The sun was glaring fiercely above the trees, as if trying to make a statement about its existence, just in case any of the earthlings below forgets, drowned in the constant noise and things to run for. The air has this hushed quality of a quiet lazy afternoon that lulls you to sleep, with occasional soft sound of motorboat slowing down, navigating its way through the forest.
She felt contented.
It was a very small mistake.
A press of finger that is a few seconds too long, until she realized that she was in the process of deleting all the gallery folders in her phone memory. All three thousand something of images, now gone, and irretrievable.
Is it really irretrievable? Sitting herself on a bench nearby, she asked herself that question, her first reaction to the disaster.
And then, does it really matter? She found herself already moved to the next question. And somehow it felt more important than the first one.
A motorboat passed in front of her, gliding smoothly above the murky water, and disappeared behind the forest on her right side, She stared at the rippled water left by the motorboat, gurgling quietly and died, returned to its silent form.
Her mind started to reeling, recounting names that she could contact to save the three thousand something of images, trying hard to remember the folders in her external hard disk, or any other back up that she might have made. Might have, but not really sure.
The tangled branch in the forest was messy but real, like a house that is not too neat and pristine. A home. The murky water was so murky and looked so comfortable and secure in its murkiness and firm in its silence, despite the motorboat traffic on its surface. And the frogs. Now she realized, there were the frogs, making their noises from one end of the forest to another. It wasn't loud enough to be distracting, but it was loud enough to confirm presence. It was constant, like the sound of muted radio frequency.
Everything was lovely, and muted. Even the glaring sun was muted by the thick layers of leaves.
And to her surprise, she found that brokenhearted as she was, the shock, irritation, and whatever negative emotion supposed to be existed in the wake of the missing of thousands of images, was muted. They rippled for a moment, gurgling out of obligation, and died down without struggle.
With this thought, she continued her steps on the pathway made of logs, in the midst of the thickly tangled mangrove branches.
"So you're going to try to retrieve it?"
"No, I don't think so,"
"I don't know."
Of course she knows why. She didn't have it in her to fight for it, for the thousands of images she held so dearly. It was not there. Whatever it is that should be there in the mind of a person who claim to love taking pictures and had just lost thousands of unprocessed images, it was just not there.
"I decided to let them go. The images. I'm not going to try to retrieve them."
"I don't know. It feels like the right thing to do. Letting them go."
"Three thousands is a lot, you know"
"Yeah, it is."
"Imagine how much space it takes in your heart, how much weight it carries in your heart, all this time."
"Yeah.That's surely one way to look at it."
"And I think it's kinda fit for the situation. Some of the images have been there for too long. I kept procrastinating to process and post them. Some images have been there for years. And some images are of people that I'm not very keen on remembering, people I had part ways with on an unpleasant note or disappointment. And I just realized that."
"Then it is time to free some space in your head, in your heart."
"I guess it is, yeah."
It was right before the new year, anyway. It's only fair to give the space for new things to come; new images to capture, new stories to tell, and more room for the steps to move forward, freed from the weight of memories holding them down.
She smiled a little at the thought.