Maybe it was one Monday morning that his melancholic headache from the last night’s drinking convinced him to quit his job. He used to wear his uniform and go to the bank every day. On the weekends, he went out with his friends and had fun. His salary was not bad; it could pay his bills. He had bought a small flat somewhere in the town.
Everything seemed fine. Everything seemed fine from the outside. For this reason, people were surprised by his decision. “What would you do when you quit? What’s your plan? What do you want?“some people asked.
“ I don’t know!” He replied.
And he really didn’t know. He packed everything, rented his flat, and left for Italy. Somewhere in the south, maybe, near Puglia, where he taught English to some kiddos. One year later, he traveled to southern America. He stayed there for almost a year with his savings and money earned from his house rent.
The next destination was China. He was an English teacher there when he began to explore the new culture and discover its beauty, although the pandemic hit and made him no choice other than to leave. He returned to Italy to study for a master’s, something in management, I think.
I also chose the same university to continue my studies, and once I went to one of my classmates’ apartment, I met him for the first time. I vividly remember that day; we were sitting around a kitchen table and hardly scratching our heads to solve General Relativity exercises when he appeared. He extended his hands toward me, quickly bent his fingers like he wasn’t sure what to do, and said: “ I don’t know if you shake hands!”
By that, he was referring to Coivd. That time we were still wearing masks, and the situation was so bad without any vaccines. I put my fingers on his reluctantly and squeezed gently.
After almost a year, when Padua was nearly a dead city in September, I met him in front of the main church. This time I felt that I actually saw him for the first time.
We were deep in our conversations while walking on cobblestone streets, talking about anything and everything. When I looked at my watch, I realized it was past midnight, but we were still not done. It felt like neither he nor I was willing to leave. A friend of mine was looking at us from the other side of the street. She later told me with a smile: “ it seems something is going on between you two.”
“ It’s not what it may look like. We’re just talking, not even having eye contact. It’s like we need to say all these words and jump into profound conversations. Like we get detached from anything surrounding us. How can I fall for someone when I even don’t look the person in the eye?” I said to her.
There was not much time left. He was about to leave the city in a couple of days. Maybe that’s why we were not afraid to have such deep talks.
I looked at my watch, it was nearly four in the morning, and we’d been together for more than twelve hours. But still, neither could I go nor him.
We lucked eys, and I looked deeply into his eyes. They were somewhat blueish, like the ocean.