Adam and Eve. Part I, Short Story (Twisted Love Story).
Part I (of 3)
World came to its end, not literally, because the earth is still spinning, but the world as we knew it will never return.The disease has taken root so deeply, that only a few of us managed to survive.
Apocalypse. Actually many of us should be relieved, since we have been waiting for it, expecting it for a long time. So many movies have been filmed, so many books written, so many theories published... We really should feel a relief... As if, bored of our everyday lives, we couldn't wait for some tragic, irreversible change.
1. The Beginning.
I left Poland as a twenty-something year old. I went to a language camp in Mexico, and then broke through the American border, together with a wonderful family of Mexicans, who, just like me, desired something more from life, dreamed of a brighter future for their children. Wonderful people - so helpful and loving - from the time we met, they treated me as a member of their family. Not returning to Poland was the most difficult decision of my life. I left everything behind, a relationship, my family, everything I knew, and everything I felt safe with. I left the language I was born to speak, my home, my friends…
However, in Poland I have always felt like "nothing and nobody", surrounded by unhappy people, always complaining, with no hope of improvement. My new friends infected me with their willingness to fight for a better tomorrow. They invited me to their home, and soon I was involved in the secretive plan of crossing the border to our exciting future.
In the U.S. very quickly I got a job as a maid at a motel, along with Rosalinda, woman who gave helped me survive my few months back in Mexico. I truly earned pennies, but after less than a year I received a receptionist position, when my manager noticed that I learned English rather quickly and with passion. I already knew some English from high school, so it was always easier for me, than for my Mexican family.
Weeks and months passed ridiculously fast, and most of my time I spent at work, and learning the language.I felt that now I could achieve anything in life, because God gave me a second chance - to start a new life in a country where everything could happen. The only person, for whom I longed in Poland, was my mother. We wrote long letters and talked on the phone for hours. I felt terrible leaving her in Poland alone. My father died a few years ago, and my brother lived at the other end of the Poland, and very rarely visited mom. I felt a weight of remorse, but I convinced myself that I had the right to choose where and how I am going to live. From now on my life and my future were in my own hands.
2. An Ordinary Kid.
In Poland, after graduating from high school, I tried to find a job, but without much luck or effect. I was able to earn casual cash "here and there" to put it away for my dream trip to Mexico. I lived with my mom, and spent my free time with my friend, Angelica. Both of us were dreaming of a prince from a fairy tale, who would take us away from the bleak hopelessness, and our lives could finally become colorful and meaningful. We sat together recalling old times, our peers, and how their lives unfolded. We were killing time sharing memories from the school benches. I especially remembered Adam. We met in kindergarten. In first grade teacher sat us together. When I told my mom about it, she told me to immediately go to the teacher and ask for replanting. According to her, the boy had head lice. Mom didn't know him, but she apparently knew a lot about his family. Of course mainly from rumors, because Gronowice was a very small town, where everyone knew everything about you. That was why I always wanted to get out - to be able to finally be myself, not the person who the people in the area are deposited in the evaluation of school and family of origin. I wanted to start to live, without continuously looking back over my shoulder. In places like Gronowice everybody from the day they were born has attached a label, and that label for the majority of us had nothing to do with who we really were. If your father was a drunk, everyone saw you as a child from a poor, decaying family. If you were not doing well in school, you were always going to be a kid with no future - even when you grew up, you were always be remembered there that way.
And that sort of infamous label had just pinned Adam. From the time he was just a little boy. He came from a family, where there was no father, and his mother drank a lot, did not care much about her children, and had a new boyfriend every other month. At least that was what I heard. Adam appeared in school dirty, his clothes were worn out, unkempt, so everyone was of the opinion that he certainly had lice, and you needed to keep away from him as far as possible That was the way small minded people took care of things in a small, uptight town.
Of course, the teacher allowed me to change my seat in the classroom, and after that I didn't really have much to do with Adam. We talked maybe a couple of times. I thought he was a nice, ordinary kid, although he did not have many friends, but I always attributed it to his situation at home. Now I remember that when I was just a few years old, I kept wondering what could be done in order to make Adam look more approachable and "normal" - like most of boys in the class, so he could fit in. I imagined that I could run him a bath, ordered him to wash his hair, bought him some clean clothes, fed ... If I only could! In my childish innocence I wanted to be his friend, he somehow seemed close to me, but it was just easier not to worry about it, and concentrate on the “cool” kids. People made fun of him, but most of the time everybody just treated him like air. He was invisible...
I never knew why actually that boy got stuck so much in my memory, I probably felt sorry for him, and I felt he deserved a better treatment. I was sure that his innocent little soul has suffered a lot in his childhood, just because he was born in his, and not another other family, and he had to live in the arrogant, phony town.
