(Note: this was written nearly a decade ago and remained forever in the drafts folder. No longer relevant and is as good as fiction, hence, reposting.)
In my life, relatively short and thus lacking in experience, I had felt the sparks of freedom that has touched the lives of people I have known. These aren’t epiphanies or sudden bursts of life-altering moments. These are everyday stories of how people recognized the constraints that bound them, struggled for a way out and gradually let in a glorious trickle of freedom into their lives.
From hands running over the familiar slant of letters.
A night by the window, remembering and reading,
Feverish declarations of love in black ink;
A date and time as post-script, six hours away.
A dark silhouette languidly walks the empty streets.
Cocooned in an embrace, drunk on unspoken promises,
The joy of knowing that he chose her and she chose him.
A wave of shyness as eyes meet, lower and look again;
Yellow light floods the young faces, breath fogs up,
And fingers entwine around the corner lamp post.
Slice of moon
The dew-laden leaves shimmer
Are they black opals?
Sweaty fingers link
Clumsy feet tread on hers
First dance of love
Cocoon of wisdom
Myriad tales of love and loss
I wait by my window
Silvered shadows walk
Scent of jasmine
Raven black tresses fan out
The pillow tangles them
An old kiss comes to mind
I forget the year
Smoky wooden oven
Cheese melts into thin crust
A slice of heaven
A veil of icicles
Bejeweled the naked tree
She will write
In vermillion stained pages
A story of love
I wait for the sun,
My room will glow orange,
Like the brewing tea.
The words come slowly
Waiting at the end of each page
The ink is not yet dry
Her bare shoulder
Finesse of an ivory arc
Like tonight’s moon
The frail leaves rustle
Like a cobra’s hood
Woods in winter
Squirrels peep from burrows
A couple reads
Pack a little bag
Soar across cottony skies
Gypsy at heart
A lone maple leaf,
Orange in a sea of grey,
You caught my eye.
Swirling caramel hues
Wispy steam warms the face
My morning coffee
An old love letter
Papery petal to rich plum
The kisses revive
In the old room
An oblong patch of sunbeam
I sat there often
A bare tree watches over me
I read Dickens
In old library
Read Dante by candlelight,
As moths ate words.
A pregnant red bus
The faces unnerve you,
An old friend waves.
I draw the curtains,
Killing a patch of sunbeam,
A peeping neighbour.
I watch silvered shadows walk
On a moonlit path.
A mute observer
Veiled in leafy vines,
Chameleon of a door.
Old tales revive
As one combs a sister’s hair,
Time halts to smile.
The morning rush of patients was over; monitoring vitals, sending laboratory investigations, prescribing medicines and all the relatively small yet hectic duties that internship brought were done with for the day. The patients were in their beds and that provided her some rare quiet moments. She pored over the books that would enable her to cross yet another threshold of her medical career, a postgraduate degree. She concentrated on the questions, mentally eliminating choices and zeroing on a single answer. Confidence surged and ebbed with every guess.
Two hours passed by. Apart from a casual chat with the nurse on duty, there was nothing to interrupt her studies. Few seniors came by later in the evening, and she updated them about any changes in the patients’ conditions. Her duties lessened and she closed her book and waited for nine pm when she could finally go home. Everything seemed dull. She looked at the clock, the minute hand mockingly refused to budge even after what seemed like an eon.
Then he walked in, a confident stride. He had come for his evening shift. Suddenly she became aware of how heavy and awkward her hands felt; and not knowing what to do with them she picked up the book in front of her. Emoting a bilaterally equivalent expression became impossible and she was stuck with the right side of her face trying a hesitant smile, while the left eyelid drooped and the nostril flared. She took in furtive glimpses of him without being too obvious. She was acutely aware of the fact that he stood a few inches away from her and that was her cue to freeze. The simple task of handing over a patient file to him made her sweat glands go into an overdrive. He was totally oblivious of what his presence was doing to her, he probably didn’t even notice that she existed. Time seemed to gallop now, and soon it was time for her to go home. She cursed this relativity of time!
He used to be just another face, another acquaintance. The words that came to her mind when she had first seen him were, “Oh My God! What Acne!” It might have been sudden or gradual, it’s a blur now, but she had looked flustered every time he looked at her or the rare times he talked to her. He hardly knew her, nor did she. And there was no use of harboring any romantic notions for him as it wouldn’t have led to anything. Be reasonable, she chided herself repeatedly. But the heart had stopped taking orders from the reason-seeing-logical-thinking brain. There was a visible disconnect between what she thought and what she felt.
