Do you ever wonder about the one that got away?
Whether it was a 60-pound fish, a little black dress on sale, a pair of knee-length tan suede boots in a shop in Doha.. or the man that you let slip through your fingers.
I’ve been thinking about it recently. And been a tad wistful about the Ryans and the Daniels and the Sorshas that I knew.
Of course after time, most of the memories I have of them are good.
One bus trip, a scintillating conversation, innocent walks, a bicycle ride and chatting at the playground.
Making a new friend in an unfamiliar town, walking through the galleries of a museum differentiating between Astrology and Astronomy, chatting via the internet.
A friend’s wedding, a movie date and witty repartee, having nasi lemak in Pantai Dalam, exchanging notes via SMS.
These are the things I remember, and things I smile about. The connection, the ability to converse, understanding the same kind of jokes, the laughter.
It’s a form of escapism, of course. Somewhere you run to if you’re feeling a little bored or upset or lonely. It’s a lovely place where you can hide for a bit from the real world. A little place where you can ignore the whys and wherefores that the relationship didn’t work out.
I’ve forgotten all the arguments, the fights, the sulks. All best left behind for the sweet memories of the good times that we had.
Because don’t stories about “the one that got away” often get embellished with each retelling? – “the fish was huge, surely more than a metre long”; “that shirt would have fit me perfectly”; “he was the nicest, handsomest, most perfect guy I had ever met”.
But I don’t dwell on it too much, because I know, things that are meant to be would have been, and things that didn’t wasn’t meant to.
If it were meant to be, the Ryans of the world would not have gone to France to study and there meet the woman of his dreams. If it were meant to be, the Daniels of the world wouldn’t have migrated to Australia to set up a business and there meet the woman he recently married. And if it were meant to be, the Sorshas of the world would not have met a girl just after we called it quits, and within a year was married with a child on the way.
It was not meant to be. But that doesn’t mean we can’t think a little about the ones that got away, and smile.