She had needed to get away for long. Yet, work had kept her occupied. Finally, she managed to leave all her responsibilities behind and give herself a break.
She was sure she needed an ocean; the sound of the waves, vast expanses, quiet spaces, stars, sky, close to nature, it all seemed to allure her.
When she arrived, it was just what she needed. She sat in a restaurant by the beach, ordered a bottle of beer and some prawns, pulled out her feminist book and a box of cigarettes. The words made sense to her; the beer lowered her inhibitions; the cigarette smoke calmed her. All was right with her life.
She was busy reading when a Lady, clearly not Indian, asked if she could share the table. She nodded and got back to her book. The Lady, dressed in a cotton flowery dress, now introduced herself. She smiled in response but only to be polite. The Lady ordered herself a beer and pulled out her book. It wasn’t an English one. She couldn’t make out the title, though. They let the other be as they merely shared physical space.
Men in groups, several couples, both Indian and foreign, were in the restaurant with them. All engrossed in conversation and laughter. Eventually they paid their bills separately and headed out. She felt a tingle down her spine as they silently walked down the star lit beach. It was peaceful. The silent presence of a stranger, too, felt relaxing. She waved to the Lady as she decided to stare out into the ocean for a while. The Lady waved and walked on. There was something magical about sharing space without pressure of conversation.
She sat down in the almost dark corner and smoked her cigarette. The stars made for the best company. With a little buzz and a full stomach, she felt relaxed and inspired. The waves crashed on the rocks nearby. It was all going to be okay.