December 02, 2006

The Walk

There is certainly a lot of magic in Delhi’s winters. Of course, it is hard to find and hidden away from the hours that we get to normally see, when we honk and snake our way through the working day, lost in our thoughts, arguments and other worries that plague our mundane daily existence.

And when it turns up, like at two in the morning today, while walking back from a late night movie with only your own shadow, an empty soul and the empty road for company, it is indeed sheer magic. Places filled otherwise with noise and people now welcome you with the most silent of appraisals. There is almost a feeling of mutual acknowledgement, but that’s just my imagination speaking.

Regardless, it is like a slow sigh of relief expelled by the day, now an unburdened soul, dark and widespread, breathing quietly into your being, and gradually resuscitating life back into your near-dead self. It can’t speak, but it does talk back. It can’t feel, but it does touch you. It is meant to be asleep, but it certainly is wide awake.

During the day, there is colour everywhere. The mushrooms are back on the shelves of the roadside shops. Hands dig deep into pockets, mufflers tie gentle knots of warmth into every other body you can see. It is a season I dread and look forward to at the same time, for things inevitably go wrong, in the worst possible manner, around this time, every time.

For most parts I am rediscovering silence. I am rediscovering nothingness and discovering its value for the first time. I have a million memories to let go of and thousands of instances to step aside. Strangely, the story has never been about me; but it is and it is not at the same time now. Does that make sense? I guess not.

It was inevitable that the seasons would change again, like how it is inevitable that I must finally make a move. This is not home for me, even when I’ve called this place home for the past seven years. This is not love for me, even when I have, arguably, been in love for the past four years? But, honestly, I have no complaints, no regrets and not even a fleeting sense of loss. I’ve felt and done all that. This time it is for good.

I see glimpses, of myself and feelings that I’d thought I’d long lost, every now and then. Sometimes it feels like childhood all over again. There is a familiarity I yearn for. There is that elusive smile I wonder if I’ll ever see for real. There is the warmth of an unknown embrace that I know by heart and one that is familiar to every inch of my skin. I know exactly, inch-by-inch, what I am looking for.

Sometimes I think I have a lot to say, that I will write once again those thoughts out here. Then I realize that this is a conversation that I am having with myself. I am explaining, putting into shape and form my feelings that I probably never tell anyone, maybe not even myself. After 27 years, I’ve realized that I’ve never listened to myself with even half the care or concern I’ve always given others.

I do not know what value this blog will ever hold. It is a twisted logbook of my life since 2001, played out as elaborate game of metaphorical hide and seek. But for all practical purposes it is an endless repetition of the themes of loneliness, sadness, desperation and longing. I’ve threatened to quit doing this on numerous occasions, for varying reasons, but as the updates dwindle to the odd missive credited to the force of habit, I think I am finally willing to let this too go, but this time without regret, pain or anger.