Walking toward a hot dog joint nearby campus, I saw Andrea running toward the bus stop. The bus was already leaving, and she knew it. Once, the bus left without her, I walked fast towards her.
“Andrea?” I said.
“Craig! It’s been ages! How are you?” She said, surprised.
“Right now, probably better than you,” I joked.
She laughed a bit. She was holding three heavy-looking biology textbooks, and her glasses were barely touching the tip of her nose.
“This is the second time this week. Now I have to wait 45 minutes to an hour for the next one,” Andrea said rather annoyed.
“I’ll keep you company if you want,” I said, begging every deity for her to say yes.
“You don’t have to,” she said, embarrassed.
I was starving, but something inside me was telling me to stay. In all fairness, it might’ve been the three coffees I had in the morning.
We sat on the bus stop’s bench.
“How’s been everything? How’s Michael?” I asked.
“Alright, I guess…and we broke up a few weeks ago,” She replied with a sudden sense of disappointment filling her face.
“I’m sorry,” I said, feeling bad for the fact that I was sort of happy because of that.
“Yeah, It sucks people still can’t break up before they cheat,” Andrea said now with a lower voice.
“I know, right? What’s the need for being in a relationship if you’re gonna cheat anyway?” I said, thinking about my ex-girlfriend Claire.
“It’s going to sound like a cliché, but I don’t know if I want to be in a relationship again,” she said without looking at me.
I was starring at her face, so beautiful. I couldn’t help but think who in their right mind would cheat on her. She was not just extraordinarily beautiful, but smart, perhaps the smartest person I knew.
“We all say that,” I replied.
Her eyes were slightly red, and a couple of tears were sliding down her cheeks. I dried them with my thumb wrapped around the end of my hoodie’s sleeve. She looked at me. I slowly took my hand away from her face.
“Perhaps it would’ve been different if we…” She said without finishing.
“Perhaps,” I said.
My eyes were lost in hers and hers in mine. I moved my body closer toward hers. She smiled. Andrea started moving her hands toward my chest and leveled my hoodie strings.
“You’ve always worn them unevenly,” she said and smiled.
She got closer to me. Our heads were inches apart. Then a hideous rumbling noise and the smell of diesel became part of the scene. Andrea did the longest blink ever. The bus’ door opened with a creaking sound. We stood up. I helped her pick up her books and handed them to her, our hands touched for a second. She looked at me, and I looked at her, we stood there for what felt like an hour. Our heads were as close as they have ever been, then we hugged. She got on the bus, and as the bus’s awful sounds were less and less present, I kept thinking what would’ve happened if we kissed.
According to Wikipedia, Mamihlapinatapai is a word derived from the Yaghan language from Tierra del Fuego. The word is listed by The Guinness Book of World Records as the “most succinct word.” The general understanding of the word is “A look that without words is shared by two people who want to initiate something, but neither start” or “looking at each other hoping that either will offer to do something which both parties desire but are unwilling to do.”
© Gabriel Berm