Hyderabad, 21 January 2019
Missing flights is akin to a heartbreak. Especially when you’re a Bangalore dweller whose prior experiences of missing flights haven’t made him one bit wiser.
The first flight that I missed was on January 28, 2017. The fateful day that was about to bring a few hours of pleasure followed by months of pain. I was supposed to meet her on that day. Missing my flight from Mumbai to Delhi meant that I had to postpone my meeting to January 29. It wasn’t bad at first. It was heavenly. The girl I loved was right there, by my side, and I was looking at her in flesh and blood after a gap of two years. We roamed in the streets of Delhi during the day and at night I invited her to my friend’s place in Noida.
It was a deserted place — a sprawling 5BHK in a relatively uninhabited locality in Sector 120. We laid next to each other, chitting-chatting and catching up on the time we spent away. About an hour later, when we finally decided to call it a night and she asked me to switch off the light and I snuggled into the blanket we shared, she opened her arms and wrapped them around my chest. It didn’t take me long to kiss her. She didn’t take a second more to respond. My heart was beating out of my chest. I could barely kiss her well. My hands shivered around her bare body, circling her waist, first, and traversed through her navel to reach her breasts.
Those breasts I had dreamed about for the past three years. Her nipples were as firm as cherries. All of a sudden I felt anxious, thirsty — for water and her flesh — and could barely breathe. I decided to not choke on my emotions and go down on her. She let out exactly three moans — a precursory ‘uh’, an ‘ahh’ of acknowledgement and then a full-blooded ‘aahh’ to say that in that moment she wanted all of me — as my lips retraced the path my hands had just measured, planting their signatures at exactly three places — just beneath her breasts, on her navel and then finally a few inches beneath it where a strand of hair stood unattended.
My hands ran through the small of her back and all the way to her bra strap. She arched her back to facilitate. It took me more than a minute to figure out how to unhook her. I didn’t manage to do it, but I did manage to calm the storm I had forged inside her, as she gathered her senses, knowing, perhaps, of how drastic it could be if we went any further, even as I cursed myself for my inexperience at undressing women, and whispered, “Stop.”
She repeated the same word as I tried to calm the monster within and climbed off. The next morning she told me, “I didn’t feel anything.” Just before we kissed, she had whispered in my ears, “I don’t love you.” I did not know what to make of it then, but I do, now.
The second time I missed a flight was some time in mid-2018. I was supposed to fly from Bangalore to Lucknow and onwards to home. It was like a second heartbreak, more so because it reminded me of the first time and how my life took a significant turn when I missed a flight. I was scared of what could happen. I called my mom and made up an excuse, and took a bus back to Bangalore city.
It was the third time today. My heart broke when I was refused to check in at the airport counter. I was reminded of the past and how missing a flight made me feel homeless for two years. Far away from the city and home not in sight, I felt lost. I missed you. Only last night I was joyous at having found a new lease of life and less than six hours later I was among a crowd of strangers, not knowing what to do and where to go.
The power of love is that it makes homes out of strange lands. My mom cleared the path to home. You made it a pleasant journey. A friend waits to welcome me. I’ll be home tomorrow morning — a strange land made familiar with the power of love. As I would be when I slip into your arms and bury my face between your breasts. Open your home for me, please?
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