From their first meeting on the bus trip, feelings between Zoe and Kuziva grew. They spend many nights on the phone getting to know each other and falling in love deeper and deeper. Kuziva was Zoe’s primary reason to wake up. Each morning presented itself as to a fairy tale waiting to unfold. A story she wanted to take part in. Kuziva was left with overcoming his fear of rejection and asking his new love to be his girlfriend.
“You’ve made me a happy girl today,” Zoe said, when Kuziva eventually told her he loved her, and asked if she’d be his girlfriend. She had been waiting for him to ask this for a long time, so she did not even hesitate to say anything but yes. Before making their relationship official, they had already made a bucket list of things they wanted to do and places they wanted to visit. Too long a list perhaps, for two souls who do not even own a driver’s license?
The two started going on dates, trying to break the physical distance that was somehow still intact and tangible between them. Each time before they met, Kuziva would think what their first kiss should be like. And at the end of each day, he returned home feeling disappointed at not having found courage or the right moment.
“The best day ever,” Zoe’s WhatsApp statuses read. She posted the beautiful new couple enjoying the first phase of their relationship. Kuziva would reiterate the same on his statuses with the same amount of joy. Deep down his mind though, he still wondered how to break down the physical barrier between them.
The two met one night for Christmas carols, went for ice cream the next day, and enjoyed sunsets lying on the grass of the botanical gardens. Not even an ant could come between the two. They were falling off the cliff with each other, and they didn’t care what would happen, all they knew was that they had each other, and that they need each other to survive in their paradise.
On one rainy day in January, Kuziva gathered all his confidence and reached for Zoe’s lips. The world came to a stop. The world outside disappeared, and the only things existing were Zoe and him, and the softness of their engagement. This was going to be the reference kiss. A memory that was going to bring them back together each time a dark cloud was to hover between them. The kiss was so pure and reassuring, they were in the right place and at the right moment. One experiencing that feeling would have wished to stay in the trance for the rest of the day but as always, all good things come to an end.
Kuziva worked hard to get his driver’s license and Zoe followed suit. Two inexperienced drivers who love each other, craving for careless adventures, began their escapades when Zoe received her first car as a gift from her parents. They taught each other how to drive – the blind leading the blind. They drove into game parks and admired lions, canoed near dams where people marveled at how sweet a couple they were, and they tried out different kinds of food at every restaurant they could find. Zoe bought Kuziva a watch that had the sentence “you will always be my love” engraved in it. These words were to stand for the rest of their entire existence. The two had their first road traffic accident, but they supported each other through it. Nobody got hurt but they had to deal with the third party. As they say, through thick and thin.
The first two years of the relationship passed by so quickly. They were in love with each other in a selfless way, and were ready to sacrifice everything to be with each other. Zoe and Kuziva would spend every moment they could together without even noticing the hands of the clock moving. As people doing the same program in school, they studied together and celebrated their successes whenever their marks came back. They even embarked on their first business venture, organizing a day trip for other students, which despite being unprofitable still cemented the foundation of their partnership.
Very soon, the Christmas holidays came and fun was going to end. Kuziva had to return back to his hometown. Sadly, the two celebrated their anniversary and shortly parted ways for the holidays. Kuziva felt like a part of him had been removed when he left. Could their love survive the distance? Counting down the days until he could meet his lover again was going to be difficult, he thought as he sat in the bus back home and looked at the landscape passing by. For the first time, he hated going back.
23 February, 2023