———– 1 ————
I wake up at 5 o’clock. I get ready for the office. I have my breakfast and my wife hands me the tiffin. I rush for the metro station. As I enter the station, I find the usual crowd with nothing new. I align myself in queue for the ticket. I take my ticket and go for the checking. I catch my metro. I reach my work place.
———— 2 ———–
It’s 5o’clock. I take a sip of my last coffee for the day and I am almost done with my work. I rush to the metro station. As I reach the station, the glance at the display board gives me a satisfaction; I will reach my home on time. As I enter the station, the squeaking sound, running ahead of the train and the yellow light illuminating from the distance on the highest horizon makes me feel giddy. I am ready for the joust to get boarded in the metro. It’s my daily routine, now. I have been travelling in metro for more than a month.
As the train stops, I look at the mob inside the train. The door of the train opens and I get in along with the crowd without applying any force to my legs. I search for a seat but, by that time, people occupy all of them. I go and stand near the door. I will die of this smell. There is a man standing beside me, raising his hand to hold, to maintain the balance, actually, to kill everyone with his stinking sweat.
I take out my phone. I plug in my earphones. There is a new video of ‘bb ki vines’. I start watching it. Few minutes pass, I raise my head to just for few seconds. Then something catches my attention. There, I see a man with his daughter, standing near the door. The man seems to be tired, maybe due to the work, throughout the day. His daughter questions him about the maps. She is wearing a classical dress, carrying a pair of ‘ghungroo’ on her hands. An innocent question becomes an incessant one, making him annoyed. for few seconds, I hold my gaze at her. I realise that his dad, a man that works for his family for the whole day but, at the end, doesn’t have time for his family.
I start observing other people too. I see the adumbration of a living yet, dead faces. Then, I see an old lady, all alone. She is wearing a very decent saree, seems as if coming from some party. She has put makeup on her face, hiding the wrinkles and dark circles under her eyes. She is sitting silently, with her eyes closed, looking dismal with some or the other thoughts going in her mind. Next to her, a man, listening to the instructions-cum-order of her wife, to how to make a delicious biryani. The energy of the gadgets and their flaunting dresses and suits aren’t matching with the energy of the false and tired faces.
A young couple sitting next to an old age couple, century of difference still portraying the common thing between them, ‘love’. At the entrance, stands a group of boys, they seem to discuss about some competitive exam. They are tired of this accession but, they need to stand up with this fast-moving world. In one corner, a middle-aged uncle rolls his glare at everyone like a spying agent.
The scenario of the whole train pierces the very soul of mine, deeply. As the metro covers its distance, my mind goes blank and numb with these thoughts in my mind. I start feeling sophisticated in that one coach. I walk to the other side of the train to go the next coach but, it is also same then I run to the other one, everything is same. I stop. I realise that I am the part of this small world in a train only. The train that goes everywhere but, takes us nowhere.
After few minutes, I reach my place. Today I am not feeling that energetic to go to the home. Today I don’t feel happy even after reaching home. Actually, I never had any real happiness. The happiness that I had earlier was just to reach home and take rest and sit in front of that idiot box and have pleasure in the night and then sleep.
I feel sad about this reality, that I never saw. I knock the door. My wife opens it and hugs me.
“How was your day, honey?”
“I am hungry.”, I said, without caring for anything.
“Go and get fresh. I am giving you the food.”
She got to know that I am not feeling good today. She knows something is wrong with me but, she doesn’t question.
I come to dining hall. I have my dinner then, at 9:30, I go straight to my bed.
I don’t know when I slept.
———– 3 ————
Mornings are always so dizzy even if we have the whole night to sleep. I wake up at 5. I get ready for the office. My wife hands me my tiffin. I rush to the metro station. Though I am not giving any attention to the time but, I know it is giving attention to me. I work day and night according to this clock that moves with its own speed. When I was a child, I used to think that I will become the master of the time when I will grow up but, now, as I have grown up, time has become my master.
As soon as I enter the metro station, I hear the gabbling of thousands of people floating in the air with different pitches. And then there is a sound of rumbling trains reaching and leaving the station. There are different groups of people, that seem to be active and at the same time, hectored by their own instinct to catch up with the time. People, sprinting for their work as if they are working for their own company. It’s the working-class people who seem to be always entrapping themselves within the running time. As soon as I approach the ticket counter, I restlessly align myself in the queue to buy token and suddenly, a breach in the queue by a vociferous lady to get a token for herself and few people starts shouting at her and some ignore, knowing that, it’s a ramshackle place. The patience to cross that checking barrier, upholds me throughout the day. Walking towards the escalator, suddenly, I hear the hundreds of trampling feet coming down from the other side asking to hustle, showing the majority of people running down just like a flock of sheep’s and trying to get ahead of the crowd. It’s our schedule now.
I reach the platform, I wait for the train. I can’t forget the truth that I was shown last night. As the train arrives, I look at the people inside the train from the glass window. All broken souls, smiling in disguise. The doors open, all of us enter it. Actually, I don’t have to make my legs move, they move along with the crowd. I feel numb today. I don’t feel the same anymore because now, I feel that I am stuck in the middle of this chaos surrounded by no one.
I again start looking at everyone. I see my reflection. People holding their gadgets on one hand and their bag on the other. This gadget generation is so succumbed in using cell phones that people have developed strange and new capabilities, like walking and texting at the same time. People are so occupied in it, sometimes it depicts as a protruding part of human flesh.
“Please mind the gap, doors will get open on the left.”
Such announcements don’t annoy me anymore. I am accustomed to many things of this mobile place. The probability of getting a seat in the metro on a long route is more, as compared on a shorter route. Here, there is a deal for the old aged peoples, sick youngster or a tired person, who seeks for a little comfort in this unstoppable spontaneous world, aren’t cared about. Nevertheless, the true concern is not getting a seat; it is all about offering it to the person who needs it more than you.
More than half of the journey passes. Two stations are left for my destination. Few minutes pass, and I reach my place. I get down from the metro and turn back to have a look on my duplicates.
I am used to this place and faces now. I don’t know any of these faces but, I can look through the opaque mask that they wear. I know this is the place which is going to take me nowhere.
In this small space, we have so many people with so many different stories but still sometimes this place seems to be unoccupied. Humans running to get ahead of each other without having the idea that “No matter how hard they try to get ahead of the crowd, eventually, they will reach the same crowd, at the end of the day.”