“This used to be home.” She said as she pressed her hand on the dusty window. Her handprint wasn’t as small anymore as on the living room wall.
It was the first time in years she was visiting this place, she could remember it all like it was yesterday.
For the first time he had nothing to say to her, as she was already taking a walk down memory lane. She spoke about all the things she did in the place she used to call home. Words rolled down her tongue as if they had a mind of their own.
“This door right here, Mum used to mark our height with a kitchen knife. I never grew taller than my brother. The kitchen counter is where I ate breakfast for 15 years. And the lillies in the garden, dad helped me plant them. I used to sit under the staircase and read Harry Potter when it rained”.
“It all seems like all these years didn’t happen.” She said, to herself.
“Life goes on and you don’t know how much you’re missing something until you stop and notice how far you’ve come. It’s been 10 years since we left this place and now; in my new home, there’s no markings of my height on the door, or Lillies in the garden or even a staircase where I can hide and read my novels. It’s not bad, I’ve grown up and things aren’t the same anymore. Now I have breakfast on the dining table, and there’s no garden but a small gallery full of roses. I’ve a library instead of staircases and it all fits well with me now. But