This is perhaps the weirdest romantic experience I’ve ever had in my life, and it’s as funny as it’s sad. I’ll remember this story until the day that I die because it affected me deeply.
All started during the second half of the year 2000, I was at the time seventeen years old and it was the second semester of my Biology studies in Bogotá. I was taking the Invertebrates class, and because of a new change in the Biology program the students from the second semester were taking the same class with the students from the third semester. She was my senior and probably she was a bit older than me, I will never know; she was a beautiful girl, I remember her with a long, wavy, and voluminous dirty blond hair with some highlights, maybe a couple of centimeters taller than me, her style was not really the “biologist” type but she was quite cool, and she kind of had already earned a reputation of not being the brightest; which I honestly thought it was very unfair and kind of stimulated my sympathy for her. Let’s call her, Miss X.
Our eye may have met a few times, that subtle body language, that imperceptible signals, I don’t know exactly what it was, but I started to get the feeling that she liked me. Today I know I was right, that natural instinct to detect attraction never fails! And despite that I knew and that I kind of liked her too, I never tried to talk to her; the opportunity never came during class… yet it came later in the most unexpected way.
We were having a field trip down to the Atlantic cost of Colombia deep in the wilderness of the jungles at the Tayrona Park, what a paradise! The trip was exciting and very intense, and one of those days after a long session of forced labor chasing insects, we were on the bus back to the cabins we were staying at. There were more people than the bus could take so all the seats were taken and some people were standing; I was lucky to catch a place sitting at the window and next to me a girl in the class I’ve never met before, but somehow friend of Miss X. I’m sitting there happily ever after, when suddenly Miss X decided there was enough space for her too, between her friend and me… come on, it’s a bus! And there she went, she was wearing nothing more than a tiny bikini, she squeezed herself there and finally she ended up with one leg on top of me (to my inner satisfaction and torment). I honestly didn’t know what to do, shy as I was… and then as a perfect example of my sophisticated seduction techniques I decided to do what no man would dare to do...
I faked that I fell asleep.
Three years later we had class together again, I don’t remember which class it was anymore. It had been a long time since I saw her and to my surprise I still kept on getting those vibes of mutual attraction. And three years later I was still unable to talk to her… so when I had no doubts in my mind that there was something going on, I came up with the brilliant idea to write her love letters. Not only I wrote her love letters, but I wasn’t anonymous, so she knew it was me the one writing her… so I started sending her emails using the university accounts, I told her a million things, I told her that I was just paralyzed when she was close to me, I told her that I knew she felt something for me too, I told her about the moon and the sun, the oceans and the flowers, I told her many things because I wrote her many times. Miss X didn’t answer a single time, but she was not completely unaffected; she gave me obvious chances every time in class and I never took the risk to talk to her. I could feel in her behavior that she would welcome my approach and I never approached her… Today I’m not sure how much I could have touched her heart but once in the middle of the class, she was sitting close to me and all of a sudden she burst into tears and ran out of the classroom. Was it because of me? Again, I will never know.
And like that it came the last day I saw her, classes were over and I went to pick up the results of some exams right before holidays. The university was empty, and after I got my results I was going back home when I saw Miss X with the corner of my eye, she was walking in my direction; however, I kept on going as if I didn’t see her. I gave a few more steps when suddenly she called me:
I stopped and waited for her to come close. Then she asked me a completely random question:
“Do you know when the results of the exam are published?”
She knew that the results were already published, that was the only reason we were there at the university to begin with! But I didn’t get it, I didn’t get it at all. So I said:
“Yeah, they’re already there at the teacher’s office.”
Then I said goodbye, I turned myself, and I walked away from her!
That exact moment is the very same reason why I will never forget Miss X, because there, when I was turning I saw her expression of disconcert and confusion; it was a fraction of a second but it was so so so very clear: it definitively added to the transformation of my soul that at the time had recently started to happen.
Moral of the story: take your chances; take your chances at everything you do in life if you don’t want to live with regrets.