“Honey, can we stop here for a while? I need to catch my breath. My 60 year old body is not built for this much walking,” said the man as he gulped a whole flask of water.
“Oh, please. You have always been like this. Last year I had to walk through Disneyland all by myself while you enjoyed room service at the hotel room. Tell me, who does that to their wife?”
“Can we not start with that again? You brought me to a desert this time! We could have been vacationing in cruise ships.”
“It's not just any desert!” sighed the woman, truly exasperated with her husband. After 35 years of marriage she was done trying to force her husband to understand the beauty of nature. She was used to the bickering by now. It was his company she desired.
“Yes, yes, it's the Atacama Desert! But, did we really have to come this far to stare at the sky?”
“Oh, for God's sake, it's star gazing! How can you not be enchanted by the idea of gazing into the heavens? Did you know that the sky here is filled with way more constellations than any other place on Earth? It's because the Southern Hemisphere faces directly into the Milky Way's galactic centre giving a view of billions of stars.” The woman looked up to the sky and pointed, “See, the sky here is also so much clearer. Soon it will all be filled with stars.”
“Then why can't we just set our telescopes at this place? Isn't the sky same everywhere?”
“But, we need to walk a bit further to get a good view of the Omega Centauri. Honestly, I should have married a travel lover like myself. Stop arguing now and start walking. The spot is just ahead.”
As night was starting to fall, she quickly started walking towards the star gazing spot. Slowly, the sky seemed to get filled with a million glimmering fairy lights.
“This spot will do,” said the woman, checking her map once again to make sure they were at the correct spot. But, then again any place in Chile would give you unforgettable views of the heavens; so, there really weren't any “wrong” spots to begin with. They quickly set up their stuff consisting of a little picnic blanket, some snacks, two lounging chairs, and a telescope.
It was their marriage anniversary.
“35 years, eh?” observed the man. He seemed to be enjoying the stars now that he was sitting down and had some food in his hands. “So, which one is your Omega Centauri?”
“It's the bright cluster of stars over there. It's one of the brightest so you won't miss it.”
“I was wrong about this. This isn't too bad.”
“You're also not too bad. Happy 35 years, sweetie.”
Tasnim Odrika is having an existential crisis at the moment and doesn't really know who she is anymore. Send her compliments at email@example.com