Gloria is beautiful in an all-American pin-up way. Blond, slender, shapely, and still under fifty.

This is a special day for her as her eldest child, an advertisement-version of an airline pilot, has come to visit. It doesn’t happen often.

They are at her summer cottage on a hill, overlooking a lake, and in the afternoon she says to him, “Let’s go down to the shore and swim.”

She is wearing a white one-piece bathing suit, Betty Grable style. He is in a tank suit like the one he wore when he was a lifeguard.

Gloria leads the way down carrying a basket with bottled water and sunscreen.

Once at the lakeshore, they spread their towels on the sand that was brought in last spring by the owners’ association. Gloria asks him to rub sunblock onto her back and lies down to sunbathe. Her son dives into the water and swims to the raft anchored some hundred feet from the shoreline. He lifts himself onto the raft, dives in, swims back, lifts himself up again and again.

Gloria watches him intently, her perfect first child.

More swimmers arrive and go to the raft. Her son swims away from them and joins her on the shore.

“I knew you would come in when other people arrived. I know how you are,” she says. “You have always been a loner.”

He does not reply but lies down on the towel next to her.

For a long while they stay quiet, facing up to the sun, eyes closed, each dreaming their own thoughts.

Then he is on top of her. She feels his hardness.

ANA DANIEL spent thirty years in management consulting and business strategy for a Wall Street firm, then completed doctoral studies at New York University and taught Modern European History at Southampton College on Long Island. Daniel was the founding chair of Bay Street Theatre in Sag Harbor and serves on the board of Pianofest in the Hamptons.