The Postman

He knocked my door one day. He said I got a package filled with pictures and an invitation. I asked him where it came from. He didn’t respond.

I am only a postman. He said. I thought it would be you who would open the envelope and see who sent you this. 

I smirked. I opened the envelope and I got several blank pictures and a blank invitation. The sender didn’t wrote its name at the back of the envelope.

What do I do with these? I asked him. He waved at me and went away. He said that there were more mails he had to deliver. 

Standing Behind

There was a train station. Some people came and went away by their train, some people waved their hands to those who went away. Some stood still while shouting their last greetings and some stood in silent while waving their hands.

There were some who went ahead on red carpet under small gateway. There were also some who stood beside the red carpet while clapping their hands. There were some who stood behind people who were in front, and kept their mouth shut.

Some people loved Love is the Air and some loved Night played by piano. Some listened to the music while running, holding hands, dancing, or embracing each other company in a party. Some played the music itself in theater and became rich and famous. Some started the music inside their heads and began to withdraw from reality.

Expression shows everything, including lies. Some would agree and be honest with themselves. Some would disagree and began to mimic some weird expressions. Some would neither agree nor disagree while displaying nothing on their emotionless face.

What a robot. Born as human but lived as a machine.

Bye.

Rain Op – 6

What was on his mind? No one knew. The only thing happened back then was that he had been running for hours. No one knew how he got that stamina. Autumn was almost over and his breath was practically a fog. Inside his right pocket was a picture with which he ran through the city looking for anything in that picture.

Inside his bag were several pair of clothes, a notebook, a laptop set, stationary set, spare glasses with cleaning kit, phone adapter, and a print out of plane ticket. He didn’t intend to go home afterwards. The ticket was for northern side of the continent. His plane would leave in just ten hours. He had to finish whatever he was doing before then if he wanted to catch the plane.

Two years, who in the right mind would do that such thing? The coffee master said while cleaning a glass. A moment had been done, a vow had been spoken, a promise had been made. Nothing would change that. The coffee master thought that he had learned his lesson. But he hadn’t.

What really happened in Reykjavík? Do you really think that everything happened in Reykjavík was real? Are you really sure? He asked the boy who ran before the boy set off in the morning. The boy was sure of what he was about to do. His eyes displayed emptiness and yet a strong motivation to set things right. Whatever that was.

The senses which were accustomed to dimmed room could notice things people would normally ignore. Dry and fragile red rose, worn out insignia, tired eyes, weak voice, noisy head, eyes that had held tears for years, he knew all too well the boy’s emotions and anger. For he was once too a human.

Bienvenue, monsieur. Another customer came and ordered. Un café allongé, s’il vous plait. The customer ordered while wondering his words. The customer wore plain suit and he didn’t seem to bring a suitcase. He was just back from office hours, it seemed. His eyes looked tired and his hair was all messed up. The suit looked nice, thought, didn’t seem broken or wrinkling. After a while, the coffee served. Long black as he had ordered, without sugarThe room wasn’t crowded, in fact, the room was never crowded. Not all people come since not all people might see the sign outside. The coffee master seemed to be all picky about his customer.

After several customers, sun had gone and the moon started to appear. She was so hideous, hiding behind thick clouds while her shining ray of light reflected on water surface. The rain began to pour the city. One said that the city was even more beautiful under the rain. They couldn’t agree more.

The coffee master wondered what happened to the boy who appeared before dawn that day. He set off just after the sunrise. After paying for his coffee, he paid his greetings to the coffee master and went off to the tower. Although it was visible from the room, the distance was quite far.

Rain Op – 5

It was raining again. It was night like any other when public transportation had ceased its operation. A plane had landed earlier. Time was at 0300 for the plane was at 0230. The immigration office was quick.

I saw him walking out from the airport. His travel bag seemed heavy. Made out of grey canvas with single strap, strong and waterproof yet light, he thought his belongings weren’t that much inside that bag. Trees were leave-less. Wind was getting colder. Night spanned longer. He thought of a cup of coffee so he walked to a place nearby recommended by his old contact.

The bell rang as the door was opened.

Bienvenue, monsieur.

He grabbed a stool and sat next to the table before the drink-master. He didn’t speak the language and at the time, he was too tired to think of one. As the master preparing a menu for another customer, he looked on the menu, thinking of finding something of his fancy.

Excusez-moi, parlez-vous anglais? Je ne parle francais.

Ah, you must be him. Sorry for not noticing you earlier. I’ve thought you’d never be here since setting your foot in this country would only make you vulnerable. I take it you would order the usual?

Yes, please.

Then drink master proceed to create his customer usual order. the drink master gathered the ingredients as his customer observed. Black coffee powder wasn’t on the table. He, the customer, thought that the black coffee would be available on from the machine nearby.

He contacted me about your departure from Saarbrucken but I didn’t expect you to come this late. When was your plane?

Later the drink master took a cinnamon and ground it into powder. He also took some vanilla and milk. Instead of adding sugar, he chose honey, just a little. Then he presented his making. I thought it tasted good, didn’t see his face making weird expression.

