A Beach and a Stranger
“You like Coke? You hate Pepsi. You’re crazy about Star Wars. You read. You talk so much. You’re beautiful. Are you for real?”
It’s a memory from the past and its been peeping out for long now, awaiting its chance to be penned down, like other more fortunate ones. It’s from a time of hurt, when bliss found me- transiently. And it seems, to only form a memory. But that’s what life is, right? A caravan of memories. .
So I came across him when I was far from home, gone for some work, bang on in the middle of my exams. And there I was, my heart still in tatters, trying to heal, a certain self defense mode on, and other self destructive mode on. I mean, hello, he could’ve been a psychopath for all I knew! Asking him to take me to the beach. And that too in an absolutely new place. Yes, I was and still am obsessed with beaches, and he was cute. But that was no reason to ask a random guy I knew for three hours, barely, to take me to the beach which was two hours away.
But as I have mentioned before, it was a chapter of my life when I was pernicious to my own self. I might as well have been walking around with a sign pinned on my back reading- ‘waiting to be kidnapped’, ‘wants to be killed’, ‘looking for trouble’, and so on and forth. He even told me when we were on our way back, “Adya, never trust anyone like you trusted me. I could’ve done anything to you”. I wish he would have 😛 if you get the drift. . .
We had these delicious chili snacks the name of which I just can’t recall. We were walking on the beach, holding hands, talking about stars and constellations, about god and religion, soaked in the water, waist down, when he bent down to collect a few shells he had spotted for me, and there goes my phone. I’d kept it in his front pocket so it wouldn’t get wet in the back pocket of my denims. And just as I was about to dive into the waters, which I might add were very rough around that time of the year, guess who comes riding on a horse yelling at me to stop. No, alas! No knight in shining armour 😛 Just a policeman who thought I was trying to commit suicide. (Meredith much?)
It is queer, that a close friend of mine had a dream just before I’d left for this place, of which she told me on my return after listening to the tale of my antics. She had this vision of me, walking towards an empty beach, all alone, jumping into it, and drowning. Which is pretty spooky considering I know how to swim.
Anyways, so, back to the beach now. I know I should’ve called my parents from his phone and told them this happened. I couldn’t. They would’ve killed me if they knew I was out with a stranger. Jumping into the water would’ve been more pleasant that hearing them go all bazooka on me. BIG mistake.
By now the sun had gone down and it was starting to get dark. We still didn’t want to head back. Suddenly he tells me, “Adya, do whatever, but don’t look down”. “Why”, I asked him. “There are thousands of crabs coming out of the beach and scuttling around our feet”. That sure did shut me up for a bit. I didn’t have the guts to look down for a long time! But I did finally. Creeeeeepy!!!!
I was hungry now. Soaked in salty sea water chest down, covered in beach sand, stinking of fishes perhaps, we walk into a mall and everyone, yes everyone was staring at us. But who were we to give a damn! We went to get some food and I had my first shwarma. Oh! It was one hell of a shwarma. By now we could see many stars- it was time to head back.
When I reached the hostel I was putting up in, it was late into the night. And the moment I walked in through the gate, all hell broke loose. Long story short, nobody could reach me and while my parents were getting in touch with the police, the warden had forcibly opened my luggage in an attempt to find some clues to my whereabouts, and a few girls were crying because they thought I had been abducted by, well, abducted by pimps.
So much for drama in my life. (This should perhaps be one of my signature lines)
I didn’t win the competition I had gone for. But I sure as hell managed to rock quite a few boats. You’d think the trip was a complete waste of time. It wasn’t. For two reasons. One I shall speak of now. The other, is reserved for another time.
I met a stranger who took me to the beach. I found delightful company with him. The very ephemeral nature of this connection made it special, made it worth a memory to be put down here. It was a getaway, an escape, a teeny portal into a different dimension. A place where strangers could be trusted, where crabs didn’t bite you, where you could walk around dressed pretty much in rags and sand, without a care in the world. Where my only contact with my older world, was my phone, which had an epic accidental funeral. When I look back to that time I always want to cherish this memory. It was so short, elusory, even I couldn’t have spoiled it.
I didn’t then, but I did later. Sigh. That’s me.
[The image used doesn’t not belong to Adya Vac, it has been taken from the internet]
https://adya00.wordpress.com/2014/04/13/a-beach-and-a-stranger/ @Copyright 2014, Adya Vac