Monday, 9 August 2010

The two way glass

A drive. A really long one.
That was what I was embarking on one night.
I drove on and on till I lost track of where I was. I didn't know where I was headed to, and frankly, I didn't care either.
This was my liberation. At least that was what I would have liked it to be.
The sky was dark. A beautiful pitch black. It made the stars seem like tiny solitaires, gleaming away in serene silence. The moon was peeking out from behind mournful clouds. I had music on, as always. 
Suddenly, everything seemed to disappear in front of my eyes. Before I could realize, the stars and the moon and the clouds- they were all gone. There were no more buildings on the sides. No more people walking the streets. An empty dimly lit stretch greeted me. 
I continued driving, though. I didn't want to stop. The fear of the unknown held no place in thought. 
I seemed to be in a tunnel that seemed to last forever. The car glided along noiselessly. I looked at my sides. There was glass covering the entire tunnel. I saw my reflection looking back at me.
Then that vanished too.
I saw my parents. My mother cooing to me, a bundle in her arms. I noticed the tears glistening in her eyes. 
I saw my father teaching me to walk, his large hand holding on to my tiny fingers gently.
I saw my grandmother telling me stories at night, brushing away strands of hair from my face.
I saw my little brother in the cradle and I saw me kissing him on his forehead.
I saw my first teacher at school handing me out candy for something I had written correctly on the chalkboard.
I saw my first friend waving me goodbye as I left town.
I saw the first glimpse of pain on my face as I lay hurt on the sports field.
I saw the first scar from a sister-brother fight.
I saw the cards that my friends gave for my 11th birthday when I had to leave town again.
I closed my eyes. I didn't think I wanted to see what was going to come after that. But the images wouldn't stop.

I saw my best friend the day we first met.
I saw all the posters I made for the middle school display board.
I saw the report cards handed out for my academic excellence.
I saw the Himalayas again and I saw my mother beckoning to me. She wanted to show me those lovely flowers that bloomed only in the hills.
I saw myself looking at the empty valleys below and wondering what life there would be like.
I saw my mother being taken away on her final journey.
I saw my best friend lose herself to drugs.
I saw all the wonderful people who came to be an important part of my life.
I saw our college, and its lawns and all the coffee and the talks.
I saw the loss of more friends.
I saw the first sign of bonding in my brother's eyes when I left home.
I saw myself..alone.

I stopped the car. 

Ahead of me , the glass on the sides was still showing images. 

I turned the car around and drove away. From everything that was waiting for me.

I was back in my mother's arms, a helpless thing bundled up in blankets.

That's where I wanted to be.