The room

It is a quarter to one in the early afternoon. He has been on his feet and out in the cold all day long. It has been raining. The show only starts at 1 P.M. But he is already in the auditorium. He likes it there. It feels like home. For the first time in a very long time, he has found a place where he belongs. It is the first screening of the day, so usually there aren’t as many people in the room as later in the day, but since it is raining, he got the entire place to himself. That feels good. The room is not heated, but it is dry and there is no wind either, so our man feels better in an instant. The seats are old, uncomfortable, covered in red velvet that by now is faded and dusty. But it doesn’t matter. He sits down. Finally, some rest. Ten more minutes to go. The screen is blank, and the room is poorly lit. He

sits alone in the room, in the 5th row from the back, smack down in the middle, looking straight at the centre of the screen. Some music is being played through the speaker boxes. Oldies. Some he recognizes, some he doesn’t. But they are pleasant non-the less. And he sits there in stillness, enjoying the moment. As if the movie he bought a ticket for doesn’t even matters any longer. Just let him have this piece of peace. It is perfect. 5 more minutes. Somebody walks in, another spectator. Alas, the room is no longer his alone. But it is still ok. The newcomer sits down at a distance, and minds his own business. There will be no trouble there. What movie is on again? Oh, yes, that thriller he read about in a magazine. Supposed to be good. What about after the show? He probably will be hungry so that needs to be taken care of, after which he still needs to kill at least 2 more hours before he can return to his room. That will be tricky. But it doesn’t matter right now. The room just went dark and the projector started making noise. The movie starts. And everything else ceases to exists for 2 hours.

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