It’s baffling sometimes how some discoveries can change your previous assumption which makes you see the world differently. Just when I felt so sure about everything, doubts started to appear like dark shadows chasing away all my certainty, which clouded my judgments. Never once was I uncertain, for as long as I can remember I have always been comfortable with the judgments I made – it made me feel blessed of being an inhabitant of East Egg.
It has always been known to that there will come a time where I will inherit something from someone, whether it was wealth or a house, I am not sure. There was a time when I thought inheriting something and being given something were same to me, but they now lie at the on the opposite side of the receiving spectrum. Inheritance suggests that something being given rightfully in the eyes of the benefactor. Receiving something is an act of empathy or out utter kindness of what is bequeathed. Until now I always thought I have been given everything – Didn’t how wrong I was.
It was only mid – June, where the whole land was bathed in the summer sunshine. The glistened with a promise of something, deep, blue and cooling, boats set atop rocking happily due to the ripples set in the water like children in cribs. The bay met the sandy shore in soft waves as if lying down to sleep before slipping back gracefully in the water. The radiant, sun hung low delicate in the sky, as the wind effortless danced passed the blinding rays. The beautiful East Egg always felt like home giving the warmth and welcoming feeling – we seldom talk about the other Egg.
West Egg as viewed from my parent’s balcony looked like any other old town, but until further observation it clearly showed its flaws. The houses across the bay were simply unfashioned, and blatant, with most of them as stout, mid-height and dowdy with dull paint walls and yellow lawns. Unfortunately, that’s what it was.
I reckoned that the Egg across the bay was inferior and that I have been fortunate enough to just pity the inhabitants – not live along with them. The opinion is something that I have inherited. This however pleased my parents that we were all on the same, dull page.
It was just last month that my parents informed me of the death of my Uncle, Nick Carraway, man who was 50 year old died due to heart attack.
“We must attend the funeral Tom”, my mother said with indistinct melancholy, “oh, we should leave at once!” The funeral was held in the West Egg at Mr. Carraway’s house. This appeared just like how I anticipated it to be.
His home was just like any other West Egg’s house. The house was modest and sat lazily on the shore of the bay with old, faded chipped blue, which looked like it would peel off any moment with corroded windowpanes in frail ivy. The walls were stiff and had cracks with unpainted shutters that was covered heavily from the rusted and loose hinges. The funeral took place at sunny summer morning, which clashed against the event’s black clothing and mournful environment. Mother was tearing softly, and father seemed utterly unhappy about being unhappy. A man large owl eye-shaped stepped forward to announce his last testament with his close family. He spoke softly and empathically, but its words never reached my ears, I felt too aloof and distant to pay heed, despite its apparent vicinity.
“And, I Nick Carraway hereby declares to leave all my humble abode and belongings to my niece Pamela Daisy Buchanan.”
The words suddenly hit me like tones of bricks, leaving me breathless all at once. People sometimes talk about these moments which leave them flabbergasted, I never understood them or their feelings until now. An awkward and heavy tension settled in the room which I could probably cut it with a knife.
My mother once noticing that I am bluntly gawking at my late uncle’s attorney coughs to bring me back to from my state of obvious shock. Looking at my father his face was itched with confusion whilst my mother she seemed worried about whatever the reason that might be. The owl-eyed man handed me the will, “For you, my dear” he said sincerely.
There wasn’t much to take anything from gift anyway. I certainly didn’t want the house, and I most certainly didn’t want his money either. His money was too honest to be given away as a gift, so that just left me behind with an old cardboard box filled with photos, old calendar, a few letter and a book.
The unpublished book was unlike any other book, it had worn out pages with coffee stains, food spills and crisp edges that were due to the cigarette ashes. Having nothing else to take away with me other than the box, I and my father drove away in his royal blue coupe, leaving behind the other gifts which I will not be accepting and the speck that was the West Egg.
Arriving back to my apartment, I started at the strange book that wasn’t titled. I wonder why my uncle would leave behind such ragged book like this to me, and so I read. I discovered that the book didn’t come in my inheritance but more of a beautiful gift that I haven’t yet received. It told a tale, so vivid, so tragic which spoke volumes on the emotions of an unsuccessful love, so insightful, so complete that it felt like I have been drowned into the words making me complete. That same evening my parents joined me for dinner.
“Pammy, darling” mother faked urgency, “set that worn book down, come for dinner.”
“There is no need for you to be reading these nonsense books” father said abruptly, “It will turn you to a pessimist, the kind of rubbish they put in those books” he said while shaking his head and puffing his cigar.
And so I sat down the dinner next to my father, where I gazed over the balcony and could see for the very time the big house just beside my uncles and wondered, how East Egg locked from the other side of the bay.