The woman held on to her hat as she and her boyfriend fell backwards onto the deck. The crowd made a collective gasp at first, but upon seeing the couple unharmed, jeered and whistled. One of the crew was quick to help the couple get on their feet. The woman struggled to get up as she held her hat in place with one hand while holding on to her boyfriend. They walked unsteadily towards their seat in the front row amidst the jeering of the other passengers. One of the senior crew held a megaphone and asked the passengers to calm down. He then reminded everyone that staying at the bow could be very dangerous, especially during rough weather and that no passenger was allowed to stay there at any time during the trip.
The woman's friends gathered around her to console her, but she ignored them. Her boyfriend tried to console her as well and placed a reassuring arm around her shoulders, but she merely pushed his hand away.
"Looks like Kate Winslet got her share of the limeli
The woman's head bobbed above the surface of the water, her eyes wide open and visibly scared. Her boyfriend continued to shout for help, but was not able to do anything else. The ferry continued to propel forward and it would only take a moment before they lose sight of the woman.It was a split-second decision. Lisa took a quick glance at Nestie who seemed to understand what she was about to do. Lisa grabbed the life vest held by a fellow passenger to her right and jumped overboard.Lisa felt the cold water from all sides as she sank. She used her hands to quickly reach the surface and looked around her. The ferry had already distanced itself from where she was, the white foam created by the propellers quickly disappearing in the chaos of waves and ripples created by the rain falling on the water.The life vest Lisa carried when she jumped was just in front of her and she grabbed it towards her before it got lost. She scanned the surface of the water and tried
Lisa wanted to strip off her wet clothes and change into dry ones shortly after boarding the ferry. The crew were quick to guide her to a private cabin to change clothes. She soon emerged from the cabin more comfortable and energized. Together with the passenger she rescued, Lisa was given hot soup as they were interviewed by one of the ferry's crews for their incident report. The captain was also there to personally thank Lisa for her bravery and to check if both women were comfortable and properly attended to.The passenger Lisa rescued was also in better spirits and thanked Lisa for her help. The woman's boyfriend was always at the woman's side and tried to explain his helplessness when she fell overboard, stating that he could not swim. The woman merely avoided looking at her boyfriend and was quickly comforted by her other friends."Looks like it would not be a happy ending for Kate and Leo," Nestie remarked when he and Lisa were back at the cabin. They were allow
The bus that Lisa and Nestie were riding seemed to belong to a repair shop rather than the road. Its metal body was in desperate need of paint, its wooden seats did not have cushions, and the windows were merely openings on the side of the bus, having no glass to protect the passengers from the elements. It was fortunate that the bus was traveling westward and the last of the sun's rays were disappearing on the horizon. Without air conditioning, raising the wooden boards that served as blinds would also prevent cool air from entering the bus turning it into a moving oven.The bus parked at the terminal near the Cardena public market. As the passengers alighted, they were assaulted by street vendors who were offering wares placed in bamboo baskets. There were a number of different products such as fiber slippers, wood carvings, and paper weight souvenirs, but most of the products being sold were local food delicacies and rice cakes wrapped in banana leaves. Lisa and Nestie found
“Aunt Susan!” called Lisa excitedly as she ran excitedly towards the woman in white who came out of the main door of the adobe house. Lisa dropped her bags to the floor and gave the old woman a hug.“How are you, Lisa?” asked Susan who took a step backward to give her niece a good look. “You’re thinner and your skin looks sunburnt! Just what have you been doing to yourself?” exclaimed the old woman as she ran her eyes on Lisa, looking at her from head to foot.“I’ve been doing a lot of freediving recently, Auntie,” answered Lisa, smiling widely at her aunt.“You should take care of yourself more. Your mother wouldn’t want your skin too dark like that. She had always wanted to have a fair complexion like me, but unfortunately, she got your grandfather’s skin,” said Susan.“I’m fine with a good tan, Auntie! Don’t you think I look better dark skinned?&
Lisa opened the door to the guest room and switched on the lights. As she looked at the familiar furniture and the large windows at the opposite wall, memories of her childhood came flooding back. It was her own room that she shared with Celie when they were still very young. The two beds, placed on opposite sides of the room, were still there although the covers had been replaced with plain blue cloths instead of the seashell prints whose details Lisa could still remember. She walked towards the bed where she used to sleep and removed the covers. She knew that the blankets and pillowcases would be different but still half-expected to see the seashell prints underneath. Instead of seashells, there were modern floral patterns that, although still beautiful, lacked the cozy feel evoked by the seashells she remembered.She found her old wooden closet next to her bed and opened it. It was empty and there was the scent of air freshener that tried to smother the slight smell of
“You did what?” asked Nestie, bewildered.“I climbed down my bedroom window through that tree,” replied Lisa nonchalantly.“You said that like you were just going down the stairs!” exclaimed Nestie. “How old were you? That looks dangerous!” Nestie walked beside the tree and looked up at the bedroom window.“I was six. It’s not as dangerous as it looks,” said Lisa as she walked beside Nestie and likewise looked up.“Not dangerous! You could have broken your neck!” said Nestie in a loud voice. “Perhaps you do have that ‘wild streak’ in your genes,” he added.Lisa laughed softly. “Explain ‘wild streak’!” She challenged Nestie and she slapped his arm gently.Nestie merely crossed his arms and looked away.“Whatever you were thinking. You could have used the stairs, you know,” said Nestie.“You know what? I
Although not the kind of ghosts that you’re thinking of, dear Nestie, Lisa completed the thought. She had not turned on the lights in her bedroom and she looked at the flickering shadows casted by the branches of the tree on the floor. The moon was bright, making the contrast between light and shadow more defined. Lisa looked at the small movements of the shadows as the breeze shook the branches and leaves of the tree outside her window. There were no distinct shapes and the movements were more or less random, but she gazed at the shadows for several minutes, remembering the time more than a decade ago when she was in the same room and watching the shadows from her bed.Her cousin Celie was sound asleep at the other side of the room while the young Lisa had just sat up in bed, holding the sheets to her neck as she listened to the wind blowing outside and seeing the moving patterns of shadows on the floor. She had awakened in the middle of the night after a frightening dre
Lisa touched her face and realized that tears streamed down from her eyes. She sat up in bed motionlessly for what seemed to be an hour recalling her past. She had somehow forgotten the details when she first arrived in the adobe house, but seeing her old bedroom had triggered memories that she was not quite ready for.The next morning, Lisa woke up refreshed and in better spirits. The events of the previous day when she rescued the woman who fell overboard seemed nothing more than a memory that happened years ago. She went downstairs to have a quick bath and, as soon as she had finished, felt more like her usual self. She swiftly changed clothes and let her hair hang loose to dry. She realized that it was cumbersome to be going down every time she needed to go to the toilet although it was something that did not really strike her as odd when she was living there as a young girl.When she was ready, she walked out of her bedroom and down the hallway to Nestie’s room.