Sunday morning and I am running my (ever so slow) bath, mindful of the old water pipes and the (apparently) low water pressure, when I begin to realise that, just in the past twenty four hours, the flow has dwindled still further, to the merest trickle. Suddenly it dawns on me, in one of those delayed ‘duh’ moments, that maybe the filter’s clogged up. So out comes the shifting spanner and shit! there is half an inch of sand built up, packed against the filter so that I am amazed that any water was coming out at all! I tap the filter against the side of the Jacuzzi, dislodge the Namib desert, clean out the filter, empty the bath and start over: the water gushes joyously out like Old Faithful!

You won’t mind the geographic confusion…this, of course, is all deeply symbolic. Ahem….

Last night, Rob called me on the landline; this after our long Skype chat in the afternoon and the usual to-and-fro of email chitchat. ‘Babe,’ she said, ‘it’s done! I’ve finished the immigration application! Tomorrow I’m packing it all up in a box and sending it in!’

In front of City Hall

And as she spoke, both of us knew that in some deep sense something profound had shifted. Almost four years after she broached the subject, the moment has finally come: the divorce is through, the permanent residence application is going in, the house is on the market – all of this, and the first quarter of the new year is not quite over.

This is not just going with the flow, this is surfing the wave!

After I had finished talking to Rob, as I was preparing for bed, the thought went through me: Canada! This time, it could happen! It will happen.