Sunday, September 13, 2009


There's a playground close to my house - but, due to my working hours, I've only seen it empty so far. And something about it bothers me beyond description; an empty playground encloses, for me, the saddest of all images: empty swings.
Have u ever seen one? I mean, really SEEN it? Gently swinging to the wind at times, and at others standing still in time, waiting for that which brings meaning to its existence. (But aren't we all?)
Such an image makes me feel hollow - and I absolutely hate it. We're supposed to be feeling beings. But every now and then I feel a complete void. There are certain moments when I feel completely numb, when I try to name that feeling, and only find emptiness in there. I try to grasp at it, and it eludes me.
It always happens when I see empty places. Places that once were not empty, that were once full of me - and now are just... places. Nude of what made me love them.

For example, the door of my building.
Every morning I go out the door and think to myself that never again will G. show up from that direction, riding his bicycle all the way from Laranjeiras just to see me. Wonder how long this morning feeling will last. (Will he be able to ride a bike there?...)

And that classroom, where I teach everyday.
The very same G. will never sit there again, right in front of me, paying attention to my every move, staring at me with those ridiculously drawing green eyes that did not allow me to look at anyone else - except, of course, that I had to; pointedly giving his opinion on just about everything (and, most of the time, blaming it on religion, whatever issue was being discussed at the time). Nor will he make his unexpected jokes with his blazé airs and pale smile. Hope everything works out well for him on the other side of the world. All in all, I think he deserves it (for all of us deserve to find ourselves). L. won't be there as well, standing shyly aside, blushing easily at my jokes, with his wholehearted laughter and opinions-in-formation, given in his perfect English, making me proud at every word uttered. He will, I'm sure, get where he wants to - he just needs to be patient. U know, the whole talk about Rome and how long it did NOT take to be built... S. won't either. (Calling her S. made me feel like in a "Gossip Girl" book/episode...). No more S. with her calm, good-humored, well thought-of opinions - which usually were the exact opposite of G's. Will she go back to England someday? Will she have a child? Will she do well on her Master's?

When I get to work, I gotta pass by M.R.'s office, where she'll never sit again - completely focused on whatever it was she was doing, and yet, capable of answering phones, giving information, telling people off and organizing cards, all at the same time. Making her presence undoubtedly felt, without going through the trouble of saying a single word. Being strict, and loved all the more for that. Being kind and protective of you, if need be. Being a leader like few.
(My lack of belief stops me from believing she's somewhere better. But then again, I do not believe she's nowhere. And my lack of curiosity stops me from wondering where she actually is.)

There's a certain table at work, of which head Na. does not sit at anymore - with her big smile and her cheerful "Wooohoooo!", that both amazed me for its sincerity and at the same time completely drained the little energy I had struggled to pluck up from the very inside of me, in order to teach at 7 in the morning... (lol, if anyone can be fine wherever they are, she's the one! I worry not about her).

Every week I have to drop by my old college. Even though I hate that place now, I used to love it like a home. But everything that made it home to me is also gone. And the good memories I had with them, well, they're all covered in shit now, to be quite honest. Never again will Ni. and I have lunch there - nor wander around the halls, skipping boring classes. Nor will he keep me company while I wait for my bus to Laranjeiras.
(He, too, deserves to be okay - but only after figuring out an awful lot by himself. And I actually doubt he will...)

Speaking of Laranjeiras: there's a certain window from which I won't lean out again - nor my grandma or anyone else in the family. A window which had been in the clan for almost 50 years, out of which all of us were stopped from leaning when toddlers - from my 55 year-old dad to my 11 year-old cousin. (And all of them are just fine, thank u very much. In fact, they're in the most blissed state possible to a human being: ignorance. They do not suffer from TMI. Could they be any better off?)

Going down P.A.G. Street is another empty moment, now that J.'s gone. And for me, back then, he was the most important one among them all. (No idea where he is now, he's been to so many places already, in such a little time. But word is he's okay).

And whenever I picture the house I grew up in, the first thing I see is the garage - cute with its red tiles, open and spacious. That was R.'s favorite dwelling. I had only to show up at the other side of the white gate for him to come running like a lightning, all the way from the back of the house, along the garage and straight into my arms, completely dirtying the white t-shirt of my uniform. M. won't open those double doors ever again at the first sound of D.'s car - cus D. does not drive that old piece of junk anymore, and does not park his current one there either (and none of us will ever be quite as okay. Excpet for R., I'm sure he's alright; after all, "All Dogs Go to Heaven").

I wonder where all those people have gone.


Iris H. said...

Oh... where are the pictures? :(

Btw, I saw S. at the Orchid Expo! :D

Rml said...

Oh! Rs, that's "her face"!

Anonymous said...

Keep Swinging!!

RONNY DIAS said...

Funny... I don't usually get to miss people or places like this.
And all of a sudden, I feel sorry for myself!
Thanx a bunch!!