I wake up to the chirping of the birds. I sit up on my bed and look outside the window. The sun is finally coming out. The cold is making its way out. But the mist still lingers in the air.
It’s early. Yet, I’m no longer sleepy. I pull a sweater over me, and slowly slip out, so that the others would not wake up.
I pull the curtains apart, and find my dog awake. She does not move, as I come to her. She does not wag her tail, or leap at me in joy. She just stays there, looking at me… After moments of me just holding her, I put her belt on, and take her for a stroll.
We walk over the steep hills. The dewdrops are still there on the tea plants. There is greenery all around and the smell of the fresh leaves spread all over.
I breathe in, and take in as much as I can.
I keep walking, not wanting to turn back. I keep walking, even when my legs hurt. I drag my feet till I reach the stream. I dip my hands into the cold water. It freezes me, but I don’t pull them out. I let them become numb.
I see my reflection in the water, and when a tear drops into it, my reflection is gone.
When I pull my hands out, they are blue. Blue like the hills I can see in the distance.
The sun is totally out now. A man on a cycle passes by me. The day has started. And my final day has finally drawn in…
I make my way back home. I run down the hills, and my dog races with me. I tumble over when she leaps onto me. I laugh, and she barks.
By the time I reach home, I’m tired. I fall asleep on the steps of the veranda and wake up only when my mother tells me that it’s time to go…
I don’t move. My hands still feel numb. I pat my dog, and just sit there hoping that it all just turns out to be a dream. I want to find myself in my bed. I want my mother to wake me up cause it’s getting late for school, and not because we need to leave.
But no, I snap back to the reality. The house looks empty. There are boxes all over. We were really leaving.
I kiss my dog goodbye. She just looks at me. And when I turn away from her, she barks.
I sit down in the backseat of the car. I close my eyes. I don’t want to look back. I somehow take my tears in. The barking seems far now... It grows faint. I open my eyes once I cannot hear it any longer.
We cross the tea garden… I stretch my hand outside the window and touch the leaves. I can still feel the dewdrops. It was as if they were calling out to us, telling us not to leave. I stick my head out and breathe into the air. I take in as much as I can. I don’t want to let it out, but I finally do, and break down.
I don’t want to leave. I want to remain in the wild, among the trees…on the hills.
The sunlight dries my tears. It burns my skin. I stick my head back in. It’s silent. My parents, my sister and I…we just sit, not knowing how to react.
I fall asleep, and wake up only when my mother shakes me.
We are at the airport- our final destination.
As the flight takes off, I look down at the land I left behind me. I look at the only place I know I belong to...
My life changed after that. I don’t know if I like the change, but I know that nothing could be done to stop the change.
But I do know, that my heart still longs for a chance to run down the steep hills, and to feel the fresh water in my hands once again..
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