Part VII - Welcome To Belgrade
Part VII - Welcome To Belgrade
The plane continues with its descent over all the numerous snow-covered roads and building before flying over a wide, pale field.
Moments later a taxiway appears with an Air Serbia aircraft holding short of the runway. A couple of meters back, a Lufthansa plane is on its way towards the runway. Then the terminals come into view. Planes take over most of the aprons by the jetbridges, with some planes having service trucks by them, while others not.
We continue our descent, the airliner lowering towards the runway.
I see us hover only feet off the cleaned piste, right before...
Immediately everything begins to shake as I hear the breaks being deployed. Moments pass, loud shushing sound echos throughout the whole cabin. A loud, defined roar, once again, dominates any other noise. The thrusts reversers.
Shortly afterwards, we taxi off the runway.
"Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Belgrade, current local time is 2:50 PM..." The flight attendant begins, before welcoming us with both Serbian and German.
"Well..." I begin. "Here we are, in Belgrade.".
"Yeah..." James replies.
Silence ruled over us, only the soft voice from the flight attendant could be heard. I look out the window, admiring the snowy landscape. Moments later, a muffled roar could be heard from the Air Serbia aircraft as it raced past us.
"Hey, Ana..." James's voice begins, his soothing tone caught me by a surprise.
"Huh?" I turn to him.
"Welcome to Belgrade..." he says, through his authentic smirk.
"Well thank you very much. I wish you too a very warm welcome to Belgrade..." I say as he chuckles. Once again, silence descends upon us and very soon the realisation that I might never see James again sets in.
"What's with the frown?" James's soft and soothing tone pulls me out of my trance, I find myself staring somewhere into blank space.
I quickly shake my head out of my saddened thoughts. "It... it was nothing..." I say. Though I can clearly see him not convinced by my words. Seconds pass before I see him shaking his head.
"No..." he begins. "There has to be a reason for that frown on your lips..." he adds.
I give in with a gentle sigh before a gentle chuckle could be heard from me.
"Looks like I can't hide anything from you, eh?" I say, looking up at him.
"You certainly got that right..." he replies, giving me a wink. Seconds later, I divert my eyes elsewhere.
"It's just that..." I begin, trying to swallow down the forming lump in my throat. "I am going to be honest and say this flight, this one right now, has been the best flight I have ever been on to this day.".
He chuckles at me.
"And if I may ask, why is that so?" He asks seconds later.
I find my eyes beginning to tear up, what is happening to me!?
I bite my lip to prevent the accumulated tears in my eyes from rolling down my face.
"I guess its because of you..." I say and simply stop there as I know I will breakdown if I list all the ways he made this trip better. In such a short time, I managed to really attach to him, make some sort of a bond with him. "I... I guess I have really attached to you..." words unnoticeably slip out of my mouth.
I look up at him just to see his smile gone, his face is straight, something I did not expect.
"Y-your eyes are watery...". I notice the confusion in his voice, but I smile timidly to his reaction.
"What can I say..." I begin, letting out an odd chuckle or two. "I am a pretty emotional person, I am a sucker when it comes to goodbyes..." I add.
Then, his straight and somewhat worrisome face evolves back a gentle smile.
"The reason for your sadness is me?".
I hesitantly replied with a nod.
He lets out a gentle cackle, which only causes me to raise an eyebrow.
"I am sorry..." he begins, a big smile still patched on his lips. "Not a lot of people, that I have just met, feel like that about me. They wouldn't even come close to crying...". By the end of his sentence, that smile on his face ceased and a slight look of sympathy returned and took its place.
"Well, I am different..." I reply.
I notice the way the sides of his lips slightly move upward as his handsome facial features relax. "I can't agree more..." he says in a loud whisper. He then went on to add, "In a good way, of course," only moments later.
He always manages to surprise me, this time, he caught me off guard with how his hand lands on mine. He then takes a gentle grasp of it before his thumb caresses the top of my hand, reassuring me.
"Don't cry, there is literally no reason for you to be sad," but something about his words causes my chest to ache, making more tears accumulate in my eyes. Suddenly, an odd tear manages to find its way down my cheek, but before it could reach the curve of my jawline, it was gently wiped away by his finger.
"Hey, no tears, no sadness, okay?..." he says, cupping my cheeks. "It pains me to see you upset..." he adds after a moment of silence, tilting his head as his eyes never leave mine.
It takes a few seconds but I find myself hesitantly nod to his proposal.
From there, we were back to looking into each other's eyes. My eyes then moved from his and down to his lips, before admiring and memorizing all the features of his handsome face. I don't know if I will ever meet a man as handsome as him.
Then suddenly, a gentle tug caused us both to turn our attention out the window. I both feel and see the aircraft turn left.
