I remember it like it was yesterday. Sundays were dry beach parties at that time; none of us were old enough to get alcohol from the Spar, not even on the blag, and so we would load up on cigs and anything that any of us could lift from our folks. Dry Sunday parties always started early too, before dark.

I was lying on my back in the sand, watching seagulls wheeling overhead and working my way through the second of my Marlboro Reds, when a face I did not recognise appeared above me.

“My goodness, an Angel!”

The words had left my mouth before I had even considered them, like a reflex. For a second I waited to be laughed at, or hit by a jealous and insecure boyfriend, but neither expected payback was forthcoming. Instead Fate made her smile at me;

“It’s good when men notice that I am heavenly without me having to tell them.”

Sure now, looking back, it’s hard not to think that she was an uppity bitch to my bumbling sycophant; actually it was all without artifice.

As the sun sank an hour later we were sharing a smoke.