I was just about to sit down when I saw someone out the window. It was only for a second but I already knew who it was. I quickly exited the cafe. I found him walking right into the parade and quickly followed him inside. I almost gave up on the search because of how many people there were until I saw him.
“Ale! Ale! Ale, wait up!” I shouted his name but he didn’t look back. After I caught up to him, I reached out and grabbed his shoulder. But it wasn’t him. Confused, I decided to go back home and relax. I mean what else are you gonna do on a Saturday? Be a “productive member of society”? Oh please.
But that wasn’t the only ghost I saw today. When I was at the grocery store looking for something to eat, I saw another one out of the corner of my eye. I called out her name, hoping to get anything from her.
“Madi?” She stopped. So she did recognize me.
“Madi, is that you?” Still no response. I was about to walk up to her until she said something that I wish she had said a long time ago: “Goodbye.”
When I blinked, she was already at the exit, opening the door. I dropped everything and ran after her. When I got outside, she was on the other end of the block, heading towards the crosswalk. I was about to reach her until I got hit by a cyclist. While on the ground, I looked up and saw her still walking but then she… disappeared? It was at this point that I knew I was officially losing it.
I had lost my appetite by the time I got home. I was on my couch, feeling like I just had the worst hangover ever.
I thought back to my old life before I came to Israel. Thought about my old friends. After they left me, I tried to move on. I tried to put past in the trash. But now they’re back and I have a massive headache to deal with now. I decided to sleep on it, thinking that I would feel better when I woke up. I didn’t. After I woke up though, Aaron texted me.
“Hey man, me and the squad are going to the fries place, wanna come?” I texted back saying yes because what else was I gonna do? Plus I haven’t eaten all day so he had me at “fries.” When I got there, I saw Aaron at a table for six, waiting for everyone else apparently.
“You came fast,” he said.
“Yeah well my house is just two blocks from here and I’m starving so don’t judge me,” I replied.
“You ok man? You look like you just got hit by a bus.”
“It was a bike actually. And I didn’t get any sleep last night. And I think I’m low-key hallucinating,” I said while he was still laughing about the bike.
“What do you mean you’re hallucinating?” he said after he was done laughing.
“I mean I saw them today.”
“Who’s the-Ooooohhh.” he exclaimed after I gave him a look to remind him.
“You haven’t talked to them in years right?”
“They were the ones who ghosted you right-”
“Yes.” I cut him off before he stepped on a mine.
“Ok ok, I was just making sure.”
“Sorry… I just don’t know why they’re popping up now. I don’t even care about them anymore you know, they left me and so I just moved on. I mean it’s their loss; their lives must be so bad right now without me. Why am I even talking about this right now? I don’t care about them anymore. I am a perfectly normal human being without them.”
“You’re spilling water all over the floor.” That’s when I saw that my shoes were wet after I already filled up my glass to the top with the jug that was on the table.
“Yep. It definitely sounds like you’re over it,” he said while I was trying to clean up the mess.
“I know right? I bet that if I saw one of them right now in front of me, I would just be like ‘Who are you?’ ” When I was done, I put my hand on the glass, ready to take a sip.
Then another ghost literally appeared right in front of me and I crushed the glass out of sheer shock. I felt like I was having a heart attack. It wasn’t Ale or Madi. It was someone else. She smiled at me. I tried to say something but I was choking up.
“Whoa, whoa, you good man?” asked Aaron. I was anything but good right now. She then started to walk out of the restaurant, wanting me to follow her.
“Hey Aaron? I uh… I gotta go now.”
“You just got here like a minute ago.”
“Yeah, yeah, I know, I know, I just uh… forgot something back at my place. I’ll be right back.” I then ran out of the restaurant, not wanting her to get away like the others. But she was already at the entrance to the beach that was a block away from the restaurant. I sprinted towards her as fast as I could, looking like a madman, but she just kept getting farther away. By the time I got to the shore, she wasn’t anywhere anymore.
“No, no, no, NO! DANG IIIIT!” I shouted in anger, falling to my knees when I was done. But when I looked up, I saw her near the water. I got up and slowly walked towards her but I still kept my distance.
“Hi,” She said with a smile on her face.
“Hi.” That was all I could say. You know that feeling you get when everything seems to be at peace? When everything just stands still? When everything just feels right? That was what this moment felt like.
And I never wanted it to end.