Sameera and the Forbidden Fruit

A sequel to/ Sameera/the Struggle of a Single Woman

Almost two years passed since that incident, Sameera was now sure that Alberto is the person she wanted to commit to despite their differences. And as time passed, they grew madly in love with each other. But their relationship was not always milk and honey, and she did not rest one day ever since she got back from Beirut.
It all started when a fierce fight broke between Alberto and his girl right after she (the girlfriend) got back from her vacation. Actually their fight had started even before her leave, when she told him that “friends” were paying her travel expenses. Who were those friends? And why would they pay her, unless there were other things going on behind his back? Not only that, but while she was away, he received her bank statement in the mail. And although he’s not the type that would open her personal mail, but this time the situation was different. He had doubts about her, and he had to be sure. And although the statement did not indicate that she had much, actually only enough to keep the bank account active, but the amount that she used to send monthly to support her family stayed the same, even during the time when she was jobless. He also noticed that the same amount was usually entered few days before the transaction took place. And when he told her that he did not care anymore and he was with another woman, she got furious, and broke almost everything in the apartment, including his mobile, which she smashed to pieces, as he claimed. He also mentioned that she insisted to accompany him to Italy. After all, she was not a stranger to his family, and he didn’t mind paying her expenses. But she did not stay long in Italy; she left after two days and joined some friends in Spain, as she claimed.
It was strange though, that even after she moved out, Alberto’s ex never stopped calling, sometimes at awkward hours while they were intimate together. At times even for silly things, like “I’m feeling down, I need some booze”, and he’d promise to get her some soon.
Sameera knew that this girl was using Alberto, as did all his friends, but did Alberto know it? And so the first clash broke between them. In her opinion Alberto had to end that peculiar relationship right then and there. The girl moved to his colleague’s apartment, where she shared it with two other males and did not have to worry about the rent. She also started to work in one of the saloons, and therefore she was financially secure. Yet, Alberto disagreed and continued his financial and moral support despite Sameera’s pleas, claiming that he sympathized with her because “the girl is stupid and she does not know what she’s getting herself into” as he put it, he also added “She can’t even handle her finances since by the middle of each month she’d always be penniless”. Time and again, the same episode repeated. But as time passed, Alberto started slowly ignoring many of his ex’s phone calls and only occasionally answering some. It also seems that the ex herself got occupied, because her phone calls started decreasing to only occasional calls to say hello. But until then, the ex had always been a source of disturbance between them, sometimes to the point that they won’t talk to each other for a whole day after a nasty, out of place phone call from her. But one day period was the max that they could stay sore at each other, Alberto always called and apologized, even if it wasn’t his fault, he just couldn’t go to sleep knowing that Sameera was upset.
But that was not the only problem Sameera was facing with Alberto, her biggest problem was what I may call, culture clash. As a Kuwaiti woman in such a small society, she had to keep her relationship with Albert behind closed doors, and away from curious eyes, at least until she was sure that she is ready for marriage. And except for very few people who knew about them, the relationship stayed a secret, and this bothered Alberto immensely, especially after proposing to her that summer in Dubai.
It was one late June evening in Buddha bar, and their last night together after spending a week in Dubai. They both agreed that they needed this trip to test each other more closely. They weren’t actually testing their love, but rather, how could they get along as a couple, which was impossible to know in their hide-away refuge, few hours a day. But Sameera never expected that he’s going to propose, nor was she ready for it.
Alberto reserved a table for two by the high glass windows that night, and he ordered the chairs to be decorated and covered completely with fresh violets; her favorite flower. He also ordered a bouquet of red roses to be placed on the table. He wanted this night to be special; he wanted to surprise his lover. But as soon as Sameera saw the table her heart sank, she knew that Alberto was on to something, and that did not comfort her. And her cold attitude did not escape Alberto’s attention. Sameera was not like any other girl he had before, first she refused to let him pay for their traveling expenses and she insisted to share, and now the thoghts in her mind kept racing, not knowing what to say. She was well aware that love and relationships is something, but marriage and commitment is something else, especially that they came from different ethnic backgrounds and cultures. There were more sacrifices in such marriages from both sides, and much more calculations that had to be done before taking that step. The night started a disaster, but ended with wild sex till the wee hours of the morning.
Alberto did understand her concern for taking this step so soon, but what he could not understand is why keep their relationship a secret. In his mind, they were both ordinary mature people having ordinary dates that they shouldn’t be ashamed of. He even told his mom about her when he was in Italy and promised that someday soon they’ll meet.
The situation was not the same for Sameera, and she struggled to make Alberto understand that, but her mission was not always easy. Alberto was thinking logic, and she was thinking culture, and there is a big difference between the two. And since that night, Alberto kept reminding her how he’d sacrifice for her sake by converting to her religion, while she wouldn’t even tell her family that she is involved in a decent relationship with a man that might end up in marriage. To him, the relationship came first before any commitment. And although she did agree with him completely on that, but how could she make him realize that such a thought is considered revolutionary, if not a taboo where she lives? She even assured him that she believed that they needed to live with each other for a while before commitment, but how could she do that in a conservative country like hers, where she herself did not want to appear in public without being sure that this relationship is going to work? Another point was that if she was ever to make that commitment, she had to expect that someday she’d have to go live with him in Italy, and discard her life in her country, including her high position at the company. In other words, she’d be dependant on him financially. She had never done that before, and she was not ready to do that now, not before getting to know Alberto better, this was a life commitment, and not just a game to play.

To be continued