Dear Atarah, today is the big day, I'm ready to return.
Yeah, after spending three weeks in the forest bordering the city while enjoying cheerful visits from Naomi and Noah, I've finally decided to head back home. But obviously, I'm not just going to go back and accept the tribe ways after all that I've been through, I'm going to go back and make amends!
I met up with Naomi and Noah at the edge of the park at dawn for us to start our hike into the forest. They gladly accepted to accompany me -again, out of curiosity- which made me feel relieved, I really appreciated their company!
When I met them, Naomi was wearing dark green trekking pants and an orange hoodie, her hair was held back behind a black crochet bonnet; she looked vivid and full of energy. Noah was also in trekking pants and a blue hoodie, carrying a huge camping bag on his broad shoulders, totally ready for the adventure of his life. I looked at them, well-prepared and hot to trot then I glanced at Cliff running around, impatient to go on a walk. I was bubbling up with excitement and a smile spread on my face, I turned my back to the city and headed into the forest.
Around an hour into the walk, we were chit-chatting about my tribe while ascending a few steep rocks, "Eva is the best, I mean, I will never forget the time we were chased by a giant fish in the lake, I was freaking out and I don't know what she was saying but she was definitely trying to tell me something behind all the mad gestures she made with her hands!" I laughed heartily and Naomi giggled too, I miss my dad and Eva, I'm glad we're going back.
After a few hours, we were finally there, I was nervous and Naomi could see it on my face. She reached out and squeezed me tightly, I took a deep breath and stepped into the tribe's territory.
I saw a bunch of the tribe members working in the fields but thankfully, they didn't spot me. I had completely forgotten about Naomi and Noah when Noah approached me to ask whether we were in the right place. I nodded and moved in the direction of my hut followed by two modern people and a dog. I entered my hut, numerous memories of fun times flashed past my eyes then brought me back to reality, my wandering thoughts came to an end when someone entered the room I thought that it was just Naomi investigating the place and when I turned back I was flabbergasted, it was my father.
We shared a few moments of shock, astonishment, and joy. My dad looked fit as usual yet his tired eyes only now -when he saw me- seemed to reflect the lustrous eyes I had always known. I reached out and gave him a bone-breaking hug, then started to tell him about my adventures and how I met Naomi and Noah. My dad was truly grateful to them and they appeared to be fascinated by the hut. Nevertheless, I wasn't satisfied yet, I had to convince my whole tribe that we had to make changes to our ways, and the best way to get them all listening was to go straight to the source. I made my way to my uncle's hut with my father, Naomi, Noah, and Cliff following me a few tribe members noticed the bizarre group and started to mumble rapidly. I ignored them all and had my eyes fixed on my goal.
As I entered the Chief's hut, fear crept up my spine, I had never been in there... I knocked. The Chief opened the door, he was big, tall, strong as usual; his hands and face were smeared in our bright traditional colors. His jaw slightly dropped as he saw me, then his eyes moved on to Noah and Naomi: two modern people! He looked outraged yet relieved, he glanced at me again and I walked into his hut, without verbal permission. This didn't seem to bother him. He acted like Naomi and Noah were not there- this was already a positive point- and stared at me.
I started to tell him how I had settled in another part of the forest bordering the city ( I expected him to lose his temper but he just listened) I went on about Naomi, Noah, and Cliff; about how much I've learned and how much I've discovered. I also added that the defence classes really paid off, as I had to look for creative means to survive. This seemed to lighten the atmosphere a bit. I stopped and My uncle seemed lost in my words. He finally spoke softly, he told me that I reminded him a lot of his sister, my mother I was listening attentively eager to catch every detail. The Chief told me that my mom was also very determined and never adored the tribe ways, she was brimming with life and motivation. One day, she had gone missing, together my dad and himself searched heaven and earth for her but in vain. My uncle went on, he told me that he was now ready to listen to all the suggestions that I have and put them into practice. He had been reflecting on his attitude and concluded that we should give everyone a chance to express themselves.
A strong gust of hope hit me and I smiled from ear to ear, it was finally happening, I couldn't believe it!
I glanced at Naomi and Noah who gave the thumbs-up, at the Chief who had tears in his eyes, and at my dad who just beamed.
see you soon!