Bookmark #445

Never before was I so happy, continually happy till July. It has been a blank space to rest in between battles for most years. July, for me, has always been a ceasefire. I have rested with bouts of drinks in the sun, brunches, lunches, and laughter. In the rainy envelope of the month when nothing happens, over the city where nothing ever happens, I have spent the past few days preparing for what is to come. Naturally, it is beyond me to predict whatever comes next, but something eventually arrives, and that is life. We must always look forward to things changing because they do so without our say-so, even if we don’t want them to, especially then.

I spent a good chunk of last evening doing nothing, revelling in my inaction. I sat with the doors to my balcony and my heart open alike. The flat seemed to have been cut off by a sheath of falling water. No sound from outside could interrupt my moment of languor, for there was no sound at all. There was just the drops tapping; it seemed to have taken over everything else. There is nothing more pleasurable than being removed from the world temporarily. When the rain stopped pattering, I walked to the coffee shop. I stopped to look at a bougainvillaea that has now covered the sidewalk. The rain had made its leaves so much greener and the flowers so much prettier.

It has been my secret to happiness. To stop and look at things not in the way of just staring at a tree and calling it beautiful but really looking at it: to look at how its branches intertwine, to look at the leaves and their intricate lines, to look at the flowers, all of their parts. Looking at the detail is a gift; not using it is a sin.

While sipping my coffee, I overheard some people talking about how little of it we should drink. I nodded softly in agreement; then, I took another sip with the misplaced guilt of a thief. In my lethargy, I put my head down on the table, losing myself in the music. I got up, paid for the coffee, and left a minute later. Just then, it began to rain.

As I stood to wait for the cab, I realised I was not worried about getting drenched. Worry was the least of my worries. It was still July, after all, and in July, we rest.

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