I was on my evening walk of awareness when I let the sound of Jenna and Nadia’s laughter carry me away. I watched the two of them rolling around on the grass, wrapped up in a warm embrace. Who was to tell if they were 6 or 26? Dolce fer niente – there is amazing beauty in the feeling of having nothing to do, nowhere to go and no pressing matter to attend to. It is for this precise reason that I had taken time off from my ‘regular life’ to partake in the joy of commune living. Having recently resigned from a high-strung job, I was in search of ‘utopian’ concepts, like freedom and inner peace, and I had a feeling I was going to let this place carry me away.

Here’s the thing about living in a commune: love is available freely, and in abundance. In a habitat where the focus is on feeling rather than thinking, it takes on a form that’s both fluid and all-encompassing. Conversations are heartwarming, and contact is a natural extension of the interaction. On the flip side — and really, I’m not sure I should even call this the flip side — love adheres to no set rules, and refuses to co-exist with emotions such as hostility, jealousy, rivalry or ambition.

Despite having grown up within the confines of a ‘functional’ society, and having experienced my fair share of monogamous relationships, I’ve always felt like an onlooker with rose-tinted vision. Here, I felt like I was stripped down to the basics. The joy of being completely in touch with every breath and rhythm of my body was overwhelming at first, and then it became something I wanted to celebrate. I know that this sounds like something out of ‘Hippiedom for Dummies’, but it’s absolutely true.

Thus, when I met Krishna for the first time, I took his loving embrace as nothing more than an effort to integrate me with the clan. The girl outside the commune would have resisted this sort of contact, as excessive and unnecessary, especially coming from a man possibly thrice her age, and someone in a position of authority. The girl inside, though, revelled in the fact that passages to her heart were finally wide open to let in some of that free-flowing love and anybody who wished to enter therewith. So I let myself become one with it, as I did with the rest of my surroundings, but not without noticing his impish smile and the grandeur of his sultry salt and pepper strands.

I’m not entirely sure when the emotions turned primal, but I won’t say I was surprised. This time around, he kissed me ever so slightly on my cheeks and let both the gaze and the embrace linger longer than they were supposed to. My inhibitions dropped to ground level instantly. That’s when the game of seduction really started — slow, but steady, and with an intensity that could have only come with years and years of practice. When our lips met for the first time under the moonlight, I knew no force in the world could have extinguished the fire our bodies ignited — again, never mind the Mills & Boon imagery.

It was in this moment of catharsis that the magic of meditation dawned upon me. We were so in the moment that everything else faded into oblivion — the years that separated us, his role as one of the authorities, the women who had been here before me, or the woman who was bound to him by law — all these were realisations that, in the outside world, had the potential to shred me to pieces. At the same time, neither of us lingered in the possibility of a shared future — not that it couldn’t exist, but the burden of expectation was too much. What did remain constant was the vulnerability in his eyes, something that I had seen in all the lovers before him. It’s hard to tell whether he made a concerted effort to woo me, or if we acted out of an electrifying connect, but I am now a firm believer in the heat of the moment. It has left me with a taste so intoxicating that I can’t wait to get my hands on the elixir of free love — and with that, a pair of wings.