A Beautiful Stranger

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I walked down the cobblestone paved path and turned left into a tiny alleyway. Walked towards the river and noticed less and less people around. In fact, all of a sudden the familiar city buzz and noise faded away in the distance. Instead, all I could hear were footsteps behind me. Although I wore headphones, steady, confident footsteps were all I could hear. I could sense his presence behind me. And indeed I was right. I turned around and saw him standing still with his backpack proudly perched on his back. I walked forward few more meters and turned back. He did the same. I refused to take notice of his intention to approach me. Instead, holding my breath I took the phone out of my pocket. I stared at it, like it is an alien object. I saw my reflection on its screen. My face had a happy glow and had a soft smile in the corner of my lips. My hand was trembling. I failed to consider this segment as something significant and instead of making an attempt to call someone for help, I slid my camera open and started taking photos of the century old stone bridge! I could not move. I felt frozen in time. I felt like I don’t have strength and that my feet are buried underneath the ground.

– ‘Would you do me a favour and look after my backpack for few minutes?’ – His voice was mellow and his accent was ever so sweet.
I nodded and continued taking photos of the bridge and the monumental buildings behind.

He was gone, but all was left to linger around was his blue backpack leaning on my feet. It had lots of fabric country flags attached onto its surface. I started pointing to those flags I can recognise: Spain, Canada, India, France, Holland, Croatia, Italy, Russia, China, Sweden, Brazil….And there were lots more, including many other unfamiliar to my eye. The fabric flags looked vibrant, bringing great interest by simply making such a stunning contrast with its simple blue backdrop. The energy and the events unfolding out of the bag were stronger then the wind on this chilly wintery afternoon. In that instant, I forgot where I was, as I got transported to a different places all at once.

– ‘Thank you for being my angel guardian!’ – that same voice brought me back to reality! ‘You might want to drink this before you get stone cold out here’! – without a hint of hesitation I took the cup and started drinking the warmth out of it. While I was consuming the syrupy beverage I was experiencing melting sensation inside. I felt wonderful! I felt inspired! I felt powerful without weightiness and limitations. Only when I gathered my senses I smiled at this beautiful stranger standing in front of me, thanked him and walked away!

Walking back to the office I tried to think of this encounter as a note to act upon, but I could not get anything right. I tried desperately to put all details in place but none of the pieces matched. His features got hazy, his body distant, his radiance blurry, and his backpack dispersed leaving all the fabric flags scattered around, tailing off in a beautiful, bursting with colour trail behind. After all, a warm drink and inspired heart is all I had left to remind me of an encounter that it wasn’t a dream after all…M

Devine Colour Red

– ‘Pack your overnight bag as quickly as you can! I will be waiting for you in the car!’ – I was told as I entered the house leaving my office bag in the hall.

– ‘Fine, I won’t be long’ – I’ve wrapped my arms around his neck and gave him a kiss. Then smiling I run up the stairs to get ready. I used to be very stressed and agitated when on Fridays I will be thrown an order to get ready quickly! Then we would spent hours arguing and hardly ever enjoyed a weekend together. Something needed to change. It was down to our agreement to be more organised, and that’s when the unexpected short notices turn out to be a day in advance notices. We were both happy with this arrangement. But all of a sudden today, it came in a matter of minutes. Surprisingly, I did not react to it at all, as I felt tired and last thing on my mind was to argue!

The car was driving up and down the countryside, as we were watching the glorious colours of pre-sunset being vividly painted all over the sky in front of our own very eyes.

– It is so beautiful! – He said and kept his eyes fixed on the road ahead, while he tried not to be distracted by the pastel painting. I could not have agreed more to his comment, however as everything looked unfamiliar, and the landscape around looked nothing like I have ever seen before, I couldn’t but ask:

– ‘Where are we going by the way?’- as much as I needed an answer, any answer, he stayed silent!

The radio was playing ‘All my love’, surrounding us with gentle ever so soft instrumental notes. It downed on me that is Valentine’s day today! I looked across suspiciously and hoped that we are not one of those couples that celebrate this occasion while locked up in a hotel room admiring how efficient their waiting staff are! We have been together long enough for him to identify that I never liked to be part of the advertising extravaganza! He is well aware that I very much like seeing a sea of red colour in every shop window on the high street on the runner up to Valentine’s day! Maybe because it is all eye catchy and beautiful, but I don’t see the point of celebrating something so trivial as the ‘V’ day.