He’s fine and still makes some weird mixes. There was some invitation I had to attend to before getting here. Never thought you’d be still open at this hour.

We always open for our friends.

He sipped his cup, letting warm and sweet sensation spread along his throat. He looked at this watch and realized that he still had several hours to spend before hitting the tower. He pulled a picture from his pocket. The date told us that the picture was taken around two years ago. Two years could make all the differences. He wondered why he took this task. The coffee master was already on the other side of the table paying his greeting to a leaving customer.

There is a room on first floor he likes to use if he stays here for a vacation. It wouldn’t make much of vantage point but the view is nice. This is a sky floor after all. You can use it.

The coffee master spoke to him out of nowhere while cleaning a glass with both of his hands. Behind him, he could see the tower with its glory. The ornamental lights were bombarding the tower with lights so blinding that at rainy night, you still could see the view. He nodded and after saying thank you, he proceeded upstairs while bringing his cup.

The room was spacious. He put his cup on the table near the windows. After laying down his travel bag on the corner, he sat down and started to sip his cup. Time passed and it was 0400 and the dawn should appear at any moment. Rain in latest months of the year, night was indeed longer than usual. His cup was already empty. He pulled again that picture, turned it around, and read the message behind.

The message was written with blank ink and smudged. It was almost unreadable. He recalled his memory in Reykjavik two years ago on a hotel lounge when he ordered lemon and soda sweetened with honey and cooled with ice. It happened as if it was just yesterday.

Did that really happened? From this place to Reykjavik, the time, the distance wasn’t that short. Not to mention the fare. How did it happen in the first place?

The door opened. The coffee master entered the room with a liter or two thermos of his drink. He startled a bit when the master sat down in front of him and poured a drink to his cup. He later gazed to the distance, enjoying the city under shower.

It’s on the house. The coffer master responded to his expression. It’s been a long time since we talked last time. At least, let me be a good host while waiting the sun to come up. My watch posed at 0450. So, there is still time before sunrise.

As the master drank from his cup, he took his worn out insignia. That was of steel as well as what the tower was made of. He held that insignia firmly while gazing to the distance. The tower shone brightly and the rain got even harder. Clear view was barely affordable. The temperature dropped a little and he tightened up his turtleneck sweater. Then he drank his coffee again before it got cold.

He looked at his wristwatch. It was modern watch, a quartz, not mechanical. He tends to forget things, including wounding his watch. The battery had been changed just before his arrival at the airport. The strap was leather colored in brown like the original color. It wasn’t smooth because it’s worn out but still sturdy. The bezel was also made of steel and several lines corresponding to minute counts were forged around it. It wasn’t water resistant and might become rusty if exposed to water as he began to notice the weather outside just became heavier. He could read basic Roman numeral but he preferred Arabic. So did he with his dial.

The room was dimmed. The main light wasn’t turned on. The master said he would love to let his old eyes resting by putting them in less bright environment and looking at the infinite distance. The doctor said that by letting your eyes focus on infinite distance, the muscles were relaxed, especially those with lenses. That would decrease the risk of having myopia. This he understood perfectly. He didn’t know the time since his watch had neither phosphorus on its hands nor light behind the bezel and appreciated the master for telling him the time. It was a simple watch after all.

The two sat in silence.

Among the Dead

I can barely face the truth that a friend has now gone. Together with another friend of mine, we visited his house hoping to surprise him of our schoolmate wedding nearby. Instead of giving surprise, we got one from his elder brother.

Two days later, an old friend and I set off to see his tombstone. His elder brother told us about the cemetery nearby. We found the location next to our old school. We were used to study there. Well, playing was more like it.

After two hours of searching, we found him. Such an uneasy feeling started to gather around my stomach when looked his name written on the stone. Couldn’t believe he’s gone. My friend began to clean up the grave by pulling some grass and fallen leaves. I only stood watching the stone from the front until my friend reminded to sit.

While sitting, old friend and I talked about how he died, his last status updates, his sickness, and his youth. We are not necessarily old but we remember our foolishness back in elementary school. I could not afford to take a picture of his tombstone. So, instead, I took the sky above our passed away friend.

He died at the hospital after holding on for so long with his blood problem. You still remember that he usually went to hospital just to have his blood checked, yes? Back then I just thought that he had severe anemia-kind-of-thing problem. We’re just kids. And he hadn’t got his 23rd birthday. I forgot when the last time I checked on him was. From his feed, I gathered that his life was improved. He wasn’t that weak, sleepy guy anymore. He’s active and friendly. Even attended some sort of Japanese festival. Well, at least he doesn’t need to check himself to the hospital now. He is at peace, I like to assume that way. Hopefully.

We left him around noon and bought some cool drinks around the school before heading home. Questions and regrets were crowded inside my head. I thought my friend felt the same too.

Bye old friend. We’ll be joining you soon.

And we went home.

Mosque

A mosque, somewhere in Padang, Indonesia

Taken in January in year while having a short holiday for a friend’s happy wedding, looking at the mosque ceiling.

Does Not Exist

image

Empty.