A terrific story opening:
Once upon a time, when men and women hurtled through the air on metal wings, when they wore webbed feet and walked on the bottom of the sea, learning the speech of whales and the songs of the dolphins, when pearly-fleshed and jewelled apparitions of Texans herdsmen and houris shimmered in the dusk on Nicaraguan hillsides, when folk in Norway and Tasmania in dead of winter could dream of fresh strawberries, dates, guavas and passion fruits and find them spread next morning on their tables, there was a woman who was largely irrelevant, and therefore happy.
— A.S. Byatt, "The Djinn in the Nightingale's Eye"
(I don't recall the rest of the story living up to it, but hey, the first line justifies the existence of the whole story.)comment(s) (how-to) | link