Life is easy. Love is cheap. And everything is so incredibly beautiful. Let's do drugs. Let's dance with sexy people. Let's make love. And everything is so incredibly beautiful. The city lights at night. The fluorescent drinks. The smell of endless summer. Everything is so incredibly beautiful. We can change the world. We are the future. We will make it happen. And then a comet appears...
A comet appears tells of a young man's quest to unify his conflicting ideals. Torn between the ambition to live a good life and the love for the life he lives, the protagonist struggles with happiness and pleasure, dreams and reality. It's a story about being lost and finding love, an account of growing up and making choices.
The young man was sitting at an outside table of a bar at the Plaza de Armas in Tumbes, northern Peru. He sipped his instant coffee. It was March eleventh, around ten in the morning. Not many people were around so the young man took his time to get lost in thoughts. His name was Robbert Codde. Without unnecessary detail about the colour of the sky (stark blue with an occasional stretched cloud), the smell of the air (dusty with hints of decay) and the climate (sweaty sunny still) that is all what needs to be said about the setting. A common one. Think Third World tourism. Think taking photos nobody will enjoy watch-ing. Think flipping through a guidebook to find another destination, a destination worthy to get going again. No place to stay. From across the square, from the side of the decorated stage, another man approached Robbert. He walked straight to the young man and sat down at the same table. All seemed normal. All seemed like this and only this was the proper way to be. Like it was rehearsed. Robbert returned from his thoughts to the real world.
“So we meet again,” the other said as his greeting.
“Do I know you?” Robbert asked.
“You have always known me. Don’t you remember?”
“You look familiar, like I ought to know you.”
“We haven’t spoken in a while.”
“We probably haven’t, if you say so.”
“When was the last time we met? Let me think,” the other said and so he did, eyes up as if inventing the story, rather than remembering. And so did Robbert. He took the last sip of his coffee and observed his strange guest. The other looked familiar. It is like looking at an old pho-tograph, he thought, one you forgot was ever taken. You know the faces but don’t remember the people connected to them, their stories. They were the same age, the two young men, or somewhere close. And the other too is a foreigner, a stranger, a European. More Mediterranean, though, Robbert considered. Spanish or Italian mixed with a northerner like me. Blue eyes and darker hair, this colour called auburn. His skin more tanned, a sharper nose. He ordered another coffee and so did his guest. Then the other said, “Madrid. I think it was Madrid.”
“Where we last met?”
“Yes, near the fountains, just before Plaza de Colon.”
“I think I now do remember something. But then you have changed.”
“And so have you,” the other said. “I didn’t recognise you, almost. It is good we meet here and not in, say, Oslo, where your looks would not have made you easy to recognise. Your blond hair here is a rarity, as is your pale skin. I was drawn to you like a magnet, you are an easy prey.”
Why does he say Oslo? Robbert thought. The mere name of that city made him want to return to his comfortable thoughts of before.