I am at the Metallica concert, James takes a pause before a song and says (and I’m quoting from memory):
“We don’t care about the colour of your skin, or your sexual preference, all we care is that you are here tonight to celebrate life!”
And pretty lights leap and bounce to the lively music.
It’s the second night of the celebration of lights.
The pretty lights will dance across the sky, astonishing every eye.
The beach is swarming with eager souls. We are searching for a sandy spot left on the beach.
We find one by a middle-aged man with a friendly face who isn’t too protective of the exposed sand beside him.
There is still half an hour until the dancing lights appear.
He starts talking about how he is coming from the island and asks us where we are from. Once he is informed that we are also islanders who moved to the city, his enthusiasm peaks.
He regaled us with stories about all the beautiful placed on the island that he has seen, advising us to visit as well.
We ask him what brings him to the city, and he says fireworks. They are on his bucket list.
He has had lung cancer for over ten years. He will turn 59 this year. Cancer has spread to his brain.
“The body is like a bike and your soul is the rider. I have abused my bike and now no matter how good of a rider I am, the bike cannot take me too far”, he says.
My friend had been diagnosed with throat cancer a mere few weeks before.
The friendly man tells him to cultivate his mind; every moment has become more pleasurable and extremely precious with the looming thought of death in every corner.
He was told that cancer will give him no more than two extra years of life.
But here he is now, how? With thinking that he will be here. Mind over body.
“What you think, will become”, he shares.
The friendly man doesn’t look up into the sky before him. He watches the lights from the tiny screen of his camera.
I wonder if he doesn’t trust the tumor in his head to remember the burning dots stretching across the horizon, maybe he wanted to share his bucket list with the loved ones that weren’t there, or has he merely forgotten the present moment?
UPDATE: My aforementioned friend is thankfully cancer-free now.