Mostrando las entradas con la etiqueta uncomfortable. Mostrar todas las entradas
Mostrando las entradas con la etiqueta uncomfortable. Mostrar todas las entradas

lunes, 30 de enero de 2017

Early hours

   For some reason, he wasn’t able to sleep properly, as he would have wanted. Ever since he could remember, his eyes opened automatically very early, always around seven o’clock in the morning. Every single time he tried to keep sleeping, staying in bed and covering himself up with his bed sheets, he failed miserably as his eyes wouldn’t close for anything, no matter how much and how long he tried. When he had something to do late some day, he just woke up that early and then waited.

 If he ever had to wake up earlier than that, then there was no problem. It was over sleeping that was the problem and not the other way around. Certainly, it was a very uncommon thing, but very real nevertheless. Craig, that was his name, had become an expert in handling all those hours that he normally had to spare on days he didn’t have to work or on weekends. He tried to use them for exercising or doing some of the things he never got to do when he was busy like his taxes and stuff like that.

 It was this early, once he went cycling around his neighbourhood, when he met someone that had a problem with his bike. His name was Rick and he his bicycle on the lawn of a park, trying to figure out what was wrong with it. As Craig had gathered a considerable amount of expertise related to cycling, he decided to stop and help the guy, carrying the bike to a near gas station where they could check the tires for any problems. Indeed, the issue was that something had cut through one of them.

 Rick felt really silly and blamed his accident to the fact that he hadn’t been sleeping much. That small phrase caught Craig’s attention, who rapidly responded by smiling and confessing he rarely slept too much, instead doing things like cycling to spend the time. Rick was very intrigued by that, so he asked Craig if he would like to join him for some lemonade while walking towards his house. There was a place nearby that made an excellent, sweet, lemonade.

 They each bought one and talked about everything as they sipped lemonade and walked with their bicycles on the side. Craig realized, once he got home, that he had practically neglected to actually exercise that day. But he didn’t mind because of two reasons. The first was because he didn’t cycle to exercise as such but to get distracted and spend time he didn’t want to waste. And the other reason was because he had enjoyed Rick’s company too much and would have wanted to spend even more time with him. It had been a nice thing to ask for his phone number.

 He had to wait a week, until next Saturday, to receive a text message on his phone. Rick wanted to know if he was going to go out on his bicycle again, as he had already fixed his bike’s tires and he was looking forward doing it correctly this time. Craig wrote him that he was indeed coming out with his bicycle and that he would love to meet to exercise together. Sure enough, Rick was on the front door of Craig’s building very early on Sunday, yawning a lot but with a smile.

 That day, they both really exercised a lot. They went very far, some ten kilometres away. There they looked for some place to have something to drink and then they came back to Craig’s apartment. As the only thing to drink they had found was a store they had bought some water bags from, Craig decided to invite Rick to his apartment, for a proper breakfast. Rick refused at first, saying he still had to go to his house, but as Craig knew it wasn’t very far, he accepted the invitation.

 The bikes stayed on the basement, behind Craig’s car. On the elevator going up to the apartment, the two men realized they didn’t know what to talk about. They were tired but at the same time they both felt it was necessary to speak, as they were going to spend some more time together that day. But not a word was said in the elevator. On the fifth floor, Craig grabbed his keys from his pocket opened the door. Rick was visibly uncomfortable, as Craig walked stretching his arms into the air.

 They both entered the kitchen and then decided to make omelettes for breakfast. Realizing how tense Rick appeared to be, Craig decided to make the moment very interactive: he would ask the other guy fro every single ingredient for breakfast and Rick would have to look around for it. Surprisingly enough, he was very fast with everything, finding all necessary items in just a few seconds. The game was a very smart way to break the ice and initiate a proper conversation.

 As the eggs cooked, Craig explained Rick everything about his rare condition, where he couldn’t sleep past seven o’clock, how he blamed his childhood for it and some funny things that had happened as the years had gone by, during those early hours. Then, it was Rick’s time to talk about himself. He chose to acknowledge the fact that he was very shy but that he was always trying to push himself forward, in order to meet new people. He confessed that was the first time his experiments had actually been successful. Craig proposed a toast with orange juice.

 They spend the morning eating and talking, until they realized the moment was becoming very awkward again. Thankfully, Rick’s phone rang and broke an uncomfortable silence that had settled in. They didn’t write or called each other during the week. But, at least Craig, certainly thought about Rick when his mind wasn’t busy doing something else. He realized he felt something but he didn’t know what it was and it bothered him. So he tried not to think about it too much.

