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On Safari

They found themselves on safari in a bid to save their marriage; to this, the animals were oblivious. Exactly how the trip would inject life into their deathly marriage remained to be seen. Would it prove an exotic requiem?

Why waste money on counselling, her husband had argued, when they could go on holiday? Once more, he had failed to address the core issues. Autumnal skies enshrouding suburbia, they were enticed by ink-smudged colour supplements shaken free from weekend papers. Allowing her husband's skewed logic to sway her briefly, they booked before changing their minds.

In their parade, magnificent beasts failed to serve as ample distraction. Transported beside each other, juddering over rocky terrain, they observed not the wonders of the animal kingdom but other couples, watched for the signs of intimacy they lacked. For their attention, they were rewarded in abundance, their fellow holidaymakers making a doe-eyed pantomime of their devotions. Was this, they wondered, for their benefit? They played witness to levels of engagement as alien to them as their surroundings. Doleful, they snapped sun-drenched savannahs to revisit in a cold grey town.

At night, around campfires, they lost themselves in cocktails they couldn't pronounce.

Returning home, lawyers would be the first to bask in the glow of their respective tans.

Story by:

Stuart Snelson

24 January 2013