The right kind of light for me is soft diffuse light. Candlelight. Dusk. The inside of an heirloom armoire with the doors closed. I am not a woman of a certain age, in a sequined black dress, draped over the piano, singing torch songs in a seedy club that’s dimly lit. I am ageless! You might think I was thirty!
My home, I light with “fairy lights,” which is a fancy word for tea candles. If I plan to entertain (possibly the young Italian who moved into the next apartment) I recommend floating candles in crystal bowls filled with Perrier water for that extra sparkle that will distract him from looking closely at the crow’s feet around your eyes and possibly making a correct judgment.
Until your visitor’s eyes adjust to the sensual deep-sea darkness of your apartment, lead him by the hand. He is so young. But you are creating for him a scene, an illusion, a game of love -- and it must be kept-up! Use care! At the bar where you met him in the dark hallway, you told him you were 45. Remember: Before he arrives, pull out all the wiring in the bathroom. It is harsh and overhead. No one needs the shock.
But what can be done about the morning? It comes as rays of pink through the tightly drawn curtains of thick black velvet. It comes creeping on cat’s feet under the sill of the East-facing kitchen window that you have plugged with towels. What to do? My friends, I will share with you my secret, and that is to get up early, very early, and be gone from your own house like a Robin Goodfellow.
If last night was a success (and there is no doubt it was) the malleable boy with the body of fine Italian marble will call. He longs to be back in your dark, fairy-lit bower, to lie back on your fragrant bosom of indeterminate age, and be completely unable to see his hand.