 The next weekend, nothing. Rick didn’t call or sent a text. Nothing at all. That was the first Sunday in a long time that Craig spent in his bed. He decided he was tired of exercising and instead chose to watch an animated movie he had never paid attention to. He surprised himself by doing that, as he wasn’t the type of guy to watch cartoons but he thoroughly enjoyed his morning, complete with a big bowl of cereal and sliced bananas. He felt like a younger self again, for some time.

 That afternoon he decided to go to the supermarket, as his refrigerator was becoming more and more empty. He normally didn’t worry too much about it, as he normally ate outside of the house, but an urge to eat better thing took over him, so Craig decided he wanted to start cooking more. He was on the pasta aisle when he heard a familiar voice. At first, he thought he was imagining it and got very embarrassed with himself because of that, but then he realized it was really happening.

 Slowly, he moved his shopping cart around the corner into the next aisle. There he was: Rick was talking to a small girl. Apparently she was deciding which cereal she was going to buy. The decision was down to a pink box with princess related stuff painted on it, or a red box with a big panda on the front, eating something that looked like tiny chocolate cylinders. The girl grabbed the pink box and hugged it. Rick smiled and then his eyes moved up, to see Craig standing there like a lamp.

 There was no way of pretending he hadn’t been looking so he only waved and smiled. He didn’t come closer; somehow his legs wouldn’t move his body forward. There was a tense moment, in which the only noise was the girl trying to make Rick move from his spot. They didn’t say anything. Craig was the one who moved first, turning around, almost sprinting to the nearest paying point. Once he was at home, he decided that his early hours would never be used to do any exercise again, or at least not one that involved meeting strangers, as if that had anything to do with his embarrassment at the moment.

sábado, 5 de noviembre de 2016

Active dreaming

   When I realized, I was at the beach. But it wasn’t like all other times. This time I was the only person there. My bare feet sunk into the sand as the ocean brought water and foam to the shore. The rhythm of the water was pretty soothing and I couldn’t help but notice the most particular colors in the horizon. The sun was going down and it was a show that deserved to be seen. I felt as if I was the only person allowed to see the beauty of the world and I was thrilled to have been chosen. I sat down on the sand and watched the lights.

 It was beautiful. So much more than anything that I would have seen in other circumstances. I liked to feel the sand on my legs and feet, on my hands as I watched an iridescence in the horizon. It was just like a rainbow forming but not in the sky but there, far in the horizon, over the ocean. It was so weird to be able to see it and to be there in my yellow trunks, the ones I loved to wear every time I actually went to the beach. They were my favorite and, of course, I was wearing them as I saw the most spectacular natural show.

 I knew nothing that I saw was actually real. Not the beautiful colors and tones, not the sand in my hands or even my yellow trunks. My brain had made copies of many experiences and was using them as I slept, replicating memories with some amazing twists. I didn’t mind to be in such a wonderful dream, I wanted to stay there more in order to be able to enjoy once more everything that I had loved before and even actually enjoy it this time. It often happens in real life that you don’t notice the world because of stupid little things.

 That dream was bases on one of the many times I had been to the beach but it also used one memory that I almost never remembered, which was walking by the shore during the winter. It was the only time I saw the beach empty so I guess my brain combined a little bit of each experience to create what I was watching. The show in the horizon, which ended soon enough, was something out of my head. I have no idea how it created all of that beauty but I was glad to have seen it and to have been able to enjoy such a beautiful spectacle.

 I stood up and walked a little bit. The sand was nicer than normal. I realized that my memory of the actual sand of that beach had not been used to create that space. Some memory of another beach had been used for the sand, as it was not as rough or coarse as the actual one that I had felt all over my body when I had visited that urban beach. The sand on which I was walking on came from a memory of some volcanic beach that I had visited many years ago with some friends and with… With someone else I had completely forgotten about until then.

 Of course, he was suddenly there. His face was partly in shadows, as I sadly didn’t remember what he looked like. I did recall he was tall and rather skinny. He wore those exact trunks to the beach, those blue ones that seemed to be too large for him. I remember he was drunk most of the time we were there. I guess that’s why nothing happened: after I rejected him because he was been too annoying, I saw him sneaking into a bedroom with a girl we had met earlier on the beach. That didn’t hurt me but it made me feel I was right about him all along.

 He disappeared from the beach and I decided to keep walking. As I did, building and trees began to appear on the side, just crossing a road. Again, that mix of things was the results of many memories trying to create something I didn’t quite remember. One of the buildings was the one I stayed in during a trip to Barcelona and the other was my hotel in Rio and the park was the one I played in my childhood. Seeing all that together gave me a slight headache so I decided to keep walking, closing my eyes for a short time.

