Wednesday, December 12, 2012

promenade of numbers

There are Six guys, all dressed in black, taking turns to jump from a grassy patch to a slab of concrete about four feet away. I hear claps, as one of the guys makes the jump, the second guy flexes his arms, and spot jumps, prepping for his turn. I'm not sure what the purpose is, maybe it's a new exercise fad? Or perhaps a new Olympic sport? Whatever it is, these guys All have an uncommon interest in it.

There are Five people standing in a circle, a man in dread-locks plays on a small drum, the others hoot and chant. They all look like a rave party in Goa threw up on them. I spot the neon-coloured embroidered "Om" fanny pack from a mile away. I glance over as a crowd begins to form around them. The louder they play, the bigger the crowd. It is some kind of 'drum circle'. The crowd doesn't understand what these people are doing, but in India it doesn't take much to get a crowd.

There are Four middle-aged women all in 'shalwar kameez' and brand new Nike shoes. They squeeze together on a a single bench, all trying to get a word in, gossiping on their routine evening "walk".

There are Three young girls dressed in small shiny clothes, ready for the night of clubbing they have been preparing for. They pose with each other, in every combination possible, and finally ask an innocent passerby to take a picture of them. They all secretly hope they look the best, so it can be their Facebook profile picture.

There are many Two's: couples sitting under trees, on benches, in the bushes, on the rocks. There are crowds of them, each engrossed in their own private moment. Some are in the middle of a lovers quarrel, some are about to kiss, and some have been together for so long, that they stare in opposite directions, but still hold hands.

And then there is the One, Me, walking home from work, slightly hunched from the weight of the world. Bag in one hand and a bright golden inflatable guitar in the other.

Saturday, December 08, 2012

35mm of life

I have just come back from a work trip to the beautiful, magnificent, scenic Cape Town. I am lucky to have gone and I have no complaints. But I discovered a few things in my four days there. They may be silly at first, but I think they all, like most of life's learnings, have a deeper meaning that is yet to reveal itself. 
Firstly, I discovered that the people of this gorgeous land are friendly and very accommodating. The only downside is that they all wear very low pants. I saw more butt cracks in four days there than I have seen anywhere else (not that I keep a track of these things). It worried me at first, but then I got used to it, and it was almost inevitable that I would see one if someone bent or sat in front of me. So much so, it became an anomaly to not see one. As much as I love the scenery in Cape Town, that is one sight I would like never to see again, for a long time. 

Secondly, I discovered that I have an over active imagination that may borderline on paranoia. On the way back to India I was on a flight that seemed like a beginning of those corny airplane disaster movies, where something goes terribly wrong with the flight and people begin to show their true colours. First there was a man who began complaining to the ground staff about something or the other, in the plane disaster movie, he would be the annoying cynic who screams "we're all going to die", or the one who grabs a child from a woman so he can be saved first. Then there was a young cricket team. They would be the ones who help to get the people out, like forming a chain or something. They wouldn't be individual characters, but one mass of people whom in the credits would be called 'cricket team'. Then there was a mother with a crying infant, enough said. There is always a mother with a crying infant in disaster movies. She will be the sacrificial one who says something like ''leave me behind and save my child!". There was an old woman who complained to the flight attendants about the bread, they were more that peeved with her and tried to explain that everyone on the plane was getting the same kind of bread. She would be the one is sucked out of the airplane when the wing rips off. Cause you know, no one likes her from the start of the movie anyway. So then it got me thinking, would I be the protagonist? Would I keep everyone calm and instil confidence in the plane during the time of need. Personally, I think not. 

Which comes to my last discovery. I am quite wimpy. I like to think of myself as having a few leadership qualities, but maybe in a movie, I'd be cast as "Lady 3", and I'd say one line that does not take the film anywhere really. Like maybe I'd scream "listen to him", speaking to the cynic about the heroic protagonist who will save everyone. 

Yes, I'd probably be "Lady 3". And that makes me sad. I should change. I should take control. I should make myself the heroine in life's movie. take some chances, jump some bridges. I could have stayed a few more days in Cape Town. But Lady 3 felt a little scared to be in a new city all by herself. What if she didn't make it back? Lady 3 is a wimp and I want to change her. But that comes with time, as do most things in life.

And I have time, because thankfully Life is not a 2-hour long B-grade movie. 

P.S : I realise now how incredibly irrelevant the first point is. But I am sure there is a deeper meaning hidden there somewhere... I just have to crack it. Pun totally intended.