Wake up. Clean up. Pack a few things. Leave.

Preparation for a journey of any sort should be this simple. And luckily it is for me.

Find a bus. Reach the station. Catch a train.

And here I go, again, returning home, expecting my mother at the door, who already has an entire menu of my favourite dishes listed in her mind for my weekend’s stay. And my father, whom I barely meet twice a day, has a list of chores for me to be done and life lessons to be taught.

But I am not writing this to share my personal life, this one’s for people we see, people we meet during our course of travelling.

If you have ever been not so self-involved and have a glimpse around, you are not the only one daydreaming, thinking about the girl who smiled back to you the other day, worried about your future or maybe thinking about having something against all the insurmountable odds. If you look around for once, you will find that you are not alone but surrounded by hundreds of figures, young and old, rich and poor, confused and planned, bored and amazed. And in each of these you will find a different soul, each having a different story to tell. Call me curious or nosey, but I do want to know these stories, each and every one of them.

Everytime I look around I look a new face, a face that was not there as I remembered five minutes ago, a new voice which has a different story to tell. What I do is, I look at their appearance, study their expressions try to sense their vibes. And then maybe guess what their voices could narrate. Yes, it does sound creepy I agree, but it gives my imagination some work and sometimes inspiration to write.

There was a young couple sitting across me once. Middle class I guess, lady wearing thick spectacles high up her nose, veil over her head, denim coloured shirt and jeans, cradling her two year old girl. Her face, the women’s, lined with faded freckles, thick lips murmuring something to her husband at intervals to which he had only yes or no to answer. Her narrow eyebrows were curved showing that she was thinking over something as she gazed out of the window. Thinking about her future I guessed, hers and her little infant. Her husband, a medium heighted healthy man, surely loved both the females beside him which I guessed by the way he looked at them, one’s head on his lap and the other’s on his shoulder and his eyes shining every time he looked at any of his two companions. Wearing a faded blue shirt and jeans, there was a sign of satisfaction on his face unlike his better-half. He seemed content with his small family, maybe a day job and a rented home in not so posh area of the city. But he seemed happy. The little one looked at me; I winked like I do when any infant stares at me through their little innocent eyes. She looked back to her mother over her shoulder, back to me as I withdrew my attention from her to the upcoming platform.

Train stops. A few rush out. More rush in. New faces. New story.

Among all these, there was this one particular figure. I see him in every journey I make. We board the same train and get off at the same platform every single time. Whom I have known for years, but is a complete stranger too many a times. Who’s every good and vice is known to me but he is quite unpredictable at times. He is me. I am him.

I wonder if I see myself someday, gazing out of a window or simply nodding, what story I would narrate to myself.

Would I be able to look through myself as I think I do through many?

I may see a skinny boy with messed up hair, dark toned and loose t-shirt and skinny jeans. A boy who prefers solitude as he stares out of the windows to empty fields and overcrowded cites for hours straight with his earphones plugged in murmuring every single lyric, lost in his own imagination. A boy who has his head sunk in a worn out novel if he is not lost in his thoughts. A boy who has not eaten or drank a single drop for hours now, nor did he speak word except two brief conversations on call, one to his mother and one to his father.

Would I be able to see that the boy’s heart and mind are as shaky as the train he is travelling in?

Would I be able to narrate the fights he has had with himself?

May be yes. May be no.

But I hope whenever I narrate my story to myself, it has a happy ending.

By the time I find my happy ending, I will keep traveling in search of new stories to live countless lives in them.

 

Originally shared on my blog:https://unseendreamsblog.wordpress.com/

Published by Jaydeep Bansal