It is one of those days when you had an avalanche of emotions and feel drained even before the workday ends. From happiness to pride, satisfaction, love, freedom, revenge, anger, disgust, pain, insult, you’ve experienced a range of emotions that half the human population hasn’t even begun to feel. At 6 PM, you grab your handbag and leave for the day. You find that one colleague you don’t mind spending time with at the end of such a day and go for coffee to a comforting café. Sipping (a rather strong) coffee, through some nice conversations and comfortable silences, you see a strange calm dawning on you when it starts drizzling outside and you decide to walk home.
You zip up your overcoat and start walking in the drizzle (secretly thanking that colleague of yours who didn’t insist on being chivalrous and drop you home). It is still drizzling. You plug your earphones and switch on a playlist of melancholy love songs on shuffle (to be surprised) and start walking – a smile intact on your lips.
You walk a few steps and the auto rickshaws start slowing down near you (the helpful Bangalorean gentlemen that they are). You give them a condescending smile and look away with a heightened sense of self. The mighty rain washes Indiranagar down and you see people slowly move to the sides of the road. The world opens up for you and you feel like the brave one surviving the vengeful rain. When the first drop of rain reaches your lips and you slowly swallow that drop, the sense of bravery vanishes and all you feel is noble love for the rain that has now enveloped you – in your entirety, just the way you are, the shape, the size and the personality. The rain envelopes the car that just passed by, the buffalo that refuses to move, the umbrella that the school girl is hiding under and every person else – the same way it embraces you. You can’t resist being jealous – jealous of all the other people it is raining on – even worse when they don’t even love it back like you do. You smile knowing yourself all too well.
You’ve walked quite a distance and you want to know what time it is but the smartphone you trust for everything is not rainproof. You look up the night sky and continue walking. The stupid shuffle on your android phone plays Adhiradi Kaaran after Anal mela paniththuli – you can’t resist singing ‘jakkal jackal dammaal dummeel’ and admiring the genius that is vaali!
While passing through that one-way street that has colourful shops lining up either side, there is a power cut. That sense of divine reassurance that (you are the only one walking on the road while everyone else is waiting for the rain to stop) you will not get groped in the dark. That sense of fear that you might fall into a ditch and therefore move to the middle of the road. That joy of walking in the middle of the road in Bangalore and not get yelled at.
You don’t feel thirsty because you know you’ve been drinking rainwater. But you are finding it increasingly difficult to walk. You look down to see dripping wet pants and you thank rain gods that it isn’t Friday else you’ll be in jeans and it would have been heavier.
You wait to cross the road and a gentleman in a black VW Polo stops and waves for you to go. You give him a thumbs-up and thank him. You climb on to the footpath (you finally find after several minutes of walking) and a van splashes muddy water on you. You smile back at him thinking ‘this too shall get rain-washed’. Nothing really seems like a problem anymore. Not the pair of earphones that are also drenching in the rain, not the handbag that has a kindle that is getting wet, not the cold and a fever you may catch tomorrow, not all the worldly problems that bothered you during the day.
You know you will write this post and publish it. You think about calling it ‘a walk to remember’ and then think about how inappropriate it would be in an otherwise film-review blog. You decide to call it ‘mazhai kaadhali’ and you take mental note of giving title-credit to @codenameashtray.
You get home and open the door. The power is still *cut*. You light a small candle lying on the teapoy and inhale the smell of home. Nothing seems like a problem anymore. This too shall be washed.