Adelaide was sitting on the beach, watching the passing parade of faces she vaguely recognised. It was getting late, but it had been a scorching day, so Adelaide stayed, glad of the relief.
Children splashed in the shallows. Lovers held hands. Buffed bodies jogged past. It was a Brilliant day to be Adelaide.
Adelaide leaned back on her arms and smiled as the sun disappeared. The sky was still a glorious orange.
And the Dogs were off their leads. Poodles, Labradors, Boxers and all the breeds between. A not-small Dog approached Adelaide’s child and Adelaide moved towards the Dog. Her heart was beating and her legs were shaking, but she kept walking, because a Dog was approaching her child.
‘Oh, don’t worry about him.’ There was a shrill voice in Adelaide’s right ear. Adelaide turned and she was face-to-face with a woman whose lipstick was bleeding into the smoker’s lines surrounding her lips.
‘He’ll lick you to death soon as bite you.’ The woman smiled a pink and toothy smile. ‘Won’t you boy?’ The Dog jumped. His jump splashed Adelaide.
‘I’d prefer we didn’t die either way,’ Adelaide said and she smiled an Adelaide smile.
The woman pursed her pink lips and shook the jangly lead. She sniffed a small sniff then screwed up her nose.
‘You’re not a Dog Person, are you?’ she said to Adelaide.
‘I’m a monkey,’ said Adelaide. ‘My most compatible match is a Dragon. Or a Rat.’
The woman sniffed again and Adelaide knew it was time to go home.