We move forwards, passing a few idle planes at their gates before we turn into our gate. Taxiing further, we slow down moments later before coming to a halt by a Wizz-Air aircraft.
As always, the clicking of the seatbelts is heard throughout the cabin before the actual seatbelt sign turns off. Only seconds pass before just that happens, simultaneously, the engines shut down.
I peer out the window and see the spinner of the engine slowly but surely slow down.
Around us, passengers stand up and peacefully fight for their turn to grab their belongings from the overhead compartments.
"Well, this is going to take a while..." James whispers to me to which I reply with a giggle.
"A giggle?..." he mutters under his breath as a smile automatically spreads across his lips. "That is what I want to see and hear, you happy..." he adds.
I smile to his words as a slight blush takes its place upon my cheeks. I can tell he notices when he snickers at me.
An ominous buzz sends my attention back to the window in which I see numerous ground crew walking by the plane, some unloading the luggage off the plane, while others walking to their workspace somewhere around the plane.
A couple of minutes pass and the first of the passengers begin exiting the plane, soon the rest of the line followed.
"Don't get me wrong, I love flying, I just hate when this happens..." James whispers his comment to which I, once again, chuckle in agreement.
"I can't agree more with that, I'm the same," I whisper back.
Some time passes and both James and I stand up, he takes down his carry-on from the overhead compartment. I thankfully didn't bring a carry-on.
Very soon he begins his movement towards the exit while I follow his closely from behind. Within a couple of steps, we reach the front of the plane. The flight crew says their goodbyes to us and we are off the plane.
Immediately, I sense the much-missed sense on Belgrade airport and I welcome it full-heartedly.
I catch up to James so that we are now side by side.
Seconds pass before we enter the terminal building. I can't help but look around me, I have missed Belgrade so much. I heard that there some work with expansion and renovation began to take place in the airport, but I am glad that very little has changed since I was last here. Although, that was about 7 months ago. Not a lot can change in 7 months... But then again, I guess it really depends on what we are talking about.
"Have you missed Belgrade?" James asks.
I face him just to see his eyes settled upon me, a small, pleasant smile grows on his face.
"Yeah..." I begin, smirking in return. "I mean... it is my home after all... who wouldn't miss home?".
"Touché...", he responds through a smile, to which my smirk immediately broadens.
Minutes of us walking pass as I exchange my looks from James to my surrounding and back to James.
Then, I see him walking closer to me before wrapping his hand around my shoulder and pulling me into him. I find my hands in the pockets of my jacket as I rest my head against him. His action makes me feel as if we have known each other for years when really it has only been hours.
It's also then that the saddening thoughts get the best of me...
It's going to be soon when James and I will have to say our goodbyes. I feel something in the pit of my stomach. Sorrow.
I let the sadness swirl in me, I don't have enough energy nor the optimism to stop it.
I'll never see him again, its life, I know it is, but something about that it left a very bitter feeling that I can't shake off. Another lump began to form in my throat.
"Saddened again?" he asks.
His voice frightens me out of my thoughts. I am too preoccupied in the formation my answer, that I don't realise his hand retracting from me.
"Tell me what it is that is bugging you. Be honest..." he adds before I even get a chance to respond to his first question.
"If it's because of me, I told you, there is no reason for you to be sad..." he furthermore claims.
I take a deep breath. "The truth?" I ask.
"Well, that is what we all aim for in today's world, right?".
I respond with a hesitant nod.
"Nobody ever has made me feel that way you do..." I begin, swallowing whatever is in my mouth. "When we separate, I feel like I will be losing something very valuable... you...".
I hear him chuckle in amusement.
"Did I ever mention how cute and adorable you are with your words?" he asks, glancing down at me.
"Quite a few times..." I reply, at first chuckling, before the feeling of sadness as it once again intensifies causes more tears to accumulate in my eyes.
"We said no crying, remember?..." I note the way he is trying to make me, somewhat, cheerful. But it's not working.
"I know... but it's easier said than done..." I reply.
Silence drops upon us.
"It's your teasing that I am going to miss the most though..." I break our silence. With me saying that I feel new tears come flooding into my eyes.
"Don't cry..." his tone suddenly changes, introducing some sort of softness.
"Who knows, we might see each other again soon, very soon, sooner than both you and I think," he adds.
"But you sound... confident that we will meet up again...".
"That is because I can see that you like me...".
As if it was an instinct, my body was about to deny him. But before I managed to do anything, I stop myself. I think over what he said.
'He's not wrong...' I hear my mind confess seconds later.
I once again think over his words.
I wanted to further question what his words meant, but I decided to leave it be. Some things are better left unknown and unsaid.
Better left as a mystery...