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The Rich Trip

Chapter Six

Disclaimer

Our journeys are stories of our own. This is mine and I’ve allowed some of these points to stand, in spite of being corrected. It is not a guidebook, trip diary or marketing piece for the Sunday paper.


This is semi-fiction: A fictional description of a true story.

Previously

The difference in time or distance did not impact mothers, they were so similar.
A red helicopter was an ambulance.
One morning, the neighbour’s kid was seriously injured while rowing.
Candida’s father felt guilty about teaching him that.
I didn’t think he should have, as it was absolutely not his fault.

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Chapter Five| The Flying Fifth
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Sail Of Six

From The Stockholm Archipelago to Sandham

Salt, sea, sun. 

Helluva fun! 


I wish I could join Candida’s summer cheer. However, that joy wasn’t at all infectious. Hey, I love Mumbai, but in the summers, there is nothing to cheer about. With 40 degrees and sweat, discovering anything pleasant is an odd phenomenon. Anyhow, it is and will always be home.  Does it really matter? 

“Winters are so dark here. Literally, you know? Sun says hi by 9ish and bye around 3. The blue water becomes a stiff sheet of white ice without boats. I love the water. I’m sure you do too, you have so many beaches back home, right?” Candida then bore into me with a profound metaphor. “Think of a heart monitor, life is in waves. A stiff goddamn line means death,” grumbled Candida.

That morning, we were headed to Sandham to meet Candida’s friend Simone and her family. Sandham is on the island Sandön. It was about an hour’s row from where we were. It is an important natural port in the archipelago.

***

The cultural impact that Italian pizza has had all across the world is not at all surprising. There isn’t a city in the world without a pizza outlet of some sort. Älskar pizza was just a few steps away from the deck. It is a spectacular restaurant where they serve great pasta, meat and other Italian classics.

Simone was on a sail-vacation with her husband, three kids, and their dog – ‘Pig’. (Funny story: the youngest daughter wanted to adopt a pig, so they adopted a dog named ‘pig’ instead).The six had been sailing for two weeks and had two more to go.

“When I thought of sailing, I had this scene set in my head, you know? Some glamorous celebrities sunning themselves on deck, watching their friends frolicking in the crystal blue waters below, moored somewhere uber Instagrammable,” dreamed Simone. “But you know what I found? For yacht holidays, you don’t have to be famous or even have any experience in sailing,” she continued excitedly.

Apart from the calm of the ocean, there was privacy and the flexibility of being able to explore numerous destinations in one trip. Wow, I’m so sold. I loved the concept.

And they built a life they loved

Laughter masked the truth of them all. On one side, there is the Ekström family. An ideal one – parents, 3 kids, a dog. The six appeared happy together. On the other side, a single mother. I am not strong enough to have ever gone for such a lunch. I admired Candida for that. Maybe I’ll ask her about it later.

Maybe the waves wash off the fears

Or maybe they hide the tears 

Maybe one sail is all we need

To stop how we bleed

***

On our way back to Stockholm (my home-away-from-home), Candida showed me a picture of Simone holding Pig. That picture made her smile. Happy looked good on her.

I gingerly enquired, “Er Candida? Didn’t you think of Adam and his father when you met them?”

“Not really. I have mastered the art of admiring them, without questioning my own. Know this Richa, you only compare your stupid Instagram stories with their highlights,” she looked sideways at the water, “Adam’s father, Andrew, is someone any woman could easily fall for. You saw that, right? I fell too. He was every dream I’d ever had. I am glad that I got to meet the love of my life. Hardly anyone does. However, he was a flirt and I don’t blame him -” she exhaled a homourless laugh, “The most important thing was, he was a doting father to Adam. We waited until Adam could take care of himself. I then gently told Adam without ruining that ‘daddy image’ for him.”

Wow okay. But without Adam’s response, this tale sounded too good to be true.

