The fairy tale with Ikumi is over.
We met a little less than a year ago, three days before her birthday. We were introduced by her friend, whom I had met in my buddy’s restaurant. I still have the photograph.
Things were passionate before I even had a clue what I was getting myself into. When we went to the beach together she wore this incredible two piece white bathing suit. She has a fantastic body and knew how to show it off to her advantage. And on top of that she was kind, good with children, and patient.
But somewhere along the line, things changed. She’s gotten colder. Over the last two months things have gone sour; she’s claimed to be too busy with work and other things to meet me on the weekends like we normally did, and the one day we did meet she was only focused on her shopping. When I asked her what was wrong she just made up some excuses. We were supposed to meet up for the first time in a month, and then the day before she sent an email saying, “Meet me at the XX market tomorrow, I have to tell you something.” Women never tell you that when they have good news; if it was good news she would just say it outright. And so I worried. Was she cheating on me? Did she think I was cheating? Was she pregnant? Did she have some other disastrous secret to divulge?
She dragged me around to the shopping mall, then up to Hiraizumi where we had promised to look at the fall colors together (they still haven’t changed), and to another shopping mall, and she still wouldn’t tell me. Wandering around to look at clothes and makeup and accessories with me following awkwardly behind, trying to guess what the hell she wanted to say but wasn’t going to say right then. Seeing her the coldest I’ve ever seen her before, not even looking me in the eye and refusing any attempt I made to talk to her about anything or so much as touch her on the shoulder. She had obviously made the decision well in advance and nothing I could say had the slightest chance of changing things; I don’t know why the hell she dragged it out so long. Today wasn’t a chance to say goodbye; it was a wrenching reminder of things we had often done together. This time we were doing them alone, coincidentally while adjacent to one another. Inevitably she just sat on a bench in one of the shopping malls for several minutes and I asked her, “What are we doing here?” before she finally decided to go home.
It wasn’t until we got back to her car that she finally told me. Of course it was a breakup. She said that “her feelings had changed several months ago” but she had never made any attempt to communicate that or fix things. She gave the stereotypical reason that we were from “two different countries” and that it was difficult for her to communicate. (For the record, we spoke nothing but Japanese. It was difficult but I managed.) She offered to pay for the cancellation fees on the plane ticket, as if that makes anything easier. I guess that passport she went through all that trouble to get is gonna rot in her closet.
Part of me wants to be bitter. Part wanted to poison her mind after she left with “I still love you, why are you doing this?” or outright stab her with thoughts like “of course you dumped me because I’m just a silly foreigner you wanted to fuck, you got tired of me and you don’t have the patience to try working things out”. But it won’t fix anything, it won’t bring back the woman I met, and the damage she wanted to do is already done. She already made her decision well in advance. When we parted, I drove back to Furukawa and got the oil changed on my car, like nothing had happened. At that moment for some fucked up reason I actually felt relieved, relieved that the bullshit of the past two months had finally come to a close. But right now I hurt. Not the screeching sting of having the skin scraped off your right kneecap, but more the anguish, the regret? of having suddenly lost one of your five senses without knowing you should have said goodbye to it.