So here she was, acting like an over-enthusiastic teenager, feeling elated every time she caught a glimpse of him or saw him smile; when she had firmly decided that falling in love wasn’t a consideration in the near future.
What was it?
It wasn’t love, it’s too deep a word to assign to her feelings for someone she hardly knew. It wasn’t lust, she didn’t obsess or fantasize about him. It wasn’t an infatuation, he was not the most eligible guy around. It wasn’t the want to be in a relationship, she knew and accepted that he would never reciprocate her feelings. She didn’t feel the urge to see him, or be with him constantly.
She was just happy that there was this boy out there who made her smile every time he crossed her mind. And that’s that.
A lone maple leaf,
Love has an address.
A brown shirt,
The way my heart stopped,
A much loved voice,
Took a chance,
Said out loud;
Bruised and abused.
Hope died a slow death.
Past lessons reviewed,
Same mistake, yet again.
Fell in love,
Gave my heart;
Unwanted, a pesky burden,
Tossed away ever so far.
Bottled away again,
As busy life awaits.
They shake their heads grimly
Ten minutes that haunts me the rest of the day,
I knew it would happen, but it breaks me,
Flawed can he be?
I halt at sunset, forever it seems;
The darkness unsettling,
Mirroring the shadows I take refuge in.
Caught in a tiring dilemma;
The day I cannot return to,
A night I dread to enter.
Past failures, present indecisiveness,
Future unpredictability haunts me.
Time is past, the battle lost;
And I must never emerge from my shell.
And then a brave new hope…
I walk towards the moonrise,
Stepping on, are those past failures?
Emboldened each moment,
I take small steps, surer steps.
Something brings hope,
Blows away uncertainties.
I search for my old self,
Perhaps looming in the distant horizon;
But a better self is mirrored back,
Now, this moment; I am she.
Unburdening the inferiority and pessimism,
I break into a run.
Is that a brighter light I see?
I run towards the dawn.
Time’s ticking away;
No use mourning the moments lost,
I would lose some more.
To catch up would be tough,
To surpass, euphoric.
I see it now, my goal, definite and clear;
The remoteness doesn’t scare me,
Nor will that darkest hour before dawn,
The one with wagging tongues, critical stares,
Deadly impatience and relapses into self-pity.
Translating this strong self-belief into action,
I shape my destiny;
And I run, like never before,
Towards the inviting new day.
Wake up my dreams,
Envision them; revel in the pictures they paint.
Lost in infinity, a billion lives intermingle;
Lurking among them, don’t remain.
Witness my life, each moment,
In you, a mentor, a protector I search;
Shield the blows, cushioning me so,
Hold my hand, steady my stumbling steps,
Encourage my ventures into the unknown,
Remain forever, if you will, my well wisher.
P.S: This is for my well-wishers who have always believed in me, encouraged me and saw me through many a difficult time. Thanks a ton. I will always be grateful to you all.
She noticed the whirl of the ceiling fan in the faint glow of the light streaming through her window. If she peered closely she could distinguish the individual blades of the fan; and resembled a spinning top when she half-shut her eyes. She checked the time. Eleven pm. For the next half an hour she tossed and turned in bed, but sleep eluded her.
She checked the bedside stool for a bottle of water. Empty. Reluctantly, she got out of bed and walked towards the kitchen. The icy gulps of water felt blissful. Humidity made the night unbearable. She felt sweat trickling down her neck and headed for the shower. A refreshing shower might help her sleep better. Once in the bathroom, she took off her sweat drenched t-shirt and examined it. The colors were fast fading; the material over-stretched yet soft, and a clumsily stitched patch of cloth on the sleeve was quite distinct. It was a decade old but she couldn’t bring herself to get rid of it. Every night she slipped into it; the soft feel and the faint, powdery smell of the fabric was a source of comfort. Her mother teased her about it, called her a pack-rat. She smiled thinking about it as she stood under the shower, briefly shivering as the first drops of the cold water fell on her. Drying herself off, she stood in front of the mirror and checked her reflection; she loved being curvaceous, but resolved to shed the few extra pounds off her waistline. Chuckling at how often she made this resolve and its earlier feebleness, she slipped into the first t-shirt she could lay her hands on. It was bubble gum pink, a color she wouldn’t be caught dead in. But with no one around, she put it on and cursed her sister for gifting it a couple of years ago. Her mother is right; she is a pack-rat hoarding even the stuff with the least sentimental value. She checked the time again. Midnight.
