I saw her wearing a beautiful and very intricate gold anklet. It was a remarkable sight. Was it on her left or right ankle? I don’t remember that particular detail, but what I do remember is a strange, blue feeling that had originated in my head precisely at the moment my eyes had acknowledged its presence. One of my friends used to say that it was wrong to look at people’s feet, and that a person who held a grudge against someone would look at that someone’s feet. I must have so much hate to give because I tend to look at feet a lot. In fact, one of the first things I notice about someone is their feet. Maybe it’s because I look down a lot or maybe, I do hold grudges! Anyway, the ankle-girl had messed with my head quite a bit and for a few nights afterwards, both my dreams and nightmares had featured things that I could never wear!
I skipped combing my hair for a day and then it became a habit. I realised that I could save at least five minutes from my morning ritual that way. The time I had saved helped me to not leave for work on an empty stomach. I got myself ugly hats to hide my unruly hair and big, dull scarves to wrap around my head, making them disappear altogether. When someone would complement my hat or scarf with suppressed grins and twitchy eyebrows, I would feel a twinge of embarrassment, but that was all. Soon people got bored and stopped hurling praises and it had gotten easier to carry on with that “look”. Sometime afterwards, I found out that if I washed my face properly before going to bed at night, I could save more minutes from my morning ritual. This idea, however, had backfired, because it had added five more minutes to my bedtime ritual and that had meant less reading time. I simply couldn’t keep up with that. Deep down I knew there was a better way to do things. I could wake up a few minutes earlier to be able to style my hair and wash my face with some fancy liquids, but deeper down, I didn’t want to do any of that! I was choosing comfort over beauty. Or something like that.
One not-so-fine morning, I got into a heated argument with my roommate. We had never fought before and I was running out of mean stuff to say pretty fast. She, however, showed no signs of weakness and then out of the blue, she said something that had helped replenish my stock of nastiness as well.
“I can look right into your little, eyeliner-less eyes and tell you that I am moving out!”
That had hit home, collided with the ceiling and broke free! Why would my eyes feature in our petty feud? How dare she insult my harmless, all-natural eyes! I doffed my scarf, folded it into a ball and threw it right in her face. She didn’t move out by the way, but my temple often throbs at the point where her sneaker had hit me that day…
Coming back to that anklet-girl who had stirred up a storm inside me; it took me quite some time to figure out why the whole thing had bothered me so much. I was jealous! Yeah, it was so simple. I was jealous that someone could wake up that early in the morning to dress nice, fix her hair and don an anklet (she must be skipping breakfast)! I could not make peace with the fact that someone could be happy with being so uncomfortable. I knew if I wore an anklet, I’d actually start having trouble walking. It might sound totally bizarre to some that something as delicate as that anklet can weigh me down, but it sounds very normal to me, and I bet it does to a lot of other women as well (okay, not a lot, just a few).
There are people out there who think that women who do not wear make-up or dress up pretty are trying to make some sort of statement. That might be true for some. Not for all of us, though. Some of us are just downright lazy!