 When I opened them, I was somewhere else. I was still barefoot and actually completely naked. No yellow trunks or any other piece of clothing. And it was happening in the worst place possible: it was my high school’s theater. I ran to the side, behind the curtain, and apparently no one saw me. I looked into the crowd and didn’t recognize anyone. Then again, none of their faces were actually clear and perfect. They were all in shadows. It was obvious that memory was kind of repressed or I just didn’t remember any of them at all.

 Suddenly, a bunch of people appeared on stage and they started doing a dance. Then it clicked: I was in my senior year performance for my physical education class. As I was a really lazy person for sports, and also sucked at them hard, I had entered the girl group where they danced and did rather easy things. It was a very sexist thing to have but I was obviously not against it. It gave me a way to escape the sports and the laughter of all the other guys in high school. So I didn’t mind I had to dance to any type of music.

 Then, we all appeared on the beach and I saw myself perform there, on the sand by the ocean. It was beautiful and it really improved the actual memory, which I never really recalled because I never thought about high school. It had been such a trying moment for me that I just attempted to erase every single memory that had to do anything with that time. Of course, the brain never forgets every single thing and that dance routines, as bad as it was, was one of the memories preserved.

 When the act was finished, they all disappeared and I stayed in the beach alone, walking as the wind moved my hair. I was aware that it was only me who controlled everything that was happening in the dream. I was the one deciding to go to my high school or to stay at the beach or to mix up both things to improve one of the memories. I could have woken up a long time ago but I wasn’t doing that and I had no idea why. What was it? What was I doing there that seemed so important? The past didn’t have any clues or magic for me.

 I decided to go for a swim and ran to the water. I jumped into it and water splashed all over the place. I moved my arms fast, trying to propel myself further into the ocean, farther from the beach than in any other time. I knew I couldn’t get hurt so I forced my body and my mind. When I emerged from the water, I didn’t saw the beach anymore. Instead, I was in a swimming pool I had when I was little. I had fallen into it once, fully clothed but that was not the memory I was in there for. Actually, I didn’t even know if it was a memory.

 No one else beside me was there. I climbed the stairs out of the water and then walked towards the door and opened it. Yes, I entered the house through the kitchen and then the living room. It was amazing that I could remember everything about that house. I loved the bedrooms there and also the small room upstairs as it was just like the secret hideout I had always wanted to have. I was again in my yellow trunk but no water was dripping from them and I was glad that was the case because that place was too precious to mess it up.

 I decided to exit through the front door. On the other side, there was only darkness. I couldn’t see or hear anything but after a while, I did feel something. It was someone else there, with me. We hugged and gently touched each other’s bodies. We then kissed very softly and then more and more until we lay on the invisible ground and made love right there. Everything felt so real; I could almost smell his skin and feel his breathing on my neck. It was perfect but it ended soon enough. A very dim light went on and I could just see a glimpse of his back.

 It was cruel from me to do that to myself. But maybe it had not been me in control all the time. Who knows, maybe something else gets into our dreams with us and plays around with our thoughts and memories. Or maybe it was me and I was just attempting to make a point. Anyway, when I woke up I was really warm and had to drink two glasses of orange juice to compensate for all that walking. And as I did that, I realized I remembered every single thing about the dream. That made me smile.

domingo, 24 de abril de 2016

Turning point

   He walked towards the window and noticed the void was only a few centimeters from his feet. He saw the city, its lights and many smaller figures moving from one side to the other. They could be seen because of the traffic lights and the cars. He imagined, or rather, he asked himself, if maybe there was someone in that entire city that could understand how he felt or what his life was like. But the answer was probably a negative one. He was alone and he had to learn to embrace that or suffer for the rest of his life.

 In his hand, he had the syringe ready to be used. He pressed his hand around it but, somehow, he couldn’t bring himself to do what he always did: inject the client with it so he would sleep longer and then have all the time in the world to rob him of every penny he had. After all, it wasn’t all about two coins. It was about a lot of money that couldn’t be traced once he had done what he knew best. But he just couldn’t do it.

 He was completely naked in front of that window, with a powerful drug in his hand and just couldn’t be the person he had been for so long. Suddenly a couple of tears escaped his eyes and then he knew what happened was really bad. He never cried and it was obvious he wasn’t crying for the guy that was sleeping in he bed. That man had it all and couldn’t complain about a single thing in his life. He cried because if he couldn’t do what he always did, he was done.

-       What’s up cutie?

 A tremor traveled all along his spine. The man on the bed was no longer sleeping.

-       I’m good. I wanted to feel the cold a bit.
-       Ok. Are you staying?
-       Whatever you want.
-       Come here.