She knew she had to leave for work at six in the morning for a 24-hour shift at the hospital, but sleep still eluded her. Maybe she can utilize the time she is awake to surf the net and gather information about the obstetric procedures she might get a chance to assist. An hour of peering closely into the computer screen and scribbling tiny notes on her obstetric and gynaecology text followed. She even updated her blog and checked her mail. One a.m.
She hurriedly got into bed, and desperately wished for a meagre four hours of sleep! Lights dimmed, pillows fluffed up, fan on full speed, few drops of lavender oil on the pillow, a glass of warm milk; she didn’t want to miss a single trick in the book. After half an hour of eyes tightly shut, she sat up wearily on the bed. There wasn’t any use pretending, she wasn’t feeling the least bit sleepy.
Her stomach grumbled. That wasn’t the sound she wanted to hear. She wanted to hear a yawn! Maybe she would sleep better on a full stomach; noodles for dinner are hardly filling. She made a mental note to strike off Maggi from next month’s grocery list. A frantic search for mustard sauce to make her favorite sandwich followed. Plopping down the couch with sandwiches in hand, she thought about the sleepless ordeal before her. The professor who would be on the rounds was infamous for terrorizing the interns; and tomorrow would be no exception. No sleep and a tough taskmaster prodding all day would literally be a lethal combination! She checked the time again. Two a.m.
She picked up the TV guide; and was torn with indecisiveness about whether to watch “American Graffiti” or “Annie Hall”. Never being good with decisions she alternately surfed both the channels watching bits and pieces of both the movies. Woody Allen isn’t half as amusing when one is struggling to sleep. She thought of how closely the gum-chewing dude, driving around town in the first movie, resembled her first crush in high school. And instantly fell into reminiscing those days. Bliss! She was snapped out of her fantasies by the ZooZoos giggling in the new Vodafone ads; and she burst into a fit off giggles to how these egg-headed characters resembled her next door neighbor. Drawing resemblances is something that comes to her instinctively, a secret pleasure that delights her often.
She walked into the balcony to watch the sunrise two and half hours later; basking in the first rays of the day and also enjoying the slight chill of the morning breeze. She dashed into the kitchen for a quick cup of green tea and sat on the balcony again, enjoying the calmness and serenity of this part of the day. A few people were out on the streets…the joggers heading for the nearby park, the vendors on the way to the market, and even few teenagers grudgingly setting off to early morning tuition (the gawky, tall one slouching all the way resembled a character from “The Corpse Bride”).
Five a.m. She had bath again, breakfasted on milk and cereals, and then got dressed for work.
Five-thirty a.m. She lied down on the couch, waiting for her colleague to pick her up at six. A thirty minute long wait.
She rubbed her sleepy eyes, picked up the phone and mumbled groggily, “Hello”.
“Wake up you sleepyhead! We’ll be late. I’ve been waiting for you downstairs for the past ten minutes.”
“Oh sorry! I must have dozed off.”
“No surprises there. You ALWAYS oversleep!”
“Nothing. I’ll be downstairs in two minutes.”
A true story.
Five sons, two daughters, a tiny hut, some land, and a salary of Rs.48 per month. That’s all he had in life. He brooded day in and day out about where he went wrong, while his children were left to fend for themselves. His children were extraordinarily hard-working and slogged for many hours everyday ploughing the fields, selling vegetables, doing odd jobs for neighbors; somehow gathering two meals a day for the entire family. They were overworked, perpetually exhausted; but they never ceased to dream about a way out of the drudgery of their daily lives. They thrived on this single hope.
