C’est la vie’

Here is my Dark Globe entry, which was inspired by true events. The names, places and chronological order have been changed for obvious reasons. I do not wish to accuse anyone and this is just my side of the story. Thank you for all your wonderful comments and kind words (:

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You know those times when you wish you hadn’t trusted your instincts? Well, meeting Benji was one of those times for me. What started off as a playful online encounter turned into a disaster, a disaster I paid £ 2000 for…

Benji and I met in the spring of 2005, I wish I could say that it was love at first sight but it was more like love at first type. We met online on the “has been” social networking site, Orkut. Yes Orkut, even the name made me cringe and trust me that is not because I am a social media snob.

Orkut was established way before Facebook and was like Friendster minus the privacy. People could freely add each other and leave messages on other people’s profiles, which made it, well, creepy. I have never been the one to add strangers to my social network profiles, so it was no surprise that when I received a friend request from a slightly chubby looking boy, all I thought was, who on earth is this.

I just wanted to make fun of him because he seemed like a troll and added him just for the sole purpose of poking fun at him. However, once I added him, I was curious to find out who he was and started looking through his photos. There were not that many to be honest but those that were there, were supposedly of artworks done by him. Let’s just say, I was 16 and impressed because he was oh so “profound”.

Hence, I left him a message informing him that I really liked his artwork and would like to see more. He was quick to respond, I believe it took him a total of two minutes. He told me that he would like to add me on MSN, another Internet has been.

Well that is when it started, we started chatting every day and mailing quotes to each other. Mind you, back in the day it was cool to do so. Soon enough, video chatting and calling started and we couldn’t spend a day without each other.

One may wonder, what is so special about that. Well my friend, what is so special about it is the fact that Benji was in fact my best friend from kindergarten. My family moved around a lot in those days and we were never in one country long enough for me to form close bonds with anyone. However, Benji had remembered my name and had recognized me from one of the childhood photos that I had added on to my profile. He did not tell me that though, I only found out about it 4 years after the incident. Can I just say fuck my life here?

Things were perfect for a while, we visited each other over holidays, did all the clichéd couple stuff but it was a long distance relationship and there was only so much time that we could spend together. Finally, in March of 2006, I decided to pull the plug and to put an end to things. Benji was getting really clingy and I know that may seem impossible for a long distance relationship but shit happens.

A few months later, when Facebook became popular, I received another friend request from a stranger, but this time it didn’t take me long to recognize him, it was Benji. Talk about a blast from the past. Now enrolled in London School of Economics and studying for an Economics degree, Benji’s appearance had completely changed. I could praise his high cheekbones and handsome features but that will be a waste of time and words. The fact of the matter is he was freaking hot!

We started talking and telling each other about our lives and all that had happened in the past few years. Benji apparently had a girlfriend from school and was madly in love. I, on the other hand, was single, and had just had my heart broken. He was very supportive and started talking to me every day to help me get over the pain. Two months later, I started dating a guy, who was perfect or at least seemed to be.

Over the next 4 years, I was in a relationship and like every other couple we had our fair share of problems, except for the fact that my then boyfriend had a penchant for cheating. That guy basically couldn’t go a week without cheating and did not know how to treat a girl. In retrospect, it is a miracle that I even lasted 4 years with him.

All along, Benji knew about all of our problems and had time and again advised me to break up with him but for some strange reason I was not able to do it. I was in, what is commonly referred to as, love or it seemed like it anyways. Call it growing up, the break up eventually did happen and if there is a God I would like to thank him for that but not for what happened afterwards.

It so happened that Benji had feelings for me and he snatched this opportunity to confess them to me. I know that I shouldn’t have jumped into another relationship but I was just relieved that I had a shoulder to cry on and had found a partner before my ex had. In my mind, I went, ‘HA! Take that Sam’. Sam was my ex.

So, in the winter of 2011, while I was on a semester break from college, I decided to hop on to the next available flight and to meet Benji in London.

The 13-hour flight from Singapore to London was a nightmare, there was a screaming toddler sitting/standing next to me and the flight attendant was having a severe case of PMS. At one point, she spilled a glass of water on my shirt and conveniently blamed it on air turbulence. I let it go at that time and was just excited about the prospect of meeting Benji.

Once I was in London, I realized that I had lost my wallet. Basically everything that could go wrong did go wrong and I should have understood the signs and stopped myself from meeting him. But as fate would have it, I didn’t and it turned out that I was in for more shockers that day and the flight was just the icing on the cake.

A girl in Benji’s flat who also happened to be his girlfriend, whom he had been dating for several years, greeted me. It is not exactly the kind of thing you hide from a girl you claim to love. The two had thought that it would be funny to play a little practical joke on me and to get even with me for breaking up with Benji.

I was hurt, to say the least, I had never, in my wildest dreams, expected it from him. I had a broken heart, a stolen wallet and a battery less phone that did not have any credit. I chided myself for trusting someone so easily, checked into the nearest hotel and told myself, ‘C’est la vie’.