When worlds collide, the best of us won’t be here with the rest of us. They’ll drop before the paint has dried, when worlds collide, when worlds collide. – Todd Rundgren
Georgina finished applying her makeup and carefully slid the cat ear headband up to the base of her tight bun. She gave herself a final glance in the bathroom mirror and smiled. “I wonder if she’ll recognize me,” she thought to herself, drifting back in her memory to that magical day in 2015 when Ariana had hugged her and told her she loved her. Mum was still cleaning up after dinner and Georgina began to worry that they would get stuck in traffic on the drive from Corley to Manchester. She didn’t want to miss a single moment. Trusting that Mum knew best, she imitated the silly Cat Valentine laugh – HA HA HA HA – perhaps a bit too loudly and covered her mouth in embarrassment. Closing the lid of her makeup chest, she hopped excitedly downstairs to the kitchen.
Steve picked up the butt of a fag and lit it, greedily inhaling the remainder of the damp Mayfair. He watched the line of women and their adolescent daughters queueing at the entrance of the arena and wondered if it might be best to leave this possible panhandling windfall for a different night, a different crowd. Women with their children always gave him a wide berth; he understood why and didn’t fault them for it. Tonight, he would just drink in their smiles, their infectious joy. He sat down on the pavement wishing he could wave at the lovely girls without scaring them silly.
Salman was ready. He rose from his prayer mat and walked to the bathroom. Decked out in what his new friends in Libya would call “the rags of the heathens”, he gave himself a final look in the mirror, satisfied that he would blend in with the infidels already gathering at the arena. Removing the heavily laden black vest from a suitcase beneath the vanity, he held it aloft and chanted “Subhana rabbiyal adheem” several times before placing it securely back in the case. With a quick exhale of determination, he grabbed the suitcase and walked out into the night.
No one knows what world anyone inhabits until those worlds converge or fatefully collide. We pass each other by in ignorance and misunderstanding, day after day, until something finally, irrevocably gives. Let’s cultivate the energy of love. It’s our only hope.