And one day, the elder two sons joined school on their father’s insistence. They braved the opposition from the rest of village about two boys from the “untouchable caste” mingling with the higher caste students. On the first day of school, they woke up at three in the morning and went about doing their routine chore of ploughing the field so that they can attend school on time. The school was at a distance of sixteen kilometers from their home, but they were too excited to notice the long way ahead of them. They took their slates and pencils for the first time in hand and nervously copied the letters the teacher penned on the blackboard. They learnt to count. And suddenly a new world of infinite possibilities opened before them. A world where nothing was impossible. Despite being the poorest of poor in a remote village, they can now dream of being high officials, lawyers, teachers and even Prime Minister of India! They realized for the first time their capacity to think, to mould their own futures. So, for the rest of the decade and half they diligently studied; and even enrolled the younger siblings in school. They worked day and night to earn money but somehow fitted few hours of school every day.
The eldest son was more academically inclined than the rest. So, the second son took over himself all the responsibility of running the household at the tender age of 15. He attended school and college about twice or thrice a week, and rest of the days he slogged to somehow make ends meet so that the rest of his siblings’ education doesn’t get hampered. Even though his own future seemed bleak, he still nursed his childhood dream of becoming a high official, earning a decent salary, buying a good house and a car. Simple dreams, but way out of his reach.
He was 28 years old by the time his siblings completed their education. He had a commerce degree at hand and no job. And still the responsibility of running the household, as his siblings went for higher studies or on job hunts. One day a girl he had met and befriended in college forced him to appear for a job interview. He refused as he had no time to waste job hunting as his daily income runs his family. But she was adamant, and he finally relented. He got a clerical job in an insurance company. And by dint of hard work over the years he not only overcame his poverty but rose to the position of a high-ranking official in the insurance company. He married the girl, who changed his entire life through a little coaxing. He built not one but two houses, and bought two cars. He surpassed what he dreamt of as a child during the daily sixteen kilometer walk to school. But his greatest satisfaction was that his siblings too had broken the chains of poverty and were all well-placed in life. There was a bank manager, an engineer, a high-ranking government official, and a professor. He had the satisfaction of knowing that his years of sacrifice for his siblings didn’t go to waste. And nothing could surpass the smiles he had put on his parents’ faces. Theirs were the first family from that remote village to have dreamt big, worked continually towards it, and finally achieving it. Others followed their example, having understood the value of education, sheer determination and hard work.
No childhood dream is unattainable. That’s what I had learnt from this story. That’s what I’d learnt from the story of my father’s life, the second son in the story. And he’s the biggest inspiration in my life. And I too am halfway through of attaining my childhood dream of becoming a doctor.
Once again, nothing is impossible! So, dream big!
Pulsating through her very being
Untamed, fervent, inexplicable…a feeling so strong,
Riveting is its course, unyielding to fluid;
Erupting in unison, the euphoric tremors.
Desires escalated, feverish fantasies reigned,
Emboldened by this new power, and exploring;
Lust and love osmosed into one,
Infusing each moment with warmth;
Gripping was the journey, and the union,
He is in her arms now, finally;
Taming, enticing, loving, espousing this man…pure delight!
(First attempt at poetry after six years. I have a major writer’s block when it comes to expressing emotions through poetry. But anyways, here it is…)
Photo Courtesy http://adiberlin.deviantart.com/art/hidden-121232601
Tell a Tale prompt for Week 7: Silence
She smiled imagining Arjun’s delight on hearing the news of her pregnancy, and had a sudden desire to be near him. Cuddling up in the couch, running her fingers through his hair, a quick kiss by him and although secretly delighted, she always feigned anger at this. She longed to be with him; recreating images of their last meeting repeatedly, relishing his presence as if he were actually there. Her mind was full of his thoughts when she felt an arm around her waist, “Don’t, Arjun”, she cried out in mock anger, the words slipping out of her mouth even before she realized she was in her home, not Arjun’s. She turned; and although she had imagined this moment of truth and confrontation a million times in her mind, nothing prepared her for the look of sheer disbelief and hurt on her husband’s face.
She was at a loss of words. What can she say to soften the blow, and ease his pain? A gamut of emotions engulfed her. Shame, guilt, defiance, anger, fear, impatience, grief. Guilt predominated. The gut wrenching silence that followed her words seemed to shake her very existence, the existence of their marriage of seven years. The tension prevailed, and she didn’t have the courage to break it. He left the bed to wait by the window. The seconds ticked by and all she could do was wait. Life never seemed so uncertain.
