26 June 2010
THE DEARY DARK AFTERNOON
A STRANGER WITH A FAMILIAR FACE... AND A BODY FROM WHICH MY MIND WAS ABSOLUTELY SEPARATED
I remembered scruples, intense morals back at home, recalled with a pain of almost nostalgic regret that this was undoubtedly the most wonderful but bitter experience. My entire childhood life; as a girl I was as innocent as a lark, like everyone intended me to be and I was too naive to even understand a hurdle existed in my secret place. Oh, I'm getting ahead of myself. That's not what I am here to talk about.
I no longer knew myself, no longer knew if I was still in the present world or that I had crossed over to the world beyond. It was as though, finally, my life had been turned upside down with my sight lost for several minutes. Sermons heard in my twenty six years of life was proved worthless, as I asked God if He had abandoned me and there was no light to show me the way out of this formless blackness in which I found myself. This experience I'm about to share with you happened to me. It's a thing about being too much of an homely girl who never got out to any where except from school-to-tutorials-to-church services. Though there were frequent trips to theaters-amusement parks-family friends birthday parties - with someone watching my back and my every move. Away from my family, I went to another big city which was where I had been born to make a new life. And this isolated life style as you may call it has become part and parcel of me. Quite a few friends, no clubbing, no parties, except on few occasions when I was forced down to some wedding ceremonies with my few friends threatening to desert me if I don't come along. It's always book-book-book!
On Saint Valentine's Day, I left my little apartment to join a boyfriend of mine, a social worker, who had an offer from a group from United States to bring homeless children from his organization to watch movies at the city Centre Mall, and recieve lots of gifts.
"Aunt Dammy, Aunt Dammy!"
The kids adored me because of my absolute concern with their problems. The reason I was invited to come along in the first place. The high, harsh sun nailed the afternoon, to the city. Still, that didn't deter the flurry of activities that was usually attached to Saint Valentine's Day. We arrived the venue; as we entered eye catching, beautiful things came to view and then I came face to face with my first terror. I looked around the building it was circled with an Escalator which I called moving stairs in my crazy mind. I've never come face to face with it though I had seen it in movies and had read about it in novels. How was I supposed to climb through successfully? My heart began to thump loudly. Arms clasped across my belly, and gaze focused upon the steps I watched nervously, gesturing around me at hordes of chattering Pedestrians streaming in and out of the Mall. No one would have believed that a gorgeously dressed and beautiful lady like me couldn't climb the steps and that was why I remained in a spot. A pair of shoulder length earrings and ankle strap heels that lifted my ankles up to my throat.
"Did I say heels?"
Precisely, the problem I had. I could just imagine myself tripping over in those heels the moment I set my feet on the escalator and tumbling over. I noted some pedestrians amused expression as they passed by and took a second look at me. I swear they must thought me a village lass, just beautifully dressed up. My tension increased when I discovered that the people I came with had left me. Gosh, how was I supposed to make it back home if I miss them? I had no penny on me. Now I had to make a decision or else I would be stranded! It is not right to think that I had lived a good girl all these years only to be this highly, humiliated! Not knowing what to do instantly, I walked the gigantic Mall in case I could spot a staircase, unfortunately, there was none to my dismay. This confusion was unlike anything I had ever experienced I mustered my courage eventually, and mounted the escalator and the first foray sent me stumbling profusely. And if it wasn't for the pedestrian directly behind my back, who held me, I would have rolled over and landed back on the floor. With so much eyes on me, incessantly, I breathed a sigh of apprehension as the escalator lifted me to the theater floor. I had mounted, but how on earth was I to get down? But of course, I staggered while stepping off the escalator. With face glistening from perspiration, I scanned the theater hall. My boyfriend, who led us here was waiting for me with my own pop-corn and the other goodies he got for me. Just as I was about relaying my encounter to him, he disappeared into the theater after handling me my stuff, like some flashes of lightning that crossed my vision briefly.
The theater turned out to be my second terror. I had entered the theater blindly, and now I couldn't make out anything. I turned in panic, hands outstretched forward before me into the darkness like a blind man who has lost his walking stick. Walking unsteadily on my legs like the child who was about to learn to take his first step in life, I looked for something to hold on to. But there was nothing. No light showed any where. It was as though I had crossed to the world beyond. No voices, yet people were in the hall, no footsteps, nothing stirred. I wanted to run back outside, but there was no open door. Every where was eerily dark. I shed hot tears profusely for I was greatly terrified. What kind of experience was this? I was supposed to be in a theater where every other people would be but it happened I was lost in the dark of a theater! A sudden grip on my wrist made every frightened part of my body scream out loud, and I wanted to break into a frantic run but the grip on me was firm.
"Dammy, what is the matter with you?"
Quietly, asked the voice with awe. I recognized it at once. It was my friend's voice. I looked up wildly anxious, searching for his face, and gradually, there was light. I could see his face clearly. He led me to the roll where they were all seated. God! This shame would never wear off!
While they all enjoyed the movies, my mind was on how to go through the escalator the second time. Hours gone by and everything was over. The moment I appeared, a Security Guard came beside me, after a quick curtsy to me, he took hold of my hand and gently showed me how to ply the escalator without any fuss. So, they all had been watching!? What a note of embarrassment. Sure as hell, they had me in their surveillance cameras to have been waiting for me to emerge from the theater. I left the Mall in low spirit swearing on a stack of bibles never to make such an outing again. Is that really the solution people? Your feed back count.
Quite funny encounter, right?