You have not known what you are.
You have slumbered upon yourself all your life.
Your eyes have been as much as closed most of the time.
What you have done is already in mockeries.

The mockeries are not you.
Underneath them
And within them,
I see you lurk...


-Walt Whitman


26.5.09

lost and found


IMAGINE ME INSIDE A BUS. Imagine me leaning forward, vandalizing the back of the seat in front of me with a marker pen. I was on my way home that day. I thought the air-conditioning could save me from the scorching heat of the afternoon sun. It couldn’t. The bus was almost full. I felt suffocated by the disgusting smell of undeodorized underarms and vomit that churned inside the airtight environment. I wanted to get off but I was too lazy to move, pinned to that bug-infested seat. I just wanted to go home and enjoy a sanctuary only my room could give. But a two-hour-long journey still loomed ahead.

I continued to write onto the bare steel in front of me, scribbling words I copied from the rusting floor and murky glass windows that blurred the speeding images outside. I was struggling to keep my hand steady, eager to make every letter legible despite the sudden stops and bumps along the way. It was a rough ride. The words finally converged into a nine-line poetry, which ended with a sign and an eleven-digit number. I was hoping that someone would care to read it, unveil the message beneath the lines, and find me. I was going home and yet I felt lost, ever wondering if I took the right bus.

I spent the rest of the ride looking outside occasionally lip-synching conversations between people. I watched as the yellowish tone of the world succumbed under the grey shade of the sky, once blue and now swallowed whole by wrathful dark clouds. Soon, bullets of water streaked down, firing at will against everything, pounding on the bus’ roof and windows. My head ached in the swift drop of temperature. It didn’t take long before the flood water rose and for the children of the streets to play in celebration. I envied them, those little vagabonds. I was dry and warm and yet I couldn’t smile remembering how I used to enjoy the rain once upon a time.

The traffic ominously twisted. The sounds of angry horns became a chatter, pointless amidst the stagnant traffic flow. The two-hour journey stretched to three, to four and then five. I was stranded, trapped in a gas chamber thinking that fates were mocking me once again. And then, the hissing sound of an opening bus door broke the monotony of the moment. Every one looked up. Someone got on board. I watched as the new passenger walked gracefully along the aisle. I was torn into thinking which was more curious about her: the fact that she’s dripping wet or that she was missing a shoe. She traversed the length of the aisle leaving wet footprints and blots on the cold steel floor, bowed head moving left and right searching for a seat. And she found one—the one next to me.

I became so aware of her presence and the minute space between us. It made me feel uncomfortable and yet there was this urge to have a glimpse of her face concealed under her long black hair. She felt terribly cold. I could sense her trembling in her seat. If I could at least make her feel warm. But I couldn’t do anything. The ugly feeling of powerlessness compelled me to just sigh—a subtle way to scream out bottled frustration that burdened my chest. I looked once again to the cold, wet, world behind the glass, desperately trying to swim away towards a reverie I so longed for, separated from me by a curtain of an unrelenting summer rain.

And then between a heartbeat and a groan, my cellular silently rang. Someone had sent me a message. I reached for it in my pocket, wrapped in a white handkerchief. After my eyes grazed the three lines of the message, it struck me. Fate indeed mocked me the day.


"You should vandalize buses more often, sir.
I think I found you.
And I hope you can find me too."


I looked incredulously at the person next to me, a cellular held in her trembling hand. I offered my hand where the piece of cloth from my pocket lies.

“Thank you.” She slowly reached for it in my hand. She looked up and bestowed me a shy smile. It was then that I saw her beautiful face, embellished with water droplets glinting like misplaced diamonds.

“No, miss. Thank you.” For the first time in ages I smiled. It’s indeed easy to find someone, especially when the person you’re looking for is sitting just a couple of inches from you.

“I think I found you too.”






46 comments:

Theo Martin said...

TOTOO BA TO? HINDI BA TO FICTION! SHET! SHET! SHET!

lucas said...

theo: nako...fiction po yun. ahehe! thanks for dropping by :)

ShatterShards said...

Sometimes, fact and fiction no longer have a clear boundary for the author. I can see you writing on any surface just to let the time pass, especially on a two-hour bus ride from Manila to Laguna.

What gave it away as fiction was the rain, which is something we haven't had for two weeks now. And the emergence of a spare seat beside the protagonist, considering that the bus was almost full; not to mention the odds of the girl being beautiful and friendly. haha!

Kudos to you for this post. I like it. I envy it.

-----
Hayden and Katrina pa rin ba hanggang ngayon? Buti na lang di na ako nanonood ng TV, kaya di na ako affected sa mga nangyayari sa mga buhay nila. haha!

I haven't read Love in the Time of Cholera yet. Balitaan mo na lang ako after you've finished it.

