YOU NEVER REALLY LOSE YOUR DEMONS, YOU JUST FIND A WAY TO SUPPRESS THEM
“Mukhetwa come on we’re going to miss our flight,” her mother calls up the stairs before Mukhetwa finally appears out of her room, rushing down the stairs. “I’m here let’s go,” she uttered breathlessly. She sat silently in the car mindlessly watching her hometown pass by. She was from a Christian family, attended a Christian school in a Christian community. Somehow all that was gradually beginning to change. Her father had just gotten a major promotion which forced them to uproot and move to Durban. The fact that she was leaving behind the only life she had only known surrounded her like a grey fog and she was just a sailor lost at sea waiting for the dawn.
Durban was otherworldly, ethereal even. She stared in awe as a girl walked off the plane with pink curls, a mini skirt, crop top, and leather boots. She watched as she ambled confidently, swaying her hips, passing then with no greeting and eyeing her as if she possessed something they didn’t. She headed to the arrival area to fetch her luggage but was stopped midway by a couple of guys around her age calling her names that even she was afraid to remember. Everyone just seemed to be chasing after time, scurrying from point A to point B. They were all so over engrossed in their smartphones they could hardly notice the people they were bumping into. The natural order of things of the world seemed to be upside down and inside out. An overwhelming feeling was creeping up her throat as she tried to make sense of all she was seeing. “Hey, you okay? You seem a bit flustered,” her mother’s query pulled her out of her near panic, to which she responded with a warm smile and nod.
As they journeyed on she couldn’t help but compare Durban to her hometown and the contrast was more than palpable. She stared in bewilderment at the glass buildings that seemed to kiss the sky, how each road seemed to be intertwined with another, the number of cars that could move at an unimaginable speed with such ease. She watched in wonder as cars of all shapes, sizes, and colors pass by. Hillsongs flooded the car while she tried to see everything, memorize all the sounds, colors even style, storing them for future uses.
Her father pulled into the brick driveway of a homey, wooden cottage enclosed by nature. The green of the vines climbing the wall complemented the vanished wood perfectly. The grass was slightly overgrown on the front yard and the rose bushes needed trimming but even with its faults somehow its simplicity and aged design gave it character. There were two windows on either side of the hose, on both floors, with an additional circular window at the top. A washed-out grey door leads to a living room and a flight of stairs. Making her way past the badge carpet she noticed how almost everything was made out of wood. She turned into the kitchen and was instantly greeted by a breakfast bar with a gas stove. Luckily all the cupboards were already filled with something she is more than keen to cross off her to-do list. “Mukhetwa, help your mother get the bags, would you?” her father’s strained voice echo’s through the house as he makes his way up the stairs with a box of her things. “Yes sir,” she found her way back, before dragging each of her bags up the stairs as well.
White sheets covered all the furniture and bed in her room but even with the sheets, she could see the grey-blue color scheme. The room had a bathroom, finally, she could render the days of waking up early to be the first at the showers behind her. The bed had a wooden canopy with designs and markings carved into it. She sighed in exasperation as she mentally listed all the things that needed to be done; she knew for sure that this room would be a lot of work. She walked through the faded blue door to examine the bathroom. It had a shower and a bath! Three spotless glass walls enfolded a showerhead, with the fourth wall and shower floor being a crème white. There was a basin next to an egg-shaped bathtub. The wooden floor and walls had seen better days but could easily be mistaken for a deliberate design.
She walked out back into the room, having a coughing fit from the dust she removed all the sheets and got to work.
She subconsciously gave herself a pat on the back, placing the last of her ornaments in their rightful place. She had her doubts in the beginning but the room turned out surprisingly decent. She could hear laughter as she descended the stairs, she had always aspired her parent’s relationship and like many others, wished to share something so rare and passionate with someone as well.
After grace was said, time found a way to slip through their fingers and before she knew it she was walking back up the stairs. She stood under the showerhead, letting the warm droplets relax all her muscles. With every breath, she took the slight anxiety of tomorrow gradually subsided. Her fingers wracked through her chestnut hair. She rubbed the wild berry foam all over her skin, watching the water rinse it off. She shut her eyes with a sigh tilting her head towards the water, relinquishing all her doubts to be washed down the drain.
A suttle knock tugged her out of her serenity. She stepped out, wrapping herself in a lavender towel before stepping out slightly dripping. “Mom,”, the surprise in her voice was evident. “Oh, sorry honey,” she gave her a breathy laugh,” I just wanted to make sure you had everything for tomorrow,” her mom questioned as she inspected the room. “ Of course mom it’s just high school, thank you,” Mukhetwa grinned at her. Her mother always went above and beyond when it came to her and she truly appreciated her. “I love you, goodnight,” she kissed her cheek. “I love you too, mom,” she uttered. Her mom finally shut the door behind her after another round of quizzing and reassurance. Mukhetwa’s pillow welcomed her head as her bed cocooned her body. She drifted into sleep as she vaguely planed the next day.
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