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Arubafirina "Rule your mind or it will rule you."


UNITED KINGDOM | Thursday, 15 May 2014 | Views [990] | Comments [3] | Scholarship Entry

He says he likes my stories. That people with faces he’s never known, and places he has never seen, are interesting, because they come from me. Jack is my life support, the only person who cared when I found myself in a foreign land, my father’s land, where blood should have run thicker than water, but didn't. They say the British are cold, especially the Welsh, who grow as icy as the weather that consumes them.

It had been six years since I’d seen my father. Six years since I’d felt the squeeze of his arms around my back. The long hours at a restaurant back home filled with fickle customers and unfair bosses, and living like a pauper for months on end seemed justified when I excitedly made my way through the arrival’s gate at Heathrow six weeks earlier, greeted by his tired smile. I’d made it, but the picture I'd set up in my mind was completely different to the reality I was yet to face.

"What was your earliest memory of love?" Jack asked me one day, as we sat by the stream at the back of my father's pub. He was the only person I'd met who hadn't been affected by the isolated mentality of the village I now called home.

All I could think of was the feeling of losing someone. When you lose someone, that’s when you truly experience what love is and how much it can burn. But did I ever really have my father to begin with?

Blood is a funny thing. It tricks you into believing that people will be there for you, no matter how neglected you feel, or how many times you keep running back to an empty home.

A father who asked you questions, but never really listened to the answers. Who couldn't spend time alone with you out of fear he'd catch a chill. Who's new family meant more than a scar he'd covered up years before.

But you do wonder, sometimes, what made you so avoidable. Why their eyes skipped over you, looked through you. Until you realise that, really, you were never part of their existence anyway. You just drifted through at some point, caught on to their lives with tendrils of hope. You never gave up, and that was the saddest thing of all, that you're still out there somewhere, trying desperately to see someone who will, for one precious moment of time, finally see you.

“Run away with me."

Tags: 2014 Travel Writing Scholarship - Euro Roadtrip



This is a beautiful story. Made me think and smile.

  elisa May 28, 2014 7:47 AM


Thanks, Elisa, that means a lot. :)

  Rhiannon May 28, 2014 2:33 PM


The romanticism of this piece carries throughout and supports the narrative well. I connected with this like I didn't think possible in such few characters. Well done you!

  Ed Best Jun 7, 2014 4:12 PM

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