I slept on the flight. The WHOLE time. Wow, that must be the longest nap time ever. The positive thing is, I am wide awake and not groggy, like I usually am after sleeping. I drag the only suitcase that I am carrying effortlessly through the airport looking for an exit. I figured I won't need too many clothes, and I travel light always. People are shocked, more often than not when I tell them that. I mean, Managing Director of Fashion Mart must be too grand a person to travel light, right? But I hate carrying too much, especially when I am going to a dying friend's home where all I have to do is probably be by her side and talk to her all the time.
I decided to take the train to her house. She lived in the suburbs, apparently. She hated suburbs. She was a city person through and through. I wonder what made her live there. I had done a little MapQuest research, so I knew where I was heading. Hell, I even knew what her house looked like thanks to Google Earth. Sometimes, you gotta love technology. However, I will detest cellphones till the end of my existence. No peace of mind. Anyway, taking the train would be fun, I told myself, since I hadn't used public transport since.. well, ages, I guess. The train ride was pretty peaceful and it gave me time to think of the things I would say to her when I see her, things that I couldn't say before. Being the organized person that I was, I decided to make a list on a paper pad that I always carried.
After writing and striking off the list over and over again, the two things that I was sure of was were, a) I would hug her (she loved them, anyway) and b) I would clear out our misunderstandings. But I had no clue how to do that. I sighed and trusted myself enough to leave the decision to Spontaneity. She always knew what to do. Usually. It was an hour long ride and I reached the station from where her house was a five minute walk. I started walking West because I knew her house was in Block S. I found 156 right on the corner of the street. It was a pretty house. It looked like a kind of neighbourhood where you would want to live when you turned sixty, and not thirty two. But maybe, there are some unwritten rules for dying people. I took a huge gulp. Thinking about her dying was uncomfortable for me. So, instead, I pushed the thought away and rang the doorbell.
A melodious chime rang through the house, its echo faintly reaching my ears. A second later there was a sound of the lock turning. I closed my eyes for a fraction of a second murmuring a little prayer (even though I have stopped believing in God). I thought Shar would open the door, but it was some one else. Duh, I told myself, Shar was probably on the bed right now. Carefully, I looked at the beautiful girl standing before me. She looked like an early teenager. She was till a bit too short to be fourteen, but you could see by the brightness of her eyes that she was as lively as any thirteen year old, perhaps. What shocked me was her resemblance to my friend. She looked like a younger, way more beautiful Shar. She frowned suddenly, and I realized that I had been staring too hard, with my mouth wide open.
"Can I help you?" she said, probably thinking that I am a recent divorcee looking for a place to stay.
"Actually, I am here to see Sharon?" I replied, trying to peek into the house. It looked surprisingly well kept. I mean, you wouldn't expect much from thirteen year olds, right? But here she was, taking care of her mother AND keeping the house neat and clean, all single handedly.
"Oh! Aunt Sam?" she exclaimed in surprise, smiling the same wide toothed smile that her mother used to when she was as young, and perhaps even now.
"Oh, you know me!" I said, genuinly surprised that Shar would even mention me to her daughter. So there, one mystery solved, atleast she was not AS mad at me anymore. But then, why would she be? It was her fault, not mine.. Ego. EGO. Go away, I said. I did not need him now. I did not need him ever.
"Yes, I do. Mum talks about you a lot! She'll be so happy to see you, Aunt Samantha!" she smiled again.
I followed her into the house, which was not only neatly kept but had traces of pink in almost every single item. It was SO Sharon. Trust her to make pink out of even black! She led me to the den and turned on the lights. Thankfully, Sharon had chosen to leave this room intact in its own neutral shades of brown and cream. I sat down on the sofa and looked around.
"Yeah, I forced her to let this room be! My friends would totally freak out if this room was pink too!" she laughed.
I was glad that she was different in her choices from her mother, atleast. Shar was my opposite, she had always been. If it was a hot dog for me, she ate salad. If I chose to wear a dress to the party, she always went with jeans. I liked the cute dork, she loved the funny guy. So, technically, her daughter was.. like me..