11 August 2014.
I am trying to say a simple Goodbye when a buzzing sound distracts me. With a slight frown on my face, I persist with the task at hand when suddenly the words catch themselves in my throat.
Umm…it is not JUST the words though! A weird fluttering within makes me splutter and gasp, as I choke over an unfortunate fly that took the wrong turn. Poor thing hit a dead end; crashing into the darkness called My Throat.
Amid peals of laughter courtesy my friend and his family, I struggle with the dying soul…coughing her up, drowning her down. Riding on the sudden wave of water that gushes through my throat, the fly emerges into the open…flailing in her flight towards freedom.
I think of this fly who was forced to take this unfortunate detour mid-flight, while one of my best friends is flying over the clouds. He is mid-flight somewhere too at the moment, probably hovering over London Heathrow airport. Like a majority of my seniors, batchmates and juniors, he has joined the gang bang travelling to the US of A for their Masters’. It has been in the pipeline for long, so there has been ample time to be mentally prepared. A Masters’ Degree followed by a PhD, perhaps a few years of work…people say the United States of America is a land of no return. As I coughed up a reluctant Goodbye, a part of me got ready for a friendship that will thrive hereafter on the advances of technology. An instant message and a video chat will recreate the evening catching-up sessions. It’s all in there; the motivation, the need, the will. But something will always be missing. His physical presence, his half-smile.
Today distances are not what they used to be. We can cross entire continents within a few hours’, so he’s just round the corner really. Sure, there would be the annual 10-day visits and the whenever Skype chats, but impromptu coffee plans would no longer include him. I calculate the years he’s going to be away and add it to our current ages.
It’s going to be a long wait, having him back among us to experience those crazy moments. And that is perhaps why, the fly expressed what my words couldn’t…
That a simple word like Goodbye is sometimes the hardest thing to say. The words just get stuck, thanks to a tiny fly caught in mid-flight.
11 August 2014.