Midday at Smooch café, rain, dark shadows of bloom hang above me. This isn’t how I wanted it to be. The little table at which I sit tucks me at a corner, with clear views of the outside world at my fancy. Seeing the Kafkaesque interiors, the marble-topped tables and the range of silk-upholstered seats, the ladies dressed in casual vogue garments, the gentlemen clad in raw suede jeans tucked into timber rain boots, all speaking in an exquisite visible chorus of music, economy and art.
The man who saved me was named Willem Klopper. I had fallen into an abyss of despair and solitude which had aggravated my mental fortitude. The consequences of my failures would continue to bedevil me, eating away at my consciousness. I had recently lost my position at an Advertising Agency not so long ago, and the symptoms of that causality would shake me to my very being.
To think I would move mountains to be here, only to be swayed by the wind. The leaves grew early that year, and the slanting rain sprinkled along the surface of the petals. Gazing out from within, I remember counting every drop as it dripped onto the wet concrete.
Ding! The sound goes as the front door of the Cafe is swung open. A familiar figure rushes in, ducking the rain. His soft curls, darker now as they’re soaked through the strands, fall onto his face. I know him. I ignore him. But eyes cannot avoid meeting a familiar gaze.
“Hector! Howzit, buddy?” Willem says with a wide smile.
“Willem. I’m fine, man,” I say softly, counting the minutes until he’s gone.
I have nothing against Willem. We used to work together before our agency let us go. He found work. I didn’t. I could never help the deep feelings of shame and embarrassment of that fact.
“I’m great, just thought I’d pop in for a frozen yoghurt,” Willem says with enthusiasm. “Actually, I’m glad to see you. I came across your CV a while ago,” Willem says.
“My CV? Where?” I reply, worried.
“You applied for a Content Writer position at Amok Digital Agency, right?”
“You work at Amok now?”
“Yes, and as a Social Media Manager. I have a say in who I work with, and I moved your CV to the top.”
“Why?” I exclaim.
“I staked my career on it. I worked with you before and I think you’re brilliant,” Willem says, smiling. “Well, I told them I wanted to work with you. I was there when the agency went down, and I felt the devastation that you felt. You deserve a chance like I had,” Willem says with a sly smile.
“Thanks, Will. I appreciate this!”
Willem did all that he could for me, but in the end, I still failed. His company directors had decided to go a different direction. But, I wasn’t sad. I blamed the world for not giving me a chance. The idea that humanity is without its fallacies was peculiar to me, as I had viewed humanity’s very nature as a fallacy in and of itself.
But, what Willem did, and was willing to do, restored my faith in our potential to do good. I had realised that the world had nothing to do with my pain, and there are always people willing to help you out of the pits of despair. I shudder at the path down which I was to go, if I looked at the world through dark eyes. But, this gesture changed my life, and forever, I am grateful.