Saturday, February 8, 2014


Falling in love spans the extremes of having your soul crucified—and ecstasy. That may or may not not include sexual ecstasy—but, most probably it does. Would that I know what the term means exactly. I’m damned if I am going to find out. Ecstasy is not some technical thing. It’s as close as one gets to absolute fulfillment.

And it feels so good.

Physical, emotional, psychological? When it comes right down to it, they are all the same. We crave emotional fulfillment—and, when IT HAPPENS –and it does —we are in awe.

I was pre-pubescent, and on vocation in Monte Carlo, when I first heard the term. I passed a group of practically naked women—sunbathing topless around the pool of Le Beach Club—and one of then said? “But he brings me ecstasy.”

I had no idea what she meant—but I knew I had heard something that was best not discussed around the dinner table. Actually, given the culture at home, it probably could have been—but I would have been teased to death by my step-father. He had a quick wit—and was ruthless with it. You gave him an opening at your peril. For all that, I loved him dearly, and if I have any verbal skills, I owe them to fencing with him.

Bunny—now dead I am saddened to say—was the first great love of my life, and the first American woman I was involved with. Did she color my feelings about this extraordinary country? I’m sure she did—and strongly at that—though I don’t recall discussing the U.S. much at all. At the time we met she had just separated from the head of an oil company and lived near my home in Ireland. I had just graduated from university—Trinity College, Dublin—and was far from sure what to do in the future. After I met her, I didn’t much think about it. I lived in the moment. We both did. It was the best of times—and it broke my heart.

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