“Of course Adam was hurt. But more than that, he was grateful that we made sure he lived his childhood in a bubble, free of any tragedies. Right now, he encourages me to respect my life and to choose whomever I love. And about Andrew, well, they are great friends. Oh and I told you, he adores Phil,” Candida concluded smilingly.

If my story was so unique, so different, why would I ever compare? It was not worthy of comparison. To hell with Simone. Huh.

Some names and identifying details have been changed to protect the privacy of individuals. In case if you are not happy with the content and/or the images here, please write to me at therichdiary@gmail.com

NEXT
Chapter Seven: Seven new jobs


If I was a duck, I wouldn’t have to do this job, would I?

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Story

Chapter One

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Disclaimer
Our journeys are stories of our own. This is mine and I’ve allowed some of these points to stand, in spite of being corrected. It is not a guidebook, trip diary or marketing piece for the Sunday paper.
This is semi-fiction: A fictional description of a true story.

Previously…

An introduction
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Chapter Zero


Chapter One

The First Time

“Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Stockholm Arlanda Airport. Local time is nine hundred hours and the temperature is 17°C… seat belt… personal belongings… overhead bins… deplaning assistance… thank you…  looking forward to seeing you on-board again in the near future. Have a pleasant stay!”

Wheels of luggage trolleys scratched the floor. Each one possessing its own story. I hugged myself, holding the thick and cosy lemon-coloured jacket close to my chest. The warmth was welcoming in the air’s chill. The energy it held felt vibrant. The sight of scarce people without any interruption and leisurely going on about their business, looked unreal. A handful of cars were parked orderly. The ground was so spotless, an ant would go hungry looking for a grain of sugar.


Hmm well… I wonder how Candida looks. Didn’t I have her picture? Let me see.

I opened the email from Lion’s club.

Dear Richa,

I hope this finds you well. I have informed Mrs Rajput (your college professor) regarding your attendance. Here are the details of your host families and an overview of the camp.

Family I

Initially, you were assigned to Mr and Mrs Hedlun. However, they had to attend a medical emergency. Ms Candida Nordin has amazingly agreed to host you (at very short notice). She is an air hostess and usually keeps busy. Due to a minor leg injury (almost recovered), she is on leave that week. Do express your gratitude as well. Candida resides in Stockholm with her son, Adam. As he is elsewhere that week, she has generously offered you to stay in his room. It’s a neat apartment without any pets. Candida will pick you up from the airport.

Lions Camp Viking

It will be held between 24 July to 7 August 2011 at Fagerudd Conference centre, Enköping. Like yourself, there will be 15 others representing the nations they are from. Our camp provides a safe, fun and active environment in which you can learn about different cultures and discover new friendships.

Family II

You have been assigned a host family for the one week after camp, 7-14 August, to the Martinsson family. They live in a big house in the country not too far from Enköping, where the camp will be. They have a swimming pool and a stable with horses on their premises. Their two daughters are married and not residing with them. Hence, you will have your own room at the residence. The son lives in another bedroom. They will drop you at the airport.

I have attached some pictures here FYR. Do let us know about your travel plans. The mail addresses are in the ‘CC’ field. Please contact me, should you have any more questions. We look forward to receiving you.

Yours sincerely,
Lucas Black
Youth Exchange Chairman


Candida (from my first host family – my host mother) was slightly different from the photo sent by Lucas. She was almost as tall as my father (5’11”) and as elegant as my mother. Her two gracious grey eyes gave her the appearance of always being respectful. She had aptly donned a salmon coloured shirt, beige pants and white shoes. They matched her blonde hair and milky skin. She walked like she owned the place, without noticing any strays. 


Some names and identifying details have been changed to protect the privacy of individuals. In case if you are not happy with the content and/or the images here, please write to me at therichdiary@gmail.com

NEXT

Chapter Two: My Second Home

Discover the new home-away-from-home in Adam’s
den.

Adiós, amigo!
Thanks for reading and catch ya next week.
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