As we were driving up the hill I was thinking about the significance of this event! In my defence, every couple will have a different explanation on why they like celebrating it. I know that there are many different legends surrounding St Valentine’s, but by far more I like the legend that says that Saint Valentine or Saint Trifun, as he is known on the Balkans, was one of the saints of spring, the saint of good health and the patron of beekeepers and pilgrims. The legend says that plants and flowers start to grow on this day. It has been celebrated as the day when the first work in the vineyards and in the fields commences. Therefore, you must agree with me that raising a glass of vine juice will be more appropriate then spending a little fortune on a gift that in time will loose its value!

Buried deep in my thoughts haven’t realised when the car had stopped and my door got opened! Only when I stepped out of the car, I noticed that we have come to see his uncle who owns a vineyard out in the countryside, where vines are spreading across the rolling hills of silence! I have forgotten how much I liked spending time here in the middle of nowhere! Here, is where birds share happy twits, where sun selflessly is feeding each and every single grape with nectar, and where the cellar holds a delicately tasteful vintage vines with priceless tag indicating its year of harvest. This place is holding a secret to a century old recipe of making the drink of all gods and goddesses.

– ‘I know how great respect you have for St Trifun, so I could not but bring you at the right place in the right time to celebrate the work commencing in the vineyards. My uncle has prepared an overalls for us to wear, with wellies and secateurs and he can’t wait to be given hand with the work on the vines. If we are done by 8pm, we will have a warm and hearty dinner cooked over open fire to celebrate yet another year of successful yield to come! And as he promised, if we can drink as much as wine as we possibly can, then we can spend the whole weekend doing nothing but recovering and relaxing on the sunny veranda overlooking the hills in the distance.’

I could not hide my surprise! I was truly overwhelmed with what I’ve just heard! I wondered why nobody else had thought about this before! If only, everyone is like us, we could all have had a great reason to abandon Valentine’s celebrations and join St Trifun’s army of vine helpers. My face lit up. My body got warmer instantly and with a smile on my face I leaned closer to plant a kiss on his cheek. He smiled and kissed me back softly almost silently, as if favoured to preserve my thoughts forever. He then turned around, leaned slightly forward and allowed me to jump onto his back to be carried up to the chateau to greet the Man himself!…M

Blueprint of Love

I looked around and you were not there! My heart sunk! I suddenly thought of you while waiting for the lift in the lobby. When the lift arrived and the doors slid open, to my surprise we bumped into each other. I was going out and you were just coming in. You smiled at me. It looked like you were able to read my thoughts! I got so embarrassed and looked down. I must have blushed and you had seen me blushing! In that instant, I got pushed inside by people from behind me. I was so relieved when the lift doors closed behind me. I did not say anything, but neither did you. However, later that day, light-heartedly you asked me out! Scared, I declined your offer!

I sat in the dark and reflected upon our little random rendezvous that I never gave much meaning to in the past. Our little chats here and there that were always amusing, comical and sometimes I can’t deny they were pretty hilarious. I now remember how much fun we had dancing until the morning light, laughing and observing drunk people around! I have learned so much about the city and yourself due to your cycling expeditions and that evening when we discussed families! I felt so comfortable in your presence, maybe even too protected! I won’t forget the story about your break up and how you felt about it. Remember? I wholeheartedly gave you some tips on how to stay strong! Admittedly, I could not have waited for our next random get-together.

However, after the lift incident, everything got slightly too emotional! Shortly after, you invited me out again! Frightened, I declined it again! You tried calling. Suspiciously, I never picked up. You tried getting in touch, I never became available! As a matter of fact, I moved out and never saw you again!

Although I feel terrible leaving without a good bye, I still think of you. In reality, I think of you and your smile ever so often. As time goes by, have realised how much I miss you and our discussions on anything and everything! I miss that feeling of contentment, comfort and tenderness radiating from you. I never meant to go! However, the truth is I had, leaving behind an undiscovered possibility of happiness and much sought friendship. To this date, I have sent millions of silent prayers to you asking for forgiveness. And as part of the Devine gift of gratitude I have made a fond memorial, whenever accessed, my heart fills up with love and kindness…M

Toot-Toot! – II

I’ve stayed up all night, baking and decorating one extraordinary birthday cake! In all honesty, I thoroughly loved it and enjoyed every minute of it. With each part coming nicely together I was able to see his manifestation around! He is fond of trains, fascinated by stars and now that he has started learning the alphabet, letters were part of my design too. Colourful icing got cut into shapes of train with carriages, letters and stars, so that the final design was magnificent!

