She ventured out to the open expanse of another country; another city which seemed and was far more complex than what she had seen so far. It was ironic that it did not look as crowded and busy as Manila for in the wide streets where cars careened, she could count barely a handful of the denizens. They walked from nowhere to nowhere, disappearing into another wide street as fast as cars. A stray cat here and there punctuated the sidewalk while the unceasing barks of gleeful dogs called out to anyone caring enough to pet them.
Her heart raced for she was so scared of the possibility something would go wrong. She might lose her way or get run over by one of those fast cars. Connor might discover that she had gone on her own and worry to death where in the world she was and call the police…a big ruckus for her small escapade. But escapade it was. The old country was nowhere near now. Water buffalos were a figment of her past, as the old house was, and the fields of rice that stood at attention underneath the blue, blue sky, cloudless and surreal.
Although worry etched lines across her face, there was also a tinge of excitement. Everything, being new, should make anyone excited including her. But what made her look forward to this day was the possibility that among the few people she saw walking the sidewalk, Lucius might be one of them. She just could not describe to herself how this would truly make her feel. Excitement was a very weak word. To a woman still in love with a man from her past, it was a brew of many human emotions – lust, love, anger, sadness, frustration, defeat, understanding, forgiveness – but never, ever, that emotion that told her to let go and move on; never that which demanded her to say goodbye to the history she had written about her life with him.
She turned a corner, then another, and another. Lost, both in time and space, Sylvia did not notice for she was getting acquainted and acclimated with her new home. A few more turns and by happenstance, she reached College Avenue. A smile descended on her beautiful and innocent face for before her she found out that her new home was not as barren as she thought it was when she first arrived. There were people keeping up with the daily drama, their most mundane physical recital of living was the way her new home dictated. There were rows of shops and restaurants, groceries punctuated with houses and apartments, greeneries with leaves wide and looming like the biggest bulbs of roses, and slow moving cars and buses. There was even a train station elevated high above the sidewalks and streets which she thought odd. Of course, coming from the old country, she dismissed everything as things she should immediately accept. Accept she did, almost losing the very purpose of why she went out on her own in the first place.