Seven years ago:
Her family fixed a suitable match for her; and after meeting him a few times in company of numerous relatives, they were married. As she sat on her new bed awaiting the man, whose preference of reading old English classics is the only personal detail she overheard apart from his name; and to whom she’s married now. He came into the room and sat next to her. She could sense his nervousness, the silence punctuated with occasional clearing of his throat. He was waiting for appropriate words or moves to initiate their first interaction alone. She smiled at this endearing cautiousness on his part not to ruin the moment for her. Emboldened by the shared nervousness and indecisiveness, she put her hand over his and looked at him. They smiled. Shyly at first, and then burst into peals of laughter sensing each other’s nervousness on their wedding night. And then they talked. Sharing bits and pieces of their lives, sowing the first seeds of love. They talked into the wee hours of morning. Then they made love, collapsing into each other’s arms. They laid there in a warm, companionable silence; embracing each other; contemplating this new start, the future, and the delightful promises and hopes it held now. Marriage was a plunge into the unknown for them, and they were ecstatic at their good fortune of finding each other. Love, laughter, passion tinctured their days. Life was blissful.
Four years ago:
He explored new ventures at work; frequent travels became a part of his life, and the heavy work load began eating into his time with her. She tried to be understanding, vainly convincing herself that this phase won’t last long. But she was wrong. As time went by, the tenderness and love that marked the initial years of their relationship vanished. He seemed like a man possessed to achieve the heights of success at any cost, even his marriage. She tried to talk it out with him, remind him of his responsibility towards her; but to no avail. She expressed her desire of having a baby, but he didn’t have time to take care of a child at this stage in life. He called it nagging and said she was too insecure and dependent on him. He considered her lack of ambition a shame, and ridiculed her for being “just a housewife”, nagging and creating obstacles at her husband’s work. The insensitiveness that marked his remarks that day convinced her of how much he has changed; the man she had grown to love so deeply seemed to have disappeared all of a sudden. She got a job, and started working to fill the void in her life. She worked at a pace that defied fatigue and time, because the deafening silence that prevailed at home, even in the company of her husband filled her with the dread of her life passing away in such horrible monotony, and devoid of the love of the man whose bed she continued to share. Life became stagnant.
A year ago:
She had met Arjun at work, the new trainee under her. He was a couple of years younger than her, but she couldn’t help blush each time he set his impish gaze on her. He was attracted to her and he didn’t try to conceal it, which made her more resolute to avoid familiarity with him. But the more you try to resist something, the more it plagues your every waking moment. She found herself charmed by his youthful enthusiasm, infectious laughter, and his eagerness to listen to her. They talked for long at work, and slowly the meetings shifted to venues outside of work. And even though they shared a platonic relationship, she found herself concealing these meetings from her husband. Friendship serendipitously transitioned into love and soon they were inseparable. He cherished her, and it awakened new emotions and passions in her. Soon the dual lives she led with her husband and Arjun became a burden. She wondered why she was holding onto a marriage when her husband considered her as a piece of furniture, and refused to acknowledge that she harbored dormant feelings of love and care towards him. But as Arjun lay sleeping in her arms, the silence of the night breathed a new whiff of love in her dreary life. She decided to leave her husband. Life was about to change soon.
She waited for her husband to say something. Nothing came. She tried to justify to herself the circumstances that led to her infidelity. This time it didn’t sound convincing to even her. The hurt in her husband’s eyes seemed to have erased her former convictions about her relationship with Arjun. It was the longest night of her life, and in the morning her husband left for work. She packed her bags and drove off to Arjun’s home. Cocooned in his arms, she told him about the previous night and then about her pregnancy. The way his body tensed on this bit of news, made her instantly realize that the worst is far from over, it is yet to come. The numbing silence that greeted her this time didn’t shock her. It was as if deep in her heart she always knew and feared this possibility. After what seemed like ages, Arjun tried to calmly explain to her how he wasn’t ready to start a family, or even get married. She nodded and left his home. This can’t be happening to her, this is not how her life was supposed to turn out. She didn’t know where she was driving, and when she finally stopped the car; she saw that she had driven herself home, the only place she had associated with love and comfort. When her husband lied next to her that night, she turned towards him. No one spoke a word. And then the tears came, as the unspoken apologies poured out of their hearts, the regret of the years lost, mourning the setback their love suffered. She waited, wondering whether he could ever love her again; and this time he put his hand over hers and smiled. They embraced, remembering and renewing their love. This time the silence of the night spoke of realization, and an unspoken promise.