I saw Serendipity. Maganda yung premise, although parang ang sayang ng oras at pagkakataon if you rely on a book and a $20 bill to dictate whether two people are destined to be together. haha!

Cheers!

vanvan said...

ayan..kaganda kasing gumawa..nacoconfused tuloy sila..

i so love this again..gumawa ka nga ng pangit at ng maiba nman ang comment ko..

lolz

Ely said...

fiction lang pala, kainis. hehehehe

Chyng said...

Eksenahan sa bus! Wee!

Mejo Off topic: Naalala ko yung muntik na din akong magpass out dahil sa init sa aircon na bus! Kala ko mamamatay nako nun.. haha

Desert Aquaforce said...

i was about to write an all uppercase WOW (which I just did) just to realize very soon that the lost love found is just a figment of an imagination.

nevertheless, you once again did a detailed account of the highlights and lowlights of the bus ride that seemed so genuine and authentic!

jei said...

Ang cute! You know at first I thought this was going to be a scary story, hehehehe, hindi pala. And then what happened? Grrrr...You're doing it again Lucas, bitin na naman ako! Hahay, i-imagine ko na lang ang mga sumunod na eksena.

RJ said...

Huhmn, parang hindi pa ako makapag-comment. This story is so mysterious! Ang dami kong mga katanungan...

Elay said...

LOVE IT. hehe

Denis said...

you bastard genius!
pag ganitong single ako, wag kang gumaganyan.

a bus with the element of what i usually find cheesy in vandalizing your number on seats? oh men, witty!

love it.gawin natin tong short film!!!!

(paula abdul clap on air with head banging in aw.)

PUSANG-gala said...

""It didn’t take long before the flood water rose and for the children of the streets to play in celebration. I envied them, those little vagabonds. I was dry and warm and yet I couldn’t smile remembering how I used to enjoy the rain once upon a time.""

----OMG---such words---i used to enjoy the rain too and I used to have the boldness kids have and feel the excitement in simple endeavors---but at some point----I shut down----and despite the comfort life has to offer these days---thre's just something missing---maybe Andrew Matthews is right---we have a lot of things to learn from kids....

Theo Martin said...

ah! haha, kala ko totoo. should have read the description of the post first before making any comments.

Angelo said...

nice! I am quite fond of finding people and being found by people on public transportation myself.... there's a lot of interesting characters that live there.

what ever happened to her shoe? and what is she a metaphor for?

Hi! I'm Grace said...

Hi Lucas, it is so nice to be back here... I enjoyed reading your post.

Rcyan M. said...

Wow, nice story you got here. hehe. Sana mangyari din sa 'kin 'to. (--,)

bena said...

oh my! i thought this was true and i was so major kilig pa naman.. hihihi.. sana for realz yun para naman masaya.. hehehe..

lucas said...

shatts: [Sometimes, fact and fiction no longer have a clear boundary for the author.] i totally agree with this one. most of my posts are fiction but the essence is totally based on persona; experiences...

really? hindi umulan dyan for two weeks. ang lakas ng ulan dito sa laguna. it's actually raining when i wrote this post. emo kasi ako kapag naulan. hehehe!

---
wala ng katapusan ang usapang scandal esp. on TV. ang latest binuhusan si hayden ng tubig while on hearing. i find it preposterous really given they're on court.

anyway, it's my first time to read a book by gabriel marquez. it's very poetic. kaya lang hindi divided sa chapters kaya medyo nabobore ako..hehe!

Cheers!

van: lesson learned for you readers. basahin muna kasi yung label sa baba nung post. ahehe! thanks, van :)

ely: yeah fiction nga. hehe! kaasar ba? :P

Chyng: really? ibang klase talaga ang init ngayon, lalo pa kung nakulob ka pa sa pangit na bus...hehe! buti may kasama ka...meron nga ba? hehe!

desert aquaforce: thanks for giving your two cents, my friend :) i'm more inclined into fiction...i don't know exactly why. hehe! just be sure to read the label to be sure :P

jei: you thought it would be a scary post? bakit? haha! isa lang yatang horror post meron eh noong last halloween. hehe!

bitin ba? pansin mo mahilig ako sa mga bitin. it's either tinamad na ako sa pagsusulat or i'm to trying to shorten the story. dati kasi anghahaba ng post ko ang daming nagrereklamo. hehe!

RJ: mysterious ba? hehe! salamat sa laging pagbisita, RJ :)

elay: are you kidding? you're a great writer, elay! otherwise you'll not land on my rivercourt. :)

denis: cheesy ba kamo. i find it desperate actually! hahaha! thanks, man...

antonio: yeah...i totally agree. i think Matthews was right. When we grow old sometimes we tend to forget the significance of the simple things that bring happiness. This knowledge has taken from us by time, along with our innocence.

theo: hehe! you should've. but like shatts said:

Sometimes, fact and fiction no longer have a clear boundary for the author.

pom: [what ever happened to her shoe? and what is she a metaphor for?]

