A view from afar


I was on my way home last night when I realized I didn’t have my cellphone with me, so I had to make a U-turn back to the office. When I got there, I saw this girl in the lobby all by herself; she smiled at me when she saw me and I reflected the gesture. I left my cellphone on my desk, hiding beneath the magazine I was reading before I left the office. I remember now where I saw the girl in the lobby, she works in the fashion department. She was still there when I came down. ‘Are you waiting for someone?’ I asked in curiosity.

‘Yes,’ she said, reticently.

‘Oh, okay. Goodnight.’ I waited in my car.  For a reason I didn’t know, I wanted to see who she was waiting for. You can say curiosity got the best of me. She works in the fashion department and mingles with expensive people. Who knows who she was meeting? It could be a fashion designer or a male model. It was past eight in the evening and the girl was leaving, alone. Poor girl, she got stood up, I thought.

‘Do you need a ride?’ I bellowed.

‘Going this way?’ she asked, pointing to the east.

We introduced ourselves and talked about work. She even invited me to the upcoming fashion event where they will be giving away freebies. ‘I’m sorry he didn’t come,’ I pried.

‘She did.’

‘Oh, I didn’t see anyone back there.’ I sounded so natural but my brain felt like I’d a concussion, my heart pumped so fast, I wanted to find out more.

‘It was the girl in green dress. I wait for her every night in the lobby, she always walks that path. This is all I’m allowed to do, observe from afar. The last girl I confessed to despised me and avoided me. From that day on, I promised not to tell anyone about my feelings, afraid to be rejected. Do you wanna hear a silly story?’

“Shoot!” I said, bracing myself for more shocking discoveries.

‘I was with some friends leisurely strolling at the mall when one of my friends shrieked when she saw this guy she’s been admiring for almost a year now. The other girls started teasing her, then my turn came, I saw the girl I have been admiring for more than a year now but couldn’t react, as usual. What would they say if I told them “Oh, my gosh! That’s my crush!” and they would see a girl? So I kept silent but inside I was screaming. After a few rounds we decided to stay in Starbucks and there she was again, my crush. Something happened that particular time, I didn’t only tell my friends but I actually pointed to them the girl. The girls huddled and whispered “Where? Who?” I couldn’t believe my ears when one of them said, “Gosh, he’s gorgeous!” But I realized she wasn’t referring to the girl instead, she was talking about the guy who was standing next to the girl, ordering. “That’s the guy?” one of them asked. “Yes, that’s him the love of my life,” I answered heavily. The girl left, but I followed her. I told my friends my mom called and I needed to come home. I walked behind her without allowing myself to be caught. I made the most of the rare opportunity to be with her, at least for me it felt like we we’re strolling together. Those were one of the happiest times of my life, however tormenting they were. I stopped when I saw her approached this guy. She kissed him. My heart sunk. My eyes were teary. Time’s up for me.’

When I got home, I was so tired and hungry but I couldn’t get this beautiful young girl’s story off my mind. It made me feel so guilty for laughing at this teenage boy I happened to notice when I went to pick up my daughter in school one afternoon. He stood at one corner and looked around him, when he was sure the coast was clear he hurriedly dove into his knapsack and to my surprise took out a pair of open toe pump. It must be tough for people like him and the girl to be living in this judgmental society where straight people – with crooked brains – always geared up to attack them with insult.
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