Her little finger kept tipping on the surface of the grassed ground. No one can really tell whether she was nervous or simply being too enthusiastic. But, from her smile, those seeing her may assume the latter. Though she always wore that smile. A kind of smile people loved. When she was smiling, her eyes shone and glistened. It reminded people of those eyes of a rabbit that her thick glasses could barely hide the softness in it.

It’d been approximately thirty five minutes twenty seconds that she had been sitting there at the park all by herself. Thirty five minutes twenty nine seconds now, or it’s gone half past one. That was how she’d love to count time. In details. In precise numbers. No single second left unsaid. As how she measured how many steps she took from home to the bus shelter: one hundred and fifty two steps; or from the bus stop to work: two hundred and seven steps; or how she just discovered three hundred and fifty three steps to reach the park from work. No body really knew about it. How she did all those. How she viewed things in a complex details. How she realized that her brain never let her rest a bit. How it forced her to get busy with her mind all the time.

She pictured her brain interior like a wheel train of a clock that never stopped moving in a super high speed oscillation. That sometimes she wish she could secretly put any kind of obstruent to interupt its movement so she could stop a tiny second to know how it was to be normal.

Normal. The most underrated thing people may think of. That was what she always thought.

Sixty three persons: forty eight in pair and thirteen in group and two in solitary as she was. She had been counting the visitors of the park that just passed by. The twenty four couples were her favorite. Mostly in their early adolescence. But her most favorite was always the old ones. Very few of them. But at least she knew that there was this hope that someone who could love and stay forever really existed.

She figured herself much older and be in pair with someone. How lovely the idea was. Even though she barely ever knew how it was really like to fall for someone. Was it like when her stomach reacted to see documenter of the young Lennon? Or like the strange feeling she always had whenever she was in this art class in her high school cause the teacher was so attractive, good-looking and all? Or like the nausea that always struck whenever she was too enthusiastic about something? She always wondered. 

I wish I could tell her. That someday she would know. That she would really meet this person. Someone who was odd enough to level her peculiarity. Someone as strange as her, who would sit next to her and secretly adore her complexity.

Fifty one minutes forty five seconds, she decided to walk back to her office. Another three hundred and fifty three steps, or maybe more. She would find out.


Hide and Seek

I miss those trees standing in line making a majestic row. That dance and sigh when the wind blows. I miss those thin weather that bites my skin and through my bone. When my nose hurts cause it is just too cold to breathe. I miss to see the fog. That blurs the sight of the mountain. And creates the most mysterious field of vision. I miss those empty narrow streets that veer as if trying to run, and tell me “So, let’s play hide and seek!”.

A response to a weekly photo challenge: narrow.
I took these pictures in Darajat Pass, Garut, West Java, ID by the beginning of the year 2015. 

A live mockery that danced

Last night, I had a strange dream.

I was standing in front of a hall of a house. The hall was unusually long and narrow. Some people walked past me through it and disappeared. I felt one of them pushed me, and hurried me to go into the hall. I was in doubt, but I entered the hall finally. I heard someone told me that I could meet my late grandma at the end of the hall. I didn’t know who it was. Didn’t even recognize the voice. But I followed through.

It was dramatic that I walked veeeery slow. Until I reached the end of the hall, and it was just an empty white wall. I was confused, and strangely I found out that I had to go to the right and made a little u-turn. People still kept passing me and left me with my own slow movement. Then at one corner I finally saw her standing gracefully.

She was wearing a veil covering the half of her face. But from her eyes, I knew it was really my grandma. She looked pretty younger than the version of her that I remembered before. Then I moved closer.

We looked at each other for some seconds. From the line around her eyes, I could see she was smiling at me. So, I smiled and suddenly felt very happy. I told her that I missed her so much. Yet, she didn’t reply, instead, told me this in a very steady voice, “You have to be a strong woman.”

I got the sentence crystal clear: You. Have. To. Be. A. Strong. Woman. I was pretty sure that I got every word of it plainly. And suddenly, the sound of her voice was echoing through the hall and getting even louder. It was more like an ascending sound that was moving toward me to get into my ears.

I woke up in the morning and found my self this very strange feeling. And it made me think.

All my life, I always thought myself strong enough. But, if I was, so why she, or perhaps the dream, had to tell me to be one? And, the dream turned out to me like a live mockery that danced on its own exquisiteness. It made me ask my self once again, have I been strong enough?

A response to the daily prompt: dramatic.

To this point of understanding

It is  sad when someone thinks that I and (s)he are competing. The thing is I am not interested in competing with anyone. I don’t care if people are better than me. I don’t get hurt either when they are. No, this life is not a school. No more. We just make our self bitter when we’re competing. We’ll get hurt when someone is better/has more than us. It makes me sad when any person I know thinks that I’m competing with her/him. No, dear. I’m not up for competition. You want to think that you’re better? Oh, go ahead. I won’t care.

Raged by anger and disappointment, she is typing it into her micro blogging site and wishing someone will read it. She hates what someone has just done to her.  She just can’t take it anymore. It is just illogical for her that someone who is a lot older, more experienced, and wealthier than her will think that she is competing. She just thinks that she wants to do her responsibility. She just wants to do what she has to do. Why there should be this kind of person (she thought)  that assumes she is competing.

It is time to click the “publish” button, but she seems to retreat. She is clearly in doubt, and immediately sighs. She closes her eyes and is now taking a deep breath. Then she just deletes everything and throws her smartphone away.

She thinks it is just no use to reveal. It is just no use. And she hates it that she is always to be the one who comes to this point of understanding. She hates it.

A prompt to daily post: understanding.