I wrote this with Krish Ashok's rendition of Scarborough Fair in the background. Listening to that was what made me write, so I'd encourage you to do the same while reading the post. It was a damp morning in the beautiful American Southwest; reflecting the mood of the day as well. It was the kind of dampness that lasts for a couple of hours after a small shower, the kind that prompts you to shake that low hanging branch playfully when you're walking alongside someone.
I had to leave in a couple of hours. It wasn't sudden, it was an eventuality. After all, I didn't belong there.
But I'd made up my mind before the big move that home is where the heart is, and my heart was here in this small university town, removed from light pollution and the sound of the freeway. I was in a house inside which you can hear the neighborhood creek if all was quiet. It was straight out of a tourism brochure or, perhaps, a postcard.
It was Fall, the season of colors. Just as the season begins with vibrant colors and ends with wilting branches and fallen leaves, my weekend had begun with a tonne of hope and was coming to an end, like a book that promises that there isn't going to be a sequel but doesn't quite give you the closure.
It was a Monday. It didn't matter but it didn't help either. I was going to hate this day, and the ones that followed. It was too early in the morning to cry, and I'd used up all my tears the previous night. I didn't quite understand what to do. Like an Olympic diver, no matter how many times she'd practiced it before, she had to do it one more time and this time, it was different. How do I say goodbye? What was I going to take away? How do I capture this moment until the next time? What if there never was a next time?
She was making breakfast, and the house smelled like cinnamon. It wasn't grandiose, it was cereal. But it was breakfast that smelled like summer. To this day, I'm not sure if it was the cinnamon, or if it was her. But when you are out in the meadow, you don't ask questions, you just take it all in. That's what I took away.
The weekend was long past. I was scouring the neighborhood Walmart to find that cereal. I needed to take it home with me, before that day becomes a memory.
I ate Cinnamon toast crunch for breakfast for the next month. Or perhaps longer, I don't remember. But what I remember is that it never smelled like summer, nor did it taste the same. But it was all I had to cling on to that day.
Cinnamon. Until next time.