Friday, September 6, 2013

Because the kid said so

The past few weeks have been a little strange. I've never been very social in real life, but I do have a few friends who coax me into meeting them every now and then. Mostly, I've successfully managed to come up with excuses to not meet them, after which they usually stop prodding me to see them again.

Lately I've been receiving calls from friends who had never called me before. They want to check if I've been doing well. My biggest crush messaged me to tell me that I had been ignoring him! He noticed that I haven't been poking him on FB and I haven't been sending him forwarded messages on Whatsapp. My mother has been too kind even when I reach home past midnight. I should have felt special with all this love being showered on me without a reason. However, that wasn't the case.

I've spent the last couple of months longing to go back home - Dehra Dun. Technically I don't have a home there any more because we sold it before shifting to Delhi, but there's no other place in the world I can call home, not even this house I stay in. I've only been to Dehra Dun twice since 2006 for 2-day trips. When I scroll through the beautiful pictures I see on its Facebook page, I remember every cold morning, every torrential downpour, every morning sun and every star I've counted in the night sky, clearly. I remember looking around to find the mountains fixed in the frame everywhere, running up to the terrace to see where it had snowed on the hills, escaping to Rajpur Road to the best bakeries I've ever seen, basking in the sun whenever it showed up, watching the clouds turn orange to pink to the deepest blue as the sun set completely. That's about everything I do not get to see in Delhi.

While coming back home from work today I was almost confident that I was going to quit work soon. My work hasn't been the most interesting thing in my life of late. I could earn more than the meagre amount they pay me by taking up three interesting freelance assignments, and move to the valley for good. For once it seemed like a great idea. 'That seems feasible, doesn't it?' I asked myself. I didn't realise I had been walking on the wrong side of the road until a car crossed me. This little kid in the back seat was almost leaning out of the car waving at me and smiling happily. He kept waving and saying 'Nooooo' in a never ending sing-song voice.

'But why?' I wanted to ask him. Why should I not go back home? Why would you stop me? I looked ahead and saw that I walking in the wrong direction. I had crossed the main gate already. I shook my head, smiled to myself and walked back home.