There must be something…

… about pheromones. I immediately liked the smell of Suldrun. It wasn’t her perfume or her soap, though both were present. As she came to my table in Nikos’ last night, I remembered that she had smelled attractive the previous evening – the evening of the fight. She’s from a West Indian background, I guess, with full lips and dark, watchful eyes. Compact, somehow muscular. London accent with University veneer.

“I came to thank you for last night,” standing over my table.

“I did nothing. Sit down a moment.”

Sitting down, “No. You could have shopped me. You don’t know Dave. He can get violent.”

“Really?” Mock surprise.

She grinned. I asked her what she was drinking.

“I was going to buy you one.”

And so on. I didn’t want to get involved, but she stayed for supper – stuffed aubergines – and we chatted. About archaeology. Fresh from my adventure the other day, I was fluent. And that was it. Honest! Despite all the teasing I got from Alexis this morning. He wasn’t even in Nikos’ last night, for heaven’s sake. OK. I gave her a lift to her hotel on the bike. No. I didn’t go in. I wasn’t invited, anyway. No. I don’t plan to see her again. Give me strength.

In between mockery and close questioning about Suldrun, we launched the boat for the first time today, using the age-old Greek method of scooping it up with a fork-lift truck and driving into the water with it. I’d been wondering how we were going to do it, because we were working on the boat about twenty yards from the high water mark – not that there’s much of a tide here.

It wasn’t quite that simple. In fact, one end of the boat was first lifted on to a padded trolley with four wheels, then the fork-lift went round the other end and sort of lifted and pushed the whole lot into the water until the boat floated free. It seemed that half the town was involved, either to steady the boat or in an advisory capacity. Most of them, come to think of it, in an advisory capacity. We had to lay metal tracks into the water for the fork-lift, so he’d have the grip to get out again, but it was obvious they had all done it before. It cost me a round of about twenty brandies for all, especially the advisers, and a packet of cigarettes for the fork-lift driver, who is gainfully employed elsewhere in town.

The boat did not sink immediately, and was still afloat when I left to come here.

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