“Norwegian wood“, said the man with a grizzled beard and thick eye-glasses as he ran his hand across the polished surface of the dining table lovingly. “It’s a bit worn and some of the woodwork seems to have lost its original luster, but it’s been in my family for ages. I hate to part with it…but such are the times. Between you and me young lady, I’ve always felt there was a bit of magic in this wood…”
She didn’t really believe in things magical and mystical but she was drawn to the sincerity in the mans voice and without really thinking about it, it found its way into her home.
That was over five decades ago. Over time, that table had grown into a favourite destination in her home. It was where family and friends sat down to enjoy hearty meals together. It was where silent tears had fallen and hours had been spent laughing. It was where counsel was given, comfort received and prayers whispered.
Perhaps that old man had been right. Perhaps the table was magic. For it was around that table that she had been made privy to the secret of a happy life – Eat, Pray, Love.
-Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami
-Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert.
So, when he dropped subtle hints about things he wanted her to do differently, she made changes without batting an eyelash. She became exactly what he desired, and the changes? Minor adjustments in their relationship.
But, he still walked out on her. Leaving her sobbing on her doorstep. He said he was unhappy. That she was so perfect, she had unfortunately become quite boring. His words, uttered so callously, were daggers in her heart for she was now in a peculiar predicament.
She had successfully become Ms. Perfect, but she was no longer Ms. Right…
They came out to join her as she waited, hands on her tense shoulders. It’d been ages since she’d been allowed to meet him. Today they’d finally given in to her pleas.
When she saw him coming, she ran to him sobbing, “Dada!!! I miss you so much!” He swallowed hard, holding her tight in arms that were ordinary except for a band of lighter coloured skin on one finger. There once was a ring there; matching one the woman at the door used to wear.
Looking upwards, bitterly he asked, “Why, God, are the innocent always the hardest hit?”