When the morning arrived, I got my biggest reward ever! Once he saw the cake, his little toddler’s face lit up and a giant smile revealed his excitement! With confidence he raised his hand up and said – ‘Toot-Toot!’ I might have not slept the whole night but his approval gave me tons of energy for the day ahead.

We got dressed in no time and we took the cake to his nursery, so that everyone can be part of our celebration! After joined singing of ‘Happy Birthday’, followed by blowing out birthday candles, we got surrounded by toddlers waiting to taste the toot-toot birthday cake. Eager to share it, I grabbed the first knife available and started cutting up the cake. At that very moment I was told that no children will try the cake at present, as slices will be given to their parents to decide if they want to give cake to their children to eat. I beg your pardon? Did I just heard this correctly? So, you are telling me after such a devotion and making sure that there are no nuts in this chocolate heaven, children are not allowed to taste it before the approval of their parents? Oh noooo! Truly unfair! Such a disaster!

I must have been so shocked that I could not remember when I had continued cutting the cake in the smallest slices possible. I heard a voice coming from behind me: – ‘That plastic knife is quite blunt! Use this one’. I looked over my shoulder and saw a gigantic, butcher’s knife next to my forearm. I do not know what made me more nervous: seeing my reflection on it or the size of the knife! Whichever way, it did not look right to me. Instantly, I decided to hand the cake over to the cook who brought the knife to me.
– ‘I don’t think I am doing a great job in cutting it anyhow. Please slice the cake and kindly share it with everyone around’.

I remember saying ‘Thank you’, followed by ‘Good Bye’ and clutching a ‘toot-toot’ slice in my hand, we left the nursery with joyful hearts. Pushing the ‘puky’ trike up the hill and smiling out loud whenever we raised our hands to say Toot-Toot! was a memorable moment to treasure forever!…M

Toot-Toot! – I

A Wonderful Second Birthday to One Exceptionally Beautiful Boy! Toot-Toot!…M

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The Joy of Commuting

Recently my commute to work has become so chaotic due to people behaving inhumane. In fact it can be quite amusing to see people fighting for a space on a train, the excuse they make for being late and all the palava about getting a seat to commute in style.

Although this morning was by no means any different, a woman who decided to occupy the space behind me was going a bit too far. She had a massive hand bag over her shoulder, which was poking my lower back and ribs. I turned round and politely asked her to move it away from my kidneys! She obviously was not happy to be told such a thing and frowned back at me rolling her eyes back and around. Honestly, she looked so silly!

As the train moved slowly on the way to its final destination, this same woman continued now to lean on my back. To make matters worse as she was leaning on me, she was constantly moving. I could only guess that she was putting things in and out of her massive hand bag! After minutes of what it seemed like eternity I turned around and confronted this woman who obviously was not happy to occupy just a space on this packed train, but she wanted to occupy my space too. When I called her a leaner she was offended. When I said maybe she should be more independent in her life rather then leaning on other people she was furious and kept saying “but I do not lean on you!” By way of a monologue then I said: Oh, and what’s this heavy something resting on my back? Oh, its YOU leaning on ME! after which fellow passengers started laughing! How embarrassing! So now all of a sudden our affair became everyone’s affair. And suddenly but ever so subtly more space was created around me. A guy standing next to me moved slightly to his right and I moved towards him in the new space created just for me!

Call it approval or sympathy, you should know that getting a bit more space on trains these days is a complete and utter luxury.

Oh dear, dear! What a journey!..M

Timeless Treasure

It is nothing special…so they say…As it never really was.

Just an infusion of pure water and some delicate dried herbs. Nothing else. But in fact it makes up for something lots more then that. Like with any given set to experiment with; Everything is nothing. Which means nothing is everything right?

I love being part of this nothing. At all times it brings lightness and joy. It enhances the meaning of the past and brings clarity for the future. It grounds, fulfils, comforts and paints colours into my life. With every sip taken I grow older, wiser, richer, more prepared to live then ever before. And I allow myself to drink endless sips into infinity. Within time it clears my identity. I slowly become everything, without boundaries, without preconceptions, without differences, free from artificial perceptions, pure in the most purest forms of all.

