Four.

I never understood why you did what you did.

Did it make you happy to know that you’ve hurt me?

They told me to forget about it. It’s all in the past. Move on. Everything will be better if you don’t think about it.

But I couldn’t forget it. I couldn’t forgive you. You hurt me and I couldn’t let it go.

I shut you out of my life. I thought that the best way to forget was to pretend you never existed.

But I couldn’t live that way forever.

And so, I forgave you.

I still don’t understand why you did what you did.

You’re forgiven. But the bruise you left will always be there.

The black eye you gave me will never disappear no matter how hard I try to forget.

Three.

“Can you wash the dishes?”

“Can I do it later?”

“Can you do it now?”

“I’ll do it later.”

You never did the dishes.

 

“Can you do the laundry?”

“Can I do it later?”

“Do it now.”

“I’ll do it later.”

Your clothes are everywhere.

 

“Can you fix your room?”

“Later.”

“Now.”

Sigh. “Later!”

How can you live like this?

 

Two.

We’re late.

I waited for you to finish putting your make-up on.

I remind you of the time.

You said five more minutes. You also said that twenty minutes ago.

Ten minutes later, we got in your car.

You in the driver seat while I’m riding shotgun.

You fix the rear view mirror and look at your reflection.

You put your seatbelt on.

Before we left, you whipped out your phone and took a dozen pictures of yourself.

We’re late.

The Day We Walked

“Taxi!” He yelled as he tried to hail a cab.

The yellow car drove past him. He caught a glimpse of the passenger riding at the back, looking relieved to have found a taxi to take him to wherever he needed to go.

“I’m hungry,” I said.

“Sorry, I think it’ll be a while before we can get a cab,” he said.

I could feel my empty stomach begging for food.

“You know what, I think we can walk it,” he said. His eyes sparkled. I could tell he was already thinking about the route that we would be taking and how long our journey was going to be.

“Isn’t it far?” I said, a bit worried.

“Not that far. I’ve done it before. We’ll just have to walk a few blocks, cross the bridge and walk a few more blocks,” he explained. I was still dissuaded. “We might even be able to get a cab along the way,” he continued. “Right now, our chances of getting one here is nil”

He was trying his best to persuade me.

“How long will it take us to get there?” I asked.

“Fifteen, twenty minutes tops,” he said confidently.

After a few minutes of thinking, I finally accepted his proposal. We were going to walk.

While walking, we shared stories and did a bit of sight seeing. I’ve lived in the city most of my life but I’ve never noticed some of the buildings that we passed. We walked until we reached the red light district, known for its after hours services to foreigners in the area. It was still early so there weren’t a lot of people around yet.

We walked some more until we reached the intersection.

“Are we almost there?” I asked. I was getting tired and I felt my stomach’s desperate plea for food again.

“Yeah we’re almost there. We just have to walk a little more and then we’ll get to the bridge,” he assured me.

“What?! We haven’t even reached the bridge yet?” I said. I was getting angry because of my hunger. “You said this was only going to take fifteen minutes.”

“I said twenty minutes tops and you walk slower than me that’s why it’s taking longer,” he said.

“WHAT?!” I exclaimed.

“Ok calm down,” he said. “Why don’t we eat first?”

“Fine,” I said. I was hungry and irritated. “Where are we going to eat?”

“There’s a mall up ahead,” he was looking at me nervously. I couldn’t see the mall. “But we need to walk a bit,” he continued. I looked at him like I was ready to eat him. “Do you want me to carry you?” he asked. I kept quiet and walked ahead of him. “Do you know the way already?” he asked again. I didn’t so I stopped walking and waited for him to catch up.

We reached the mall and looked for a place to eat. We found a burger joint in the lower ground level. We ordered and I remained silent.

He kept on trying to make me laugh while we were waiting for our food. I couldn’t stay mad at him for long so I started to give in to his jokes.

“So you’re not mad at me anymore?” he asked. I shook my head and he smiled.

After a while, our food arrived but before I could start eating he took my hand, looked me in the eyes and said, “Happy Valentines Day.”

Life in a Bubble

All my life, I have lived in a plastic bubble.

In my bubble, I have travelled all over the world and I’ve seen many things – both good and bad.

I have seen the ruins of Athens, the pyramids in Egypt, the Great Wall of China.

I have seen the beauty of the world and the ugliness brought about by humanity.

I have seen people love, fight, cry.

I have talked to people of different ethnicities.

I have shared what I have seen with the people I met.

I have seen and done all these and yet…

I feel empty.