They fight again. This is called distance-love? It is the 70th day since the first time Jane came to this country, unfamiliar place, hometown of others. One day has 24 hours, one week has 7 days, and maybe they spent roughly 840 hours to argue and go mad with each other. She feels lonely and depressed living in that big room. The silence is all around. This silence, waiting to eat her up from the inside. Through the window in this attic, she can see the moon. The moonlight splashes down its silver glow onto closely buildings, bathing them, illuminating them. And far away, the deep velvety sky seems like gradually becoming gloomy, prettifying the beauty of this moon.
Jane loves coffee, a real coffee-aholic. It is always the first choice when she comes to anywhere and with anybody. 5 years ago, she chose coffee as a friend to forget about the loneliness. It sounds like fun but when people feel lonely, they tends to find something to fill up this isolation, in case they desire to disassemble that pain. It can be a sport, an author, a singer, a food, or a beverage. Jane still remembers, at the first time, it was just a sudden thought. And she started to try, then now it is a habit. Trying new things is the same as changing herself. Doing something news is never boring. In opposite, she feels creative, energetic, enthusiastic and blithe more. Take risks and try new things – it is her philosophy. And that’s why she is here, in this new continent.
11:00 PM, Jane unwittingly drinks coffee. She fully awakes. Her boyfriend, Charles, is falling asleep now. It was 5:00 AM on the other side of the world. Still this room, it has passed 70 days since the day she arrived here. When people forget to pay attention, time flies quickly, as if it was just yesterday. When you realize how quickly time goes by, and how quickly it has gone, you can do nothing. Regret is always a common status of human being. The temperature on this room is more and more cold. That is what she feels right now. It’s time for transformation – autumn passing, winter coming. However, the truth is all phenomena in this world are constantly changing. People need to perceive, people need to accept.
7 hours ago, they got quarrel. Charles spent a lot of time to give the final decision. He loves Jane terribly much. “Am I thwarting her future?”, “Will it be all right if her thoughts mature faster than mine?”. 9th months loves her and he finds that this is a person he want to stick to. Building a long term relationship is already complicated. And it is now more difficult that two people are living far away 13,000 kilometers.
“Baby, I think we need to talk.” – In earnest way, finally, he spoke out.
“What happened, honey? What’s wrong?” – Charles worried.
“You know, I love you, it’s true, I really love you. I want we become mellow to life together. Now it’s time to change something. I know you are handing with a difficult situation… Living abroad for the first time is never easy. I know you get many troubles – homesickness, languages barriers, sometimes racial discrimination. But I believe it is a good opportunity for you to grow. It’s not because I don’t want to hear your lamentation, it’s because I want you to be strong, be day-by-day complete yourself. You need to be more positive, and love yourself first. Just take care of yourself. Don’t worry about me. I can deal with my problems by myself. So don’t worry”.
He said. Suddenly he feels a little pain on the left side. “Am I say something wrong or inadvertently hurt Jane?”. “No, that’s the only way I must do. Jane, I’m sorry…”. Sitting in the familiar place, he thought about her sweetheart. This is a coffee shops where they first met each other. The sweet smell of this mocha cup made his nostalgia thicker. If Jane had stayed here, surely she would have ordered that cup. She loves coffee a lot, especially mocha. Mocha is a combination of chocolate and coffee. It has both sweet and bitter flavor. Somebody said that, people who regard mocha as their favorite coffee flavor also like the blend of sweet and bitter in their lives. These coffee drinkers are excessively compassionate and tenderness. Yes, she is. It’s her, a kindness person, a sensitive soul.
There were some signs from the universe. The date she landed to Belgium, it rained heavily. It was the first time she had a flight, and it took 16 hours, with bad food, without her favourite kind of coffee. The temperature changed from 30 to 11 degree Celsius. She could not remember how many blast of winds hit to her face that . “I’m so lucky to survive to be here” – she thought.
“Hello! Long time no see. How are you? I really really miss you. Ahhh, this is my boyfriend…” They gave each others a deep hug. Time flied so fast, it took around 6 months that Jane had met Christina in Vietnam. Jane and Christina took part in an project in their university, and they had a great period of time as a teammate and a soulmate. It’s not easy for anybody to open their heart and share to the partner about their stories, feelings or thoughts. But next to Christina, Jane feels really comfortable to open her heart and share any things about her life. They had a promise meeting each other in Belgium. And then, Jane was here.
When Jane was in Vietnam, she got many helps from Christina for this Europe journey, from little things such as how to back her suitcase, where to buy coat or some tips for asking visa… Jane was hopefully come to Belgium. She was extremely impatient of being roomate with Christina. They would jointly cook Asia food, plan and travel together, discover all the nooks in this city, and walk around the street and talk about what happened during the time Christina left Vietnam. Well, such good imaginations!
However, everything was not going as smoothly as what Jane hoped. She was disappointed from the first day enter to the room. Christina took Jane to their dorm. “Look! This room is leaking. And it is leaked near my bed. Such a messy place! It seems Christina has never cleaned or arranged all her stuffs . What did she do with her room, ah, no, our room?… Well, forget about it, I just want to take a rest.” 5:30 PM, after eating rice porridge, Jane sinked into a deep sleep. In her dreams, she saw their family were standing far away, at the airport and waving their hand. In the meanwhile, she was fast walking to the check-in counter. She saw her father’s face reflects clearly both the sadness and happiness. Her adoptive mother looked so nervous, maybe she worried about how Jane can contrive all the household without her help. Her boyfriend, Charles, nearly cried when she slowly came to the invisible area. All the images on yesterday appeared in her dream. She missed her home, really!
