Tuesday, March 29

Elegantly Wasted

It was the perfect day. He wasn't completely sure what that meant because it'd been a while since, well... Many phrases whistled through his head but the one that fit, the words that felt right were - he'd felt alive.

It was like unwrapping a gift and finding something incomparably better than what one was expecting. The rare times when an explosion of giddy joy left one speechless & breathless simultaneously. That perfect, first kiss. The day combined the vibrancy of all those moments and all it had taken was one phone call.

Thing was, it was a phone call from HER.

She was in Bombay. To meet him.

She'd been to the city many years ago on a short trip, but like most out-of-towners, Bombay had scared the bejeesus out of any possible return trips. Until now. So it began - the perfect day.

She didn't remember anything good about the city and he, in his social hermit role, had not seen much of it in the two whole years he'd lived there. That wasn't relevant though. Even as they walked, saw the sights, ate or sat on the jetty watching the sea, they talked. He made her laugh.

He loved the easy familiarity with which they could converse, no matter how long the pause. It'd been almost six years. But they were two people who knew each other so intimately, even their silences counted as conversation. 

He wanted to ask what she was doing in Bombay. After dinner, strolling on the promenade and enveloped by the salt-breeze, they kissed. He stopped wondering. He was at peace. He couldn't stop smiling. It really was the perfect day.

He woke up, still smiling.
But he couldn't remember why.

Then, the phone rang.

Song for the moment: Dream a little dream - Sissel Kyrkjebo

Wednesday, March 23

High & Dry

The two usual suspects sat slumped at a corner table. The repose that hung around as they occasionally sipped beer and spoke suggested this was a routine event. The truth, however, was far more painful. Professional ambitions, personal realisations and other matters had conspired to put about 4 months and 1000 kilometres between their pub sessions. The casualness had been replaced by a sense of occasion, which was irksome, but somewhat ignorable.

The music was not. They'd come to this particular pub because the beer was good and the music, mostly rock, was what they needed. But they were no longer regulars, so neither could understand when the place had decided to turn into a country-western stall. One of the guys even predicted the entry of some bloke in a 10 gallon hat, which would probably not have raised a murmur. Nobody of the type showed, thankfully. There was only so much a cold brew could stave off.

What was also odd was the theme of the conversation. It had been a year to the day since the last bag had been packed and the flight taken. One would think a year would be enough for time to move on from past obstacles, old doubts and repeated experiences. Apparently, it was not. At some level, that amused both of them, but it asked a lot of nagging questions to a couple of very exhausted men. So they continued to talk, dissect why neither could write worth a damn any more, make plans & resolutions, bob heads in time to the music and stare off into the distance, comfortable in the moment. For the ghost of an instant, it was like 2010 had never happened.

Song for the moment: Roll me away - Bob Seger