The usual buzz was amiss that day at the airport’s arrival area. Advertisements played endlessly on clean white tiles of the floor whole day long. Vendors at the snack counters stood talking to each other about the cricket score of the day. The slow creaky baggage carousel mirrored the apathy of its few patrons. Most of them yawned, stretched and some just gazed into space trying to hold on to that receding mirage of a getaway.
One woman though, stood away from the crowd, fondly gazing at her husband waiting by the aisle. Her ringed fingers ran through long locks of hair and her sturdy frame leant on a pillar supported by wedged heels. She wished if only they could hit the beaches in the evening again, just as they did during all five days of their stay. Her smile broadened as her husband heaved a suitcase out of the carousel and gave her a thumbs-up. Well, one more to go. Her goggled eyes turned towards a slight figure jumping up and down to the right.
The girl was involved in a heated argument with her boyfriend which involved a lot of hand gestures. Her hair was tied into a tight messy bun. The red lipstick and blue nail polish stuck out even from a distance. As ‘Kafka On The Shore’ that was being waved around in the air started to show brunt of the argument, she suddenly threw her head back, gave a throaty laugh and thumped the guy on his arm. He playfully feigned injury at that.
The goggles picked up their youthfulness and undepraved freedom. Her fingers stalled and her brow knit with concentration, the woman’s eyes were glazed over. That smile which her husband wakes up to in the morning half-froze on her lips. A sigh, as light as a feather, escaped her just as a trolley rolled-up in front of her. Her smile matched her husband’s and as they started walking towards the door, her hand slowly found way to his.
If she had only looked back, for a tenth of a second, she might have seen a pair of jealous kohl-rimmed eyes following them towards exit.