Serendipity. A happy accident. A pleasant surprise. A good fortune. Or, just plain luck…

For the many romantic souls out there, the mere mention of the word brings in hope, excitement, dreams, wishes and something totally inexplicable. It’s a feeling tough to experience and hard to come by yet the charm lives on and the desire burns on.

It all began, on my many escapades, with me making myself comfortable by the window of the corner coffee shop. Sipping my hot chocolate and making sure I get the glimpse of the fast moving life out of the window, I trained my eyes to set them away from the setting sun. It was a cosy Friday evening, when going home wouldn’t make any sense unless it would be to alleviate the waiting of someone in there…

There he walked out of the mall, blue shirt and black pants, tired of the tiring week and bored of the boring work. Ordered a cup of coffee and found a spot out on the sidewalk in the middle of the rush hour footfalls. Boorishly he started charting the apps on his iPad making sure the chaos was still alive. In between he would take stock of his surroundings with a quick glance, sip the bitter water and swipe back to his charts.

He was part of the eternal crowd keeping track of the time they wait for someone something somehow and somewhere bump into them.

In the distance, the sun was setting and the twilight brought in a sudden breeze. He was three blocks away, clad in black, one shoulder shouldering the laptop bag and the other brandishing the phone call. He was part of the undying crowd, thinking about the past, planning the future, missing the present.

He was two blocks away while the ballet of glance and sip and swipe had just ended the circle.

He was one block away.

The traffic signal went white.

While taking the sip of the coffee, the glance fell on the black suit crossing the road. While brandishing the unending call, the sight caught the blue shirt sipping.

The distance began to subside though neither the glance nor the sight lost their beeline.

The call ended, the sip finished. The phone went down, so did the cup. Both the lips curved into smiles. Irrespective of the life around, their eyes only caught their smiles.

The barista had a chance to make another cup for the gentleman. Once outside, a quick look clarified that the only spot available was on the table in the middle of the sidewalk in the midst of the dwindling footfalls.

The coffee cups were just props. The table top was just a support. The air was just the enclosure.

I was an audience to their moments. The missing glances, the absent-minded touches, the misplaced gestures, the omitted words and the lost world. I was glued to the story with the rest of the universe just nonexistent.

My hot chocolate wasn’t hot anymore, nor the time any lonelier, neither the wait worthless.

Someone once said – there are no accidents.

I beg to differ.

Life is an accident. An accident that is impossible to avoid. Life is a surprise. A surprise that is sufficient enough to amaze. Life is a fortune. Life is just plain luck.

Here I was, witnessing what can be feasible when the universe conspires.

The sun had set, the lights were on. The day ended, night began. The empty slot was filled, wait was over. The present was being lived, the future being worked. An accident just happened, surprised me with its awe, fortunately, luckily!

The Friday night wasn’t so bad after all. Maybe one day, I shall wear the blue shirt.

Just then the barista tuned on the radio. And the sidewalk had the subtle kiss, the quiet embrace, the hands held, the walk walked and the song played

Oh this has gotta be the good life
This has gotta be the good life
This could really be a good life, good life


(First published in winter 2011 release of trikone under the name ali)