Irene is returning from a jog on the beach of the Verdura Resort. “Steinbeck was right, there is no better doctor than fresh air, sea and sun– it’s wonderful here. We have just about finished picking the olives for the next batch of Organics,” she says, referring to the organic cosmetics range she has brought out.
“Friday I’ll be back for the DJ set at the Donovan Bar”. “Fantastic, so you’ll be there for mum’s Sunday lunch in the country.” “Is dad coming to Surrey as well?” “It would seem that Mr. Forte has promised to switch off a bit this weekend…” “We’ll see.”Irene is doubtful and says goodbye to her sister as she lowers her voice and enters the Spa.
She almost failed to notice that a guest was approaching the counter – a tanned woman holding Alain de Botton’s latest book. “I wonder if this woman would agree with the philosopher on the idea that romantic love ruins our lives,” Irene muses ironically.
The woman enters Spa for The Mind. Irene, on the other hand, walks out, heading for the swimming pool overlooking the Mediterranean.
“Nobody’s going to stop me enjoying five minutes of the sunset,” she says to herself, preparing to enjoy the peace and quiet, interrupted only by the shrieks of the seagulls.
But as soon as she lies down, a little boy walks over and taps her on the shoulder. “Hey, you want to hear a secret? Close your eyes. When you open them, I’ll show you something special. It’s my Forte passport, you see? Look at all the stamps I’ve got. Five of them, which means next time, thanks to me, the whole family can come, for free”.