The Polka Dotted Umbrella
It wasn’t my choice to get polka dotted umbrella, but my mom insisted and I couldn’t reject.
I was 10, back then. Yet I understood enough and hated the girly color of it.
At times, when the rain came in after our school ended I avoided to take it out and would rather get wet. I was sure my school mates won’t let me just live with it. Especially, Ronit, my next door bully. When we were children, we were the best of friends but these days he didn’t even acknowledge me in school.
Obviously, my mom knew I did it on purpose and still tried to explain me how the judgement of others don’t matter. So, I did it. Three months after I got the umbrella, on an afternoon after school the rain pour started. I remembered her words and dared to open it. It took me a lot of courage to take the embarrassing shade out but I was close to my home & the road was almost deserted. I sighed with relief.
But oh, I wasn’t so lucky. I noticed Ronit waiting under a roof of a grocery store and my feet went cold.
I froze in my tracks and waited for him to go ahead. If he saw me now, my school life would be a mess.
I waited for a minute or two, but then the most unexpected thing happened. He checked left, then right.
‘All clear’ he must’ve said it and he took out the same umbrella I held in my hands.
“Another Polka Dots!” I laughed a little too loud but muffled my face.
He must’ve heard my laugh, for sure, because he stared right at me with his eyes open in terror.
His secret is in the open! He ran to me, his cheeks burning red with embarrassment.
“Look, Arush. I-”
“It’s okay, look.” I pointed towards my own display of embarrassment and he looked up.
He started laughing when he realized we are in this, together. “Our little secret?” He offered me his hand. “Our little secret!” I shook it & all those years of lost contact came back to me in that moment. Little did I know, an Umbrella would break our invisible barrier.