I really don't know. The image just materialized in my head. What do you think? Hmmm... I need someone to psycho analyze me. haha! :P

grace: thanks for dropping again :)

Rcyan: Sakay ka lagi sa bus at magvandalize ng mga upuan. hehe! :P thanks for always dropping by.

bena: thanks for leaving a comment, bena :)

PUSANG-gala said...

lucas---tama ka dyan Ron---gusto ko yung sinabi nya---

-----adults switch off by the time of adulthood, many of us have forgotten what a magic place this place is.....

ShatterShards said...

Yeah, sobrang init dito sa Makati lately. Umulan a few nights ago, but it only made matters worse, kasi sumingaw lang ang lupa. Mas mainit tuloy nung huminto ang ulan.

-----
With labels, it's all fun and games, until someone loses an eye. The problem is, pag authority figures ang binigyan ng labels, there is a hint of malice in it, and it is rather demeaning.

When peers give each other labels, it is mostly for fun. You wouldn't believe the names my friends and I have coined for each other! LOL at Gollum! I hope he isn't given to eating raw fish. Haha!

-----
re GGMarquez: Hundred Years of Solitude pa lang ang nabasa ko sa works niya. The reading is rather long (kasi para kang nagbasa for a hundred years) and the story is at times heart-breaking (no, it's not a love story).

re HK-KH scandal: may nagbalita nga sa akin about the water incident. Things are really getting out of hand, and the media (as well as the politicians) is lapping it all up.

-----
[you're a great writer, elay! otherwise you'll not land on my rivercourt. :)] looked my name up on you list... I'm flattered. ;-)

Angelo said...

hahahaha, dude, don't get me started! Psychoanalysis will probably lead to the revelation of some repressed sexual tension as it usually does.... I mean c'mon you find a wet girl with a missing shoe?... let's break it down:

"wet girl" - nuff said...

"a shoe" - may be construed as a sheath of some form meant to ensheath another object vis-à-vis a foot. In Latin, the root word for sheath is "VAGIN", hence the word "vagina" = a sheath for a phallus. A cellphone may be construed as phallic... not only did she ring your cell, you proceeded to give her the white handkerchief from your cell....

dude, you need to find the shoe!

Sorry if that was too Freudian for you hehehe....

KRIS JASPER said...

For some reasons, I feel like Im watching (or shud I say imagining...) a TV advert.

Nice one Lucas!

jei said...

Napansin ko nga lucas!!!! Okay lang sana kung bitin pero hindi masyado maganda ang pagkasulat. Pero perfect ang pagkagawa eh, so medyo nakakainis ang pagiging bitin, bwahahaha.

Pero Lucas, don't ever change your style kahit ano pa ang sabihin ng iba. Just follow what your heart and mind desire when it comes to writing. Keber ba ng iba kung gusto mo talagang medyo bitin ang storya mo o medyo mahaba diba? As long as happy ka.

*****

Really? Baka pwede tayong mag brainstorming about Harry Potter series? Hahahaha...Me, I like Prisoner of Azkaban the most. Excited na ako to watch this movie. Buhay na buhay na kasi si Voldemort!

Rcyan M. said...

I usually commute on a jeepney. Maybe, I'll try vandalizing the face of my seatmate. Hehe.

issshhh said...

Ang saya sana kung totoong nangyari no? Heehee.

I used to write short stories when I was in high school, pero naguon, hindi ko na magawa ulet. HAHA. :)

I love this entry. :)

amicus said...

love... love... love... :)

lucas said...

antonio: bakit nga kaya ganun noh? for some strange ways we tend define happiness is a very different way as we get older unlike during the days of our youth...

shatts: yun ang nakakainis sa ulan minsan. bitin na, mas pinaiinit pa lalo ang panahon. hays...

---
i totally agree. during our sophomore year we labeled our biology teacher "keroppi" because she somewhat resembled a frog. hehe! but i love her. she was actually my fave professor back in HS. she knows the label students gave were giving her but she has a very good way of ignoring it.

---
ang haba talaga. pansin ko nga ang liit maxado ng fonts. pansin ko sumasakit ang ulo ko while reading it. may eye problem na yata ako. i need eyeglasses! hehe!

---
yeah... very out of hand. may nagtext din sakin na nagsuicide na daw si katrina...it was a joke. it was not funny really.

---
hehe! you're a good writer, honestly. Peace out!

angelo: oh maaaaaaan!!! hahaha! i was laughing while reading your explanation. so in short, my latest post, basically says I NEED TO GET LAID. hahaha! you're probably right. i need to find that shoe! hahaha!

makes me wonder what my other posts would mean...hmmm...

Thanks for that. It was really fascinating!

