And so, with the hungry wolf of winter closing its maw around my windpipe, the fourth season of A Harem of Dusky Beauties must now conclude. My ashtray will lay fallow for a while, in the hope that it may someday bring forth a stronger crop. I hope that the last six months have brought you joy and education.
The Harem shall return someday, of course – perhaps on a morning when the river, engorged by the meltwaters of spring, floods its banks and threatens the integrity of my humidor; or when, awakened by the sound of gay singing outside my window, I adjourn to the veranda with a Petite Corona, and watched the parade of milkmaids on their way to work; or when, sitting on a restaurant patio with some paramour, she wrinkles her nose in distaste as the aroma of fine Havana leaf wafts from the table a ways over. “Excuse me,” I will tenderly whisper, removing my napkin. “There’s somewhere I would rather be.”
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Until we meet again, may all your smoke rings be round.
Update: The above mentioned hiatus ended on 1 January 2018.