 So he had to go back to bed, dropping the syringe in the dark and hoping he would be able to find it afterwards. It would be a disaster for him if someone else saw it and started asking questions.

 In bed, he had to wait until the client fell asleep again but apparently that wasn’t the mood he was in. The moment he got into bed, it seemed the guy had developed a new set of hands. And the younger man didn’t enjoy it one bit. He wanted to pick up his things and leave as soon as possible. But the only way to let the guy do. So he did.

 After thirty minutes or so, the man was tired again and felt asleep right away. The boy got out of bed, went to the bathroom to clean himself and to clean his face too and he discovered that he hated the person that looked at him from the mirror. There had been a separation between the version of him that did whatever was necessary to survive and the him that just wanted to be left alone in order to live in peace. They had lived in peace for long but now it seemed that conflict was coming back to his head.

 He got out of the bathroom and looked for the syringe with the light of his cellphone. It had fallen under the bed. He removed the needle and put it all in an internal pocket of his jacket. He put on his clothes in silence and got out as soon as possible, not before grabbing a couple of bills from the guy’s wallet. The fact that he wasn’t going to do the same thing to him that he did to all others, didn’t meant he didn’t need any money.

 Once outside the hotel, he walked to the nearest metro station and wait on the platform for ten minutes until one of the late trains arrived. There were many people inside for such a late hour but mainly drunks, prostitutes, junkies and many other beautiful flowers of the night. He sat down near the door and realized he was very tired and just wanted to rest. Even his awful bed would be perfect, even in that awful shared apartment in which the other guys living there were more like pigs than men.

 He reflected on his life, thinking he really hated must about it. He would have wanted a nice place with a big bed and a nice mattress. He would have wanted to live alone and away from idiots, who made him have headaches every single day. He would have wanted to just live a private life away from any eyes that would want to ruin that, that would want to judge him for everything he had done.

 But that wasn’t possible. He was poor, even after having stolen so much money. Because there was always a bigger fish and that bigger fish demanded a piece of the earnings or it would do a lot of damage just because. And he had to pay the rent for that hellhole, he had to eat and pay for his metro card. Like any other human being, except he robbed men who were “defenseless”. He didn’t thought of it like that but, whatever.

 Once he got home, he locked the door, turn off the lights and put on some cotton on his ears in order not to hear anything from the outside. He wanted a moment to himself and that wasn’t going to happen if he heard the stupidities of the world outside of him. So he fell asleep soon and he slept for several hours, until he felt he had had enough of his bed. His body felt hurt somehow and then he remembered clients could be assholes so he didn’t give it a second thought.

 Before he could cross any of the idiots that lived with him, he put on some clothes and ran for the door. He bought breakfast with money from an earlier job and tried to eat as slow as he could, in order to enjoy the meal and also to make time go slower. Because if he went fast, night would come again and he didn’t wanted it to come because he was part of it and he had responsibilities there which he didn’t want to fulfill at all.

 He ate bacon, eggs, bread, ham and a cup of tea. It was much more than what he normally ate. Sometimes he would just have a granola bar or something like that. And other days, very bad days, he would stay in his bedroom because there was no money to eat and then he would have to deal with all the other guys shit, They would ask him for money or for drugs or whatever and he was sick to have to do that, dealing with them.

 It was a possibility to send them all to hell, but he really couldn’t do it because he knew what he was like when he lost control. He knew that if he started yelling or something, he couldn’t be stopped. And many times it was not only about what could come out of his mouth but also what he could do to others and himself, physically. He was a very violent man when he wanted to and that’s why he wanted to avoid people in general. They only pissed him off and that wasn’t good.

 After breakfast, he decided to go to a mall and just try to have a normal day, without so many worries. So he grabbed one of the bills he had stolen from his client the night before and promised himself to buy something with that. Maybe a t-shirt or at least an ice cream to enjoy the day. But after looking so many pieces of clothing and so much food, he felt more ill than ever. Somehow, he was worse than he thought.

 He found himself thinking about the man that he wasn’t able to rob and also about all the other that he had indeed robbed. And tried to make sense of all of that. He realized he had no idea how everything had gotten to that point, how it was that a young guy like him had to do such things to keep living. He knew the world didn’t give a shit about him but there had to be more to it than just that.

 Then, he felt a hand on his shoulder. He turned instantly, scared as he had being thinking and not paying attention to the people around him. For a minute, he thought it was a cop or a security officer. But it was just Nathan, the guy that charged him for what he did. He knew Nathan had come for more money but he had none. And he was done accepting that deal, because there was nothing he could take away from him anymore. No secrets, no revelations to make to anyone.

 His life was on a turning point but he had no idea if it was for the best or the worst.