An unforgettable heart-rending Farewell to a beloved friend at airport
|A MOVING FAREWELL
The sky is overcast with dense dark clouds all over. Nancy, looks through the window, wonders gazing the swarm of birds flying past the sky free. The tearful eyes of the clouds, weep uncontrolled ,pouring a flood of tears on the body of earth to clean the sins the humans perpetrate on her ever since they came. Birds fly in boundless ecstasy enjoying the cool breeze past their wings and body.
The joys and bumps through their friendship marching past her minds eye , she tries to console her heart to keep cool, to bid a joyful farewell, to cherish every moment of his presence by her side. She likes to fly high in the sky like the birds that fly all over, up and down, hither and dither with unbound joy in the cool breeze of love. With these thoughts crowding her mind, she drives to Airport to bid that memorable farewell none so far has given to a lover!
John, her intimate boyfriend , is all set to take leave of her, to return to his home town abroad. On completion of the local assignment he is being called back by his overseas employer. Many of their colleagues have come to the airport to give him a warm send off. Waiting for the duo they are all into groups talking about his warm company, witty jokes, the girls around him, the debonair attire to praise, the warm friend in him. Nancy with her closer group of colleagues wait at the entrance eagerly looking to his arrival. As he appears they tease her “ Look Nancy, your prince is here, dropping in!” …”Here comes the hero of Nancy”. She, for a moment thrilled to receive him, runs up in open arms for a warm hug!
Overwhelmed by the thought of the inevitable, the impending separation, they look to each other with swollen eyes, listlessly recollecting their memorable association. Her eyes spoke the painful separation for ever.
“John my dear, is it a must that you return?” her mellow voice lingers in his ears, “No, it’s not the only option I believe”. With heavy heart he smiles muttering “how I wish it could be so!”
A long silence greets them as they sat at the airport lounge.
“Looks like, sweetie” John mumbles “the world is jealous, doesn’t want us to be together any further”
Bang comes a loud announcement blurting out the flight status to those ready to take off, those getting delayed and the ones being checked in. Nancy is happy, John’s flight is delayed, gets some more time to spend with him. Walking towards the coffee shop, they pass through assorted type of people waiting, some are immersed in looking into their laptops, others lying down snoring, yet some serious ones restless watching the monitors crawling out the flight status.
As Nancy brought mugs of coffee they choose a remote cozy corner to spend time lazily, away from the crowd. Pointing to the family sitting at the table at other corner, she exclaims “We too would look like them loaded with naughty kids, bags of hand bags, child stroller, had we the opportunity to continue our ……”
“Yes, yes, that’s why I’m made to leave you behind, is it?” John replies painfully.
Another spell of silence engulfed them, though both were haunted with the memories of their association.
Sipping coffee she recollects the day John reported to work, a shy chubby boy with well-groomed dark hair, a gently smiling face that anyone could be envy of! Getting introduced, he met her at the coffee kiosk, at their work place. Clad in bright light yellow chudithar with a contrasting dark red bordered dupatta, her Indian attire imprinted in his mind an unforgettable impression. Her mellow voice, sweet looks, bright shy face with a smile spoke many things in his ears that he couldn’t forget that meet for ever.To their pleasant surprise both belonged to the same team, had to work on the same project!
She slid into her memory lane recollecting their business trip abroad together, the holidays they spent going round sightseeing places and the long hours they spent on the beach.
On that Sunday morning walk along the beach, a marathon walk away from the crowds that John whispered in her ears “Honey, how about our visit to your parents, would they welcome our friendship? …” Surprised, Nancy paused a little and replied “Why not, they welcome you with open arms, we can make it during our next holiday if it’s convenient for us”. That’s how her parents met John the first time since he reported for duty.
The warm moments they spent at the theatre, week end outings, the great joy when he won the snooker medal, the sweet moments they spent together in recent past would all become a history soon, they were trying to avoid recollection, lest the pain of separation would mar the farewell. But their memories lurk in mind quite often compelling them to recall.
It was that day watching the hindi movie, sitting inside the theatre in its darkness,highly excited John held her palm tight as if he doesn’t want to lose her. In the scene, heroine was in tears, hero compelled by parents to marry another girl of their choice, was about to board the train back home. Charged by it, highly excited John shouts “No, he is wrong, stop him…….” plunging the viewers around in laughter! John relates the scene now with their present situation similar to it, bursts in laughter aloud with her, exclaims “ what a mockery , we are now in exactly similar situation”
Nancy’s parents’ adoration for John’s gentle behaviour, smiling personality left them dumbfounded when they got the news that he is returning to his country. They run down to Airport anxiously to see him off.
Everyone who came to see off John were mute spectators to the heart wrenching moment he waves at them all as he disappears in to the security check area. Nancy, was waving back to him as tears rolled down her cheeks. Her cry went unheard off into the din of the people running around amidst loud announcements over the airport addressing system!