Following one simple rule will help when down, broken or just bored: When the cup is empty, make sure it is clean before filling it up with everything you like and start testing the new beginnings. We all have choices in life and sometimes too many to choose from. It is given upon us to choose what we love doing, sharing and experiencing. Sometimes it can be overwhelming incident and what will help us to decide is letting go off everything, becoming nothing, then slowly evolving into the purest form of ourselves. Only then we are able to see the real self and the world around…M

Subtle Energy

Today, I went hiking up the mountain. All alone…In fact i was not alone. I had lots of thoughts drowning my consciousness. In practice somehow I always start hiking heavy, carrying lots and lots on my mind but by the end, I become much lighter with a strong sense of clarity, purity and positivity. It always seams easier to reenergise when being surrounded by nature, mountains, trees, snow and ice.

For a moment, I thought of you and instead of looking up into infinity, I looked down. Surprisingly, in-between patches of ice and frozen leaves I saw this beautiful white quartz crystal. Its qualities reminded me of you. It was whiter then the whitest snow, and shinier then the brightest star. I knew I am honoured by your presence. I picked it up. Holding the crystal in my hand I continued climbing up.

Although the weather was crispy cold and the hiking path up the mountain was icy and full of snow, the crystal kept me warm and safe on the journey…M

Bang Bang

A black and white island of peace and tranquility! A place where one can feel safe and protected.

One rainy afternoon in November, just around dusk a couple decided to cross a street in the old town, which pulses with chaotic energy that is utterly perplexing. It was a busy crossing, and the rain made it more difficult to see ahead. It was possible to see nothing but drops of water, dimmed lights, umbrellas, ponchos and wipers, moving fast to clean the windshield of the cars. It was also possible to hear nothing but the rain drops falling on the ground and wipers rubbing itself against the glass. An umbrella was held by a man who offered shelter to a woman holding a bouquet of flowers. They were talking while crossing the street. One step ahead, and a black line crossed, then a white one, then a black and another white, and a further black and a scream and a car driving over the woman!

Eventually the driver was forced to stop the car. His face was cold, absentminded, pressed against a mobile phone. Thick moustache covered his top lip, which made it tremendously difficult to lip read his words. He was angry, his face turned red instantly, while he waved his hand across the glass giving sign to people in front to clear the street. In a moment the man on the street walked towards the car to open the driver’s door. His intention was human, full of care and pure. His desired outcome was to stop the driver driving off and face the consequences of his actions. When he opened the door, he become frozen in time. All the noise around him, every drop of rain, every light above him, become so blurred, so distant. He felt all alone, so small and insignificant. He looked up and brought his hands forward in a prayer in front of his chest. There was a silence followed by a bang bang…The driver shot him down…He hit the ground…bang bang….that awful sound…

After all, It should have always been black and white… However, it is never black and white…Destiny has its own set of colours; painting generously blood red over the zebra crossing embellished with colourful petals…M

Bitter Sweet Dreams

We all got sooo excited! A foreign cake shop has been opened in our neighbourhood. Wohooo! Cupcakes, brownies, caramel slices, muffins, pop cakes, famous apple pie, all that on our door step.

Phones are ringing, messages are flowing and emails are being sent, so that finally we all met at the city square and walked over the bridge to the old bazaar..

While walking, sweet words were coming out of our mouths. I was able to hear the boys in front sharing a recipe and the girls around me chatting about experiences gathered on the travels enriched by a delicious puddings and desserts. Everyone around me was eager to get to the place and the walking pace increased into a running. It did not take long to locate this cake shop as it is right next door to a well known to us, a vinary.

We sat on the decked veranda overlooking the old bazaar. Small wooden benches and tables neatly positioned on the veranda, were leaving very much a feel of a comfortable and cozy place to be. Surprisingly there was no music to link the place. A smiley chap approached our group, welcoming us broadly to the newly opened cake shop. Surprisingly there was not a menu. Instead one by one were asked to go inside and choose from the selection of cakes on offer. This place was hiding more surprises for us. There were only five types of small cakes to choose from. By the time I got the turn to choose, there were no cakes left on the plates in the fridge. Surprisingly I could see the emptiness, I could see the void between a cake and no cake. Is this a reality, is this a childish game or is it just a life lesson teaching simple disappointment? A cake shop with no cakes?

A cake shop with no cakes to buy, with no cakes to share, with no cakes to see at all? Isnt this the same as going to a tea house, but no tea available to drink? Or to a wine tasting evening but no wines to sample?

Was I having a great expectation about being able to taste something different in my home land or was it just a hope to see the world shrinking on my dessert plate? Whichever way, that gave the impression that disappointment was greatly bigger than any other feeling at this moment. It came as a wave and affected everyone within the group. Those who had a slice kindly offered to share with the rest. We got to taste them and that as far as it went. For those visiting after us, a cake shop with no cakes was more real then ever before…M