Balsamic Vignettes #9


Milly was a girl of short stature, with two light brown bobby pins used to keep her jet black hair neat. Her pale skin hadn’t been kissed by the sun enough to sport any freckles at all and her grey eyes entranced no boys at school.

For Milly, the ultimate satisfaction could be found not in golden sunsets or drinkable coffees, in optimum- temperature museums or in alpine retreats. She cared less about chirping birds than she did for Saturday night discos and she hardly ever raised an eyebrow as the ice-cream van made the rounds of her neighbourhood.

Yet her favourite past-time, her absolute reason for existence, was her fervent worship of terrible Kung Fu films. She praised the low-quality Hong Kong cinema with reverence and prostrated before the altar of shocking special effects. Her collection was solely of Chinese films from the 1980s, where the language is Mandarin and the subtitles are Cantonese, the elderly grandmasters were as tough as a $2 steak and the magenta blood sprays oceans. She stood in the dim, flickering light of the television screen and copied their moves. By her teenage years, she was able to authentically replicate Muay Thai moves, Capoeira kicks, Jiu Jistu jabs and achieve the most phenomenal sense of Eastern Zen.


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