9. The Leg

How lovely it would be to walk on the beach, at the break of the dawn, wonders Alex. Walking uninhibited, devouring nature, in its ultimate glory. Neither a fast or a slow one, just a saunter, to remind himself again, that he is alive!

He does not get up, but continues to lie in the bed, after switching off the alarm and opening the windows to let the fresh morning air, sweep away the stillness and stench of the night at the hospital.

Closing his eyes, he imagines opening them at sea-side, watching the mellow splashes of the waves, gently descending at the shore, trying to wake them up. Walking alone on the beach, his skin pecked and them drenched by the morning breeze, getting intoxicated and high on the fresh air and life.

It was a beautiful night, stars were twinkling brightly, light breeze blowing enough to let one keep his shirt on an April night, at this small fishing village of Arambol, by the sea. The moon was supposed to come out any moment and spoil the star spangled banner party.
Alex had rented a cheap room, about a kilometre away from the beach and this night, watching the stars from his balcony, he felt restricted and inhibited by the canopy above. Life had so much to offer and all he could get, was a view in only one direction.

He wanted to experience the magic of that beautiful night under the vast expanse that life had to offer, of which so little, he was allowing himself, under that roof.

Alex gets out and starts walking towards the beach, just close to midnight. High on the night and quite a handful of alcohol, he puts on his favourite Beatle's play-list on the mobile and keeps it in the purse, and out it plays, "A day in life", that night.

As he took the turn near the Church, a speeding motorcycle screeching out from the dark, hits him sideways, throwing him in the air, on to the footpath. Too scared to witness the damage that he had done and the obligation, which came along with it, the biker was gone, the way he had arrived.

His shoulder strung purse was lying a few feet away and as he efforts to pick it up, he is blocked by an un-bearable excruciating pain, rising from his knees,to the pelvis, on to his shoulders, stopping at his head. Like a pain-train, which picks up a new wagon at every station, reaching its destination and then de-railing over there, spilling out everything which it was carrying, amplifying it's carriage many times.

Alex crawls to his purse with great difficulty, flipping out his mobile, swiping it open and long presses "1", fast dialing his friend and current landlord, Gaston.

Since that night, every morning, when he longed for a walk on the beach, the incident of that night, played like an old creaking record, which seems to have stuck, as it was about to encore.

It was not agonising that he could not move, but he could open his eyes and still had to long to see the sea. He had been so near and still so far from those blue waters.

Gaston had got another room booked for his friend in a guest-house at the beach and the day doctor allowed him, he moved him to that sea-facing room with a view.

"So long my friend, so long"; says Alex as he settles down in a chair in the balcony and looks at the sea from his new home.