Today I sent a love letter.
I can't even remember when I did that the last time. It must be years, maybe a decade ago. In times of internet, email, mobile phones and SMS it seems so strange to write a letter like that.
But this time I had no choice, and I had to write it in English - which is neither my own language nor the language of the one it's addressed to - since it's the only language we have in common.
It feels strange to drop an envelope into a postbox and settle down to wait. I hate waiting. But I will have to wait for weeks until I get an answer - if I ever get it. Because that letter has to go a long way, all the way to India.
Bollywood is creeping into my life more and more, it's colourful madness seems to be slowly winning over the German sensibility and practicality that used to rule my brain.
If I write the whole story, this post will get really long. Even the short version seems to be half a novel. But anyway, here it is:
I worked for a Indian film team all March. I was very busy becoming a tiny part of Bollywood right here in the middle of Europe, being with the mostly Indian crew all day and sometimes half the night - working 15 hours per day, and still, to my own surprise, finding enough energy to go out, have a glass or two of beer, and talk until two or three in the morning. (If anyone wondered: That's why I never posted all that time.)
To my utter confusion and embarrassment, I fell in love with one of the Indian crewmembers on the very first day, for all the wrong reasons. Remember my last post? The one about Raju aka Govinda? Well, that guy reminded me of Govinda - there was something about his looks, his movements, his smile, that pulled the same strings in my heart. And there I was - instantly crushing on him, but I resolved not to let it cloud my vision, not to let it impede my work - best, not to let it show at all.
So I did not seek his company, and at night, when I went out for a drink, I went with others.
But whenever I looked at him, I found him already looking at me. And in that team of almost a hundred people, we ended up sitting at the same table for lunch quite often; or standing in the same corner, or having a glass of tea at the same time. Then we would talk a little (if we could understand each other's English, which wasn't always easy), laugh a little, and meet again a few hours later, for a couple of shared minutes or just seconds.
My resolve finally eroded. And I fell again, this time for reasons that seem right to me: Because he was charming, gentle and courteous, shy at first and confident later; because he always ignored the jeering comments of his colleagues when he sat down beside me; because he is a good companion and an amazing dancer, and because he loves to laugh and to make me laugh.
And when I finally admitted to myself that I really fell in love, the film crew had just left this country and was on its way back to India.
Bollywood has taken over. I feel caught in a mediocre script. The first act in this movie was mostly comedy, the second a funny and sweet little romance, but now there's finally a moment of real drama: I do not reach his hotel in time to say good-bye, his bus has already left.
Cut to: A plane starts. Cut back: Comic heroine slinks back home.
For a whole week I was depressed, and angry at myself for wasting so much time trying to be sensible. Finally I decided to make up for that mistake, and - if possible - give us a second chance. I don't care any more that he lives on another continent. I don't care that he doesn't speak my language nor I his, nor that his job isn't as 'good' (or anywhere as well paid) as mine, nor that he's younger than I am. I don't care if this match is the most unlikely one on earth, because I feel like in a movie and there has to be a Happy End. I only have to make it possible.
He doesn't have a computer, thus no email. All we have for communication is SMS, at least he's got a mobile. I did not call, because I don't want to risk my precious message to be lost in translation, but I asked for his address and got it.
And I sent a love letter today. A message that will take a week to reach him. In times of digital mail and instant delivery, this seems an eternity. How many weeks before I get an answer? Will I ever get an answer?
Here this Bollywood film has its cliffhanger, big enough for a long intermission.