. How he longed to hear her Spanish purr again.
The herbs sat on windowsill, awaiting their spoons. He would use the chives today. He took out its spoon and gathering a heap from the bowl ate a few off the top.
"Es rico, si?" She would grin.
"It’s rico dear." He’d reply, as she laughed at his Englishness.
He only did it because she used to. The chives seemed to taste stronger now, even though it seemed impossible. He liked to imagine that her ashes had floated from the hilltop by their house and over their garden, sailing on the wind and over the plants, it was the only explanation for why they tasted so good. She took care of them even in death, he could feel it. He’d keep them alive as long as they grew from the ground where she was scattered, as they kept part of her alive.
He only did it because she used to.