KJ: commercial naman ng ano? hehehe! nescafe? hahaha! pom tried to psychoanalyze me. it turned out my post says that "I need to get laid", in a very subtle way. haha!

jei: my style? i don't even know if i have a style of writing or what name to describe it. but sure. i wont change anytime soon :)

sige ba? my bestfriend and i used to brainstorm about HP lalo noong hindi pa tapos yung series. inaabot kami ng madaling araw minsan. hehe! sa Books--Half blood cefinitely. sa movies azkaban. I liked how Cuaron brought it to the big screen. Can't for HP6. balak ko panoorin sa IMAX. kaw din! :)

rcyan: ako rin naman madalas jeep. Nakakapag-bus lang ako pag papunta ng Manila. Try mo yun. hahaha! let's see kung anong mangyayari. hehe!

issshhh

Allen Yuarata said...

sweeeeeett... simula ngayon, I won't be mad at people who desperately write down their digits on bus seats. I now feel the pain. nyahahahahahaha.

HOMER said...

Nice one ayus ah!! I remember those days when I have to travel from my place to Manila, those times when I am single and hoping that I'll found love in the bus haha..

HOMER said...

Nice one ayus ah!! I remember those days when I have to travel from my place to Manila, those times when I am single and hoping that I'll found love in the bus haha..

- A n g e l - said...

Real cute ♥
Though it would've been a little freaky if it happened in real life. I don't know. That's just me. Teehee.

flamindevil said...

aba hindi mo nga naman masasabi ang tadhana.naks.

malay mo nga naman, si ms.right,nandyan lang sa tabi-tabi.hmmmm

galing talaga magsulat.halimaw ka pareng ron.haha.

.pOot! said...

that's what i call COOL!

lucas said...

allen: thanks for your comment, allen. actually i'm against vandalism. hehehe!

homer: thanks homer! ano nang balita dun sa pacontest? kaw na ba ang blogger of the week? :D

angel: I agree! hehehe! Just imagine yourself sitting with a wet girl with a long hair on a bus. CREEPY!

flamindevil: thanks, flamindevil!

poot: thanks for dropping by again, poot :P

ACRYLIQUE said...

Wow..
And i am starting to vandalize buses.. :)

havenlei said...

so fiction pala ito... matinding imahinasyon a... kumurot e.hehe.

lucas said...

acrylique: APIR! thanks for dropping for following the coffin rock :D

havenlei: thanks, havelei :)

jonathan said...

We have many longings unspoken best declared by spoken words through poetry, narrations, or anything fictional. But adding elements of suspense, emotional attachment and witty lines make this entry an endearing one.

REDLAN said...

from the start seryoso ako habang binabasa ko ang bawat linya. bigla na lang ako natuwa noong nabasa ng guy yung text. galing ng approach. naalala mo pa ba ang number na sinulat sa likod ng upuan? makitextmate ako. lol

lucas said...

jon: thanks, jon :)

red: nako hindi na! lolz! nawala na yata yung sim kong yun! peace out! slamat! :)

kcatwoman said...

sa las pinas, pagandahan ng bus, wala ng bug infested, parang airplane na.

anyway,
ito mga gusto kong story, nakakakilig, shucks may pangalan ba ang characters?, hope may ending ang story. it was pretty, cute and sweet. love/romace is always exciting when it comes as a surprise.

anyway, i read one of the comments here about "love in the time of cholera", i dont like tht book at all. there wasnt any real love between the hero and the heroine kasi sa letters lang sila ..parang infatuation, ni hindi nga sila naguusap e, tapos i dont like the porn parts, so there.

istepf said...

"i think i found you too"

yunyun eh! :D

lucas said...

kcatwoman: really? i'm trying to recall kung nakapunta na ko ng las pinas...

thanks. and i agree. love always comes as surprise kaya exciting! ahehehe! wala akong maisip na pangalan eh kaya i delivered it in a monologue style.

really? hindi pa nga ako maka 50 pages dun eh. i wonder kung bakit... wala sigurong chapters at sobrang liit ng font. sumasakit ulo ko...

steph: haha! pwede na bang pang-commercial ng pizza hut? haha!

sweetham said...

wooh! I find this one very interesting. :) Cool. Nagustuhan ko ung plot and yung thought... :)

kcatwoman said...

im not sure pero hindi ko masyadong feel yung love in the time of cholera. mas nakaka-inlove para sa aming mga girls yung mga books na pride and prejudice, at persuasion.

pero mas intense yung love sa wuthering heights.

i think you'll like them cause you write mostly about love.

kahit na mostly for women ang novels na ito, i love the literature at that time, because love and romance is so very pure.

Niqabi said...

I was about to believe it was true!
However, I still would say Wow!
Ang galing...Para akong nanood ng The Lakehouse..