It took 3 days from the day she came there. Jane thought that she needed more time to be adapt with this new environment. She got jet lag and she had no energy these days. Came back from a long trip in another city with new friends, Jane was really tired. What she truly needed right then was just changing her clothes, climbing on the bed and sleeping. She inserted the key in to the room lock. “Wait!!! Wait 5 minutes.” The sound came from inside the room. Christina was there with her boyfriend. Jane knew what happened! Because the next morning, she saw the condom dropped on the floor. “What the hell!!! It’s overwhelmed and no respect. The waste basket is still there, why she didn’t know behavior. It can’t be acceptable.”
She decided to tell her what she thought about. Because if they were roomate, it meaned they would live together during the next 5 months. But well, what Christina replied hurted Jane a lot. “It’s not my fault because I throw this condom into the trash bin. I don’t know why it felt down into the floor. And, listen! We must know we live in the cheapest room. It means you shouldn’t ask for the privacy. You know, I don’t know what it looks like if you are Mia.” She was not listening. She just wanted to quarrel with Jane. “It is just the fourth day. What would it look like for the next following day? And why she compared me with that weird girl who she really dislikes?” Jane was quiet, did not argue and came to the stairs. She cried a lot, but tried not to create sound.
“Am I wrong to come here? Have I put too much hope for that journey?”. In Vietnam, she expected about making new friends, improving English skill, learning more about different culture and language. But then, what was going on? She felt lonely. Because of herself? She didn’t know. There were so many troubles happened in the short time. She felt it still existed what called racial discrimination in this place. Did she smell bad or look so disgusted? Why there was no one wanting to sit next to her? She was bullied and suspected of stealing. She couldn’t find any interest in group-working, picnic or extracurricular activities. She didn’t want to feel lonely. It would be better if she was alone in her room than being surrounded by the crowded and feeling lonely. Everything had changed a lot since the day she came there. In her hometown, she used to talkative, friendly and open. But now, she did not want to stay long in kitchen, she was afraid of talking with stranger and having shallow conversations. She hurried to step out of the classroom when the class finished. Nomore stating or expressing idea. Nomore sharing or accosting. She studied and lived in silence as the invisible.
9:00 PM, Christina came back to the room. There was a party in dorm. It took a long time for Jane to see her. After a fight in the beginning days, Christina decided to live in his boyfriend’s house. There was no certain reason. She said that before Jane was here, she still lived with his boyfriend. So if Jane felt comfortable and peaceful to stay and sleep there alone, she would be pleasant to move to her boyfriend’s place. She was afraid that Jane would feel unfamiliar and lonely in the first days so she decided to stay there longer.
Christina was drunk. The cup on the top of fridge was fallen because of her collision. Christina talked a lot, as she never had chance to talk like that before. However, she had to leave soon because she would miss the last tram. 11:30 PM, in that empty room, there is a person who are musing.
Jane is so tired because of fighting with her boyfriend. And it become more mixed feelings for what Christina said 30 minutes ago. This moon is still shining these sad lights. This fridge still creates consecutive sound. Sometimes, she hears a few cars run through fast breaking the black silence. Looking at the moon suddenly dwarfs her own troubles and all the gravities of terrestrial life. She thinks of her unfathomable feelings.
“Look! Let’s face it. The time you feel lonely is the time you most need to grow up. You cannot control what other people may do or say. The only person you control is you, yourself. That feeling is inevitable. For many of us, lonely is a popular state of being. But the important point here is how we reply on them. You are actually never alone. You have your family, your good friends, your love. You have your passion, your dreams, your motivation. Be confident because you are a unique individual. You will be stronger after this messy. And you see, you can understand more about yourself and people around you. Now, it’s time to stand up and enjoy the remaining moments.” – There are some whispers, and these one come from her inner. Who brought her to this thoughts? The moonlight?
“Hey, Jane. It takes a half journey. My ex-roomate and I went to the coffee shop 3 or 4 times but we still haven’t had any coffee time together. If you have free time, please tell me know. I will come with you. There are so many things to share…” – In a tipsy bout, Christina said. “Yes, I also have many things to tell you..” – Jane thought. She remembered to the best time with Christina and the beautiful space one year ago. In the forest with insect’s sound, weed’s smell and the gentle moonlight, they were side by side and talked about things touching Jane’s heart – about her first love, about her father’s leaving, about her deadliest sickness,…At that time, Jane just wished that she could give Christina a big hug, to soothe her pain.
She is strong. And she can overcome that hard situation. She believes it and her boyfriend confirmed it. Time flies quickly without waiting, so enjoy every moments as it comes. “It must be better if we run closer and hug that loneliness”, Jane thinks. Fighting never brings the best result. Tomorrow, she will ask for support from her sweetie. Maybe he can understand clearly and sympathize about what she is feeling right now. She will not hope for any changes from his decision, but sharing about all that deep thoughts may bring them closer while the distance is extremely far now. Anyway, she isn’t angry about his decision, and she understand why he did it.
“Ping, ping…”. The sound from her Facebook notification is ringing out. Her teammates are sharing about their journey. And, Jane decides to join in chatting. She thinks they have some mutual points.