Day 799

Happenstance
(An exercise in creative writing)

Carousel number 6 rolled and tumbled squares and rectangles flown in from Dubai to London Heathrow. People crowded around it, like moths to light, waiting impatiently. The black boxes looked suspiciously similar yet, 2 good-looking men in their late thirties, both in well-worn denim jeans and greenish t-shirts, both roughly size 40 picked up 1 each, assuming ownership and walked to the exit. One of them Steve, the other Matt.

As Steve left in a black cab, the thought of his ex-wife from a decade ago, Tara, struck him out of the blue. She most certainly lives in London now. He wondered if she had finally found ‘satisfaction’, smirking to himself. This business trip had been thrust upon him. He tried hard to see the upside with no luck. He had half a day to himself with no plans. He managed to check into his allotted section of the travel factory and sat looking blankly at the heavy maroon silk curtains, really bored.

Well, best unpack and venture out for a walk, he thought. Surprisingly, the number-lock on his suitcase was undone. However unlikely, he must have forgotten to lock it before departure, said his rational mind. He opened the black Tumi and was hit by an explosion of floral perfume. Looking through the fragrance, the contents of the box appeared textural and colourful, most unlike his own belongings. A red feather boa lay strewn across the top. He was shocked and intrigued, completely sucked into the suitcase. He picked it up like a thief, peering shadily around the empty room to check if anyone was looking. It was softer and lighter than anything he had ever touched before. He had to know what it felt like on his cheeks, so it automatically came up to his face. It was so soothing that his eyes closed all by themselves. After a while he respectfully placed it on the bed. On second thoughts, he bravely wrapped it around his neck. He then pried back into the box.

A pair of purple silk net stockings came next, another delicate, tactile article. It seemed ridiculous that he had a strong desire to try them on. For once, he allowed himself to go with it and changed into the sexy, luscious, figure-hugging, perfect leg wear. His hands didn’t want to let go of it but his legs loved it even more. Then came the little black dress, the dramatic fake eye-lashes, the flashy silver bracelets, the red pencil heels, the gorgeous make up, the Jitterbug perfume and the flamboyant blonde wig. And, they all fitted him superbly!

Suddenly a jarring sound shocked him out of his rhapsody. It was the blasted phone. The airline-man said there had been a mistake with baggage handling. Steve didn’t know how to speak with lipstick on but before he knew it a feeble ‘yes’ escaped his lips. It was arranged for him to take the suitcase back to the Information Desk as the owner of this suitcase was in a hurry to have it back. Steve felt somewhat curious and embarrassed.

A handsome couple stood at the desk, slightly pensive. Steve feigned complete innocence as he blokishly shook hands with Matt who leaned forward slightly to pick up the fragrance of Jitterbug perfume on Steve. He gave him a slightly crooked knowing smile that Steve dodged and furtively looked away. His eyes fell upon an older, more elegant Tara, Matt’s partner.

Steve’s ego was shot to pieces but he was grateful for this introduction to his own little piece of heaven.

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