Brisk Wind not Warm Breeze
Break of Dawn not Darkness of Dusk
Long Walk not Fancy Wheels
Uplifting Melody not Syrupy Love Song
Companionable Silence not Constant Chatter
Finger Food Platter not French Cuisine
Open Sky not Suffocating Spaces
Exploring Places not Candlelit Dinner
Loud Laughter not Forced Humor
Spontaneity not Calculated Moves
Quality of Time not Quantity of Time
Entwined Fingers not Groping Hands
The Kid in Him not The Macho Male
Creating Exhilarating Moments not Anticipating Sensual Moments
Genuine Words not Deceptive Promises
Shy Glances not Incessant Staring
Goofy not Grave
Genial, Never-ending Conversations not Frigid, Formal Talks
Lingering Contentment not Lingering Regrets
There are times in our life when we bump into a stranger with whom we want to make a connection, share a word or two, but with the frenzied pace of the world we live in, it’s nearly impossible. Who has the time to stop by and chat when there are more important things going on…money to earn, exams to give, travels to take, family to raise. And then God plays a mischievous trick, adding some flavour to our boring, routine lives. And we’ve one of those bluemonic experiences that’s called “serendipity”, a fortunate accident. One of those incidents least expected but leaving us with a lingering feeling of contentment long after it’s over.
I remember the first time I met him. He was my cousin’s friend and my cousin introduced me to him as a spoiled brat of a sister. He grinned at the remark. And the smile…it started my serendipity! It was on an autumn morning; warm, cozy atmosphere due to hustle and bustle going on in our home for my cousin sister’s upcoming wedding. People jostling about running wedding errands…but strangely they had a smile while they carried out their tasks. Maybe it was the festive mood or maybe it was my imagination because I had started seeing everything through rose-colored glasses!
I was a confused kid of fifteen then (it’s a different issue that I’m still confused about most things)…looking at the hectic activity all around me. Amidst all the frenzy, I saw him. A feeling, as never before, took hold of me. I have a porous soul and he osmosed into me. Every nerve, every sense reached out towards him.
And ever since that moment for the rest of the days till the wedding, I carried him with me. Always. “Is this love?” I wondered. I couldn’t define it. Because I along with every other human being, can only feel it. He devoured my every waking moment and reined my dreams. But the weight of this intangible, invisible thing called love didn’t weigh me down. In fact, it uplifted me…every time I thought about him. I was scared that X-Rays can detect his 6 feet frame wrapped in 6 inches of my heart! I didn’t want anyone to know. He was mine, my own treasure. He was so much a part of me, I was becoming him. Dreamy-eyed, stupid grin…I was a sight!
My cousins sensed something was amiss. Maybe it was the idiotic grin plastered on my face 24/7 that gave away the state of my mind. But all those feelings faded into nothingness. He never knew. It was a wordless first meeting. Perhaps, back then he didn’t even acknowledge my existence. I’m one of those persons who tend to blend into the crowd quite well and go unnoticed. And my emotions when it came to love had always been controlled, very controlled. I walked past him, stood next to him, gave him a bored look without a trace of him knowing what he was doing to me. I could never take the risk of him knowing it ever. I would be doomed. Ridiculed in his eyes. I wasn’t afraid he would hate me. The opposite of love isn’t hate, it’s indifference. And I wouldn’t have been able to tolerate his indifference.
A week went by. The wedding was over. My cousin left for her honeymoon. And here I was experiencing the first brush of love or infatuation, whatever it was! He never knew how happy he had made me unknowingly. The shy glances, the knowing smile, laughing uncontrollably at my “not so funny” jokes. I loved everything about him. I must have been so obvious at times. And even if he had sensed it, he didn’t show it.
We met again, long after my crush sank into oblivion and my world no longer revolved around his smile! We talked a lot, met often. He read voraciously and that created a bond between us. A friendship had begun. He got a job, moved to another city. I got busy with my studies. We kept in touch through the occasional phone call or email. Few months back, he called me to share the news that he’s getting married. I’m writing this on the eve of his wedding thinking about the “fortunate accident” that had occurred in another wedding few years back. Strange are the ways of God bringing us reasons to smile, memories to cherish in ways we least expect. So, be open to every little experience of life. I’ve an ear-to-ear grin now reminiscing about something.
FICTION: Written in December,2006 for the college fest literary event