Summer Memories

Sometimes, in the most unexpected moments, random things fall into place, fitting together like in an Italian mosaic and you discover certain truths about yourself, that you should have known long ago.

The last two weeks in summer Europe had a moment like that. I was on a train from Bern to Geneva and looking out of the window came across this perfect rainbow over a field of sunflowers. The rainbow traveled with me for a while, as if to show, life is as vast as this, so smile…

This picture will stay with me, crystallized in to a Van Gough painting. I was leafing through Devisidero by Michael Ondaatje, casually mixing those words with the residues of my emotions over Sujee. It was as if I could turn my head and see him returning from the restaurant car with a cappuccino. His presence stayed with me those two weeks… with this book he gifted me, with his little note and signature on its inner folio…

Devisidero talks of the delicate violence in our lives. About relationships left without closure. And I suddenly realized why I sulk over coming to Europe so much. I love the European  summers. Walking on small footpaths hemmed in with blue berry bushes and crab apple trees. The blood maples. The sun light on your skin…and yet there is this strage foreboding I have that makes me want to rush for the next flight back home. And I realise now, that it is my past in Sweden. The summer trees return to haunt me about relationships I have left behind without a closure some years back. And I remember the plum tree from Ulla’s garden…the lawn I used to mow for her…

I had left Sweden promising to return 3 months later and I never did. I somehow feel guilty about entering the inner circle of the Wingmark family and then having to leave it. You can’t enter in to peoples hearts randomly and walk away…there’s an unbearable amount of guilt invovlved in the act. You can’t have two families at two corners in the world. And my circumstances were such that I would have felt terribly guilty which ever I chose to be with. But this must be what I must reconcile with.

There are so many things about the choice I made to stay in Colombo something I do not regret; and am truly happy with. However these occasional visits to Europe bring me these past memories of summer time and days of love and being a part of someone else’s life. There’s an aching when you know that you cannot bring these two worlds together; that they are separate, and you are the thin stretched line between them.

And I see my ghost walking down familiar footpath from my home in Hjarup to the bus stop on a similar summer day, the silver Birch shimmering in the sun…

Landscapes I have once loved and abandoned…


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