Of the smokers I’ve kissed

by Katrine Kunst

The man next to me on the Shinkansen from Tokyo to Kyoto makes me think of the smokers I've kissed.

 He's sound asleep, that's for sure. Snoring, and his mouth wide open.  The mouth. It's sending out this really heavy odeur, the one that belongs to the real smokers  - not the occasional smoker — built up from thousands and thousands of cigarettes. That sends me down memory lane for a while. 

Not for long though, cause I haven't actually kissed that many real smokers. 

I think of A.

How he kissed me in that tiny car of his. I was very young and he was kind of old. Maybe 10 years older than I. And he totally blew me away with his grown up-ness. Things however, never got further than the kissing and some fondling. I was just starting my independent life, and he was already tired of his. Misfits, I came to conclude. 

And I think of J. 

By the time we arrived at the kissing, we already had a history as an old couple. The whole thing was so damn complicated, so it never went beyond a smoking kiss.

Come to think about it, of the smokers I've kissed, the lighting up was no doubt the best part.