When João entered the Jazz Club and saw in the distance the silhouette of her, with that unique bright beauty, he almost fainted.
His heart beat rate increased so much that even Charlie Parker would not have been able to play with that crazy and nervous speed.
When his friends and him found a table, he realized she was just in front of him, one table away. He was scared to death. “I will pretend I haven’t seen her, I want to look like a hard guy” -thought, while his heart beat rate continued to climb to the stratosphere.
Paula, meanwhile, looked relaxed, she just seem not to care. Maybe she was not the happiest girl in the world, but she was strong, self-confident and self-conscious about her beauty, dreams and power. She just does not need anybody to achieve whatever she wanted, and this strong independence made her even more appealing to João.
The band started to play but João was not able to hear any music. “I haven’t felt like this since I was a child” -he realized. In fact, he had forgotten that innocent, crazy, even stupid childish love that most of us experiment when we are in primary school. Who was not feeling nervous and scared about talking to the most beautiful girl of the school?
Minutes keep walking slower than the band’s tunes, and João finally got the courage to say hi to her. He stood up, get closer and approach her with such a clumsiness movement, that he looked like fighting against a tornado rather than saying hi to a girl.
“That’s it” -reflected João while walking to the toilet. “I looked like a stupid and she realized it, there is nothing I can do about it”. Somehow, this feeling of defeat, make him more relaxed. He was able even to say a couple of strange and stupid sentences to her later, more like a “fear overcoming” training than anything else.
Finally, he was ready: “I like you like I’ve never liked anyone before, no matter how stupid do I look, it does not matter to me, because I love you”. He just waited to the right moment to say a twelve year-old sentence with a thirty-something mouth.
No luck, Paula was not paying even the slightest attention to him, so João got discouraged and again, defeated.
When Paula reached the stage, everything was over. João dreams and hopes were crashed by her indifference. Nevertheless, he found enough courage to look at her through the whole song and that felt good. She looked as beautiful as usual, but the song she was performing ended in a huge mess that made her look more human, imperfect and earthly. João then realized that the essence of love is loving those imperfections, loving the unexpected and that above all, love does not need nobody to be better or worse, to achieve something amazing or fail miserably. It just does not matter. Not at all. So he ended up loving her even more after all that mess.
When João left the Jazz Club, he felt a mix of emotions. He felt sad because he really liked Paula like nobody else before. True. But then realized how lucky he was to feel again such a rich and full array of emotions, feeling so alive, so worth of living and breathing…that he suddenly smiled: “Paula has given me the most amazing gift I’ve ever could imagined. And she probably would never know it. She has given me a reminder, a message of how wonderful live can be. And now I want to flight again to achieve my dreams with more commitment than ever before”.
(Photo by Shinya Suzuki, Birdland). Used under CC. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/
(Text by Pablas (Pablo González Rodríguez). Under CC. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/