3. Everyday Life.
My life in the U.S. started slowing down, became colorless, even a bit dull, but in love with "the land of unlimited opportunities", I felt that I could grow to be "somebody", to make my life count, when in Poland, most of young people could not find any work for years, and entire generations were crowding in tiny apartments. I was not particularly happy, but I couldn't complain. I got used to the American reality and my daily routine - I actually felt that I belonged to that world, and I should have been born here. I spent my time off with my Mexican friends, until the family has decided to move, because of Carlos, Rosalinda’s husband, who got involved in some obscure feud at work, and Rosalinda begged him to move away, fearing for his safety. I was incredibly sad to see them leave. For the first time in my life I felt totally alone, and I didn’t have anybody to rely on, but myself. Strange feeling, especially that as a child I was always "a mama’s little girl"...
But soon my loneliness turned into an everyday life, and didn't bother me too much. I usually spent my holidays at work, because motels are open year round, with no exceptions. My co-workers loved it very much! I also saved most of my earnings and rented a small, but nice and cozy apartment, and I even began to think of visiting Poland. The problem was that I didn't have a green card, so it was absolutely impossible. The lack of driver’s license also teased me horribly. Thank God Colorado is known for its public transportation!
The only way to get a green card would be through marriage ...
4. Christopher. Part 1.
I met Chris at work. It wasn't love at first sight. Neither at “second”. To be honest he was not my type. An ordinary guy, a little too thin, a little too tall. He was hired to be the new manager of the motel, after his predecessor was fired for theft. Chris was very quiet, he didn’t even try to elicit sympathy from subordinates. He came every day to work, divided orders, and then he was always burying himself in his office for hours, spending time talking on the phone with superiors and clients, and working on reports and promotions - leaving his office only when the booking was in trouble, or we had to head off disputes, to solve a problem.
Our relations were limited to daily life of the motel. I tried to do my work as best as I could. I did not want to step on anybody’s toes, especially that I was working illegally. Chris did not ask questions, just paid me my weekly earnings in cash, when no one was around. Apparently he got the command of a motel owner.
I was often worried, how long he would let me work here, and what would I do, if I was let go. Where could I find another job without papers? Fortunately the owner of the motel, Grant, was also the owner of a majority of businesses in town, so he didn't have a problem with paying a few of his employees under the table. He even helped me to open a bank account, when I didn’t think it would be possible, and for a while kept my money in a box under the bed. Grant had his friends and contacts, and apparently some power. He said that I reminded him of his daughter, whom he had lost a few years ago to cancer. I think Grant, by helping me, felt in some way as he still had contact with his daughter.
I was grateful to fate for everything – and mostly for the amazing people I met on my way, and I tried to live every single day like it was my last, not worrying too much about what will happen next. However it bothered me a lot, that I was living in this generous country illegally, that I created a life for myself in the place that I loved so much, but my existence was sort of in hiding.
Life went on in colors of gray, when all of the sudden Chris asked me if I would go with him for lunch. It was his birthday.
His parents and brother lived on the east coast and Chris said that he hates to "celebrate" in solitude. I felt a little uneasy with this invitation, but it didn’t seem right to refuse, especially with Chris knowing that I had no reason to hurry home after work. I finished my morning shift, and we went for lunch. I didn't want anybody at work to see me getting into Chris’s car, since I didn’t want to become a manager’s pet in my coworkers' eyes, but I figured if someone asked tomorrow, I would have said Chris gave me a ride home, because I did not feel well, and I preferred not to wait for the bus.
I was starving, but I felt too shy to eat. Our lunch passed by in a very strange, awkward atmosphere. I was actually mad, that I ever agreed on it. Chris drove me home, and that was it. For the next few weeks he didn’t even mention the time we spent together. I wondered what was that all about? I thought about him a lot, he sort of started to fascinate me. I imagined he had to feel alone, away from family, just like me. He moved to Colorado because of his new job, he didn’t know anybody here, his family and friends had their lives in New Jersey, at the other end of the country. Suddenly it appeared to me that we had more in common with each other, than I would have ever expected - day after day, I started to see him in a different light. I hoped he would invite me again to lunch so we could talk, I wanted to get to know him better. He, however, did not show the slightest interest. Apparently, he discovered the real “me”, or rather, I looked in his eyes like a heartless fool, looking at his birthday lunch so uncomfortable, like I was waiting for a conviction, stirring around like a spy, hoping that we wouldn’t meet anyone from work.
5. Christopher. Part 2
In the end I decided to take matters into my own hands, and invited several people, including Chris, for traditional polish Easter breakfast. Americans don't celebrate holidays in the same way as Poles do, so I thought that's a good enough reason for a small party to "show off my Polish heritage." I put a lot of work into preparing a traditional polish meal, and it seemed like the event was going to be successful. Chris actually did not RSVP, but knowing his ways of being reticence, I didn't worry about it much. I prepared boiled eggs in mayo, baked an Easter cake, I bought polish smoked sausage. A few people showed up, but Chris didn't come. I was disappointed. I was wondering why all of the sudden I felt so attracted to this man? A guy who I actually didn't even know, and who was never before the object of my interest ... I was deeply disappointed, even shedded a few tears, but I decided to shape up and let go.
"It wasn't written in the stars for us."
...TO BE CONTINUED...
Part 2 (of 3)
Part 3 (of 3)
All names, events and places described in this story are fictitious, and any convergence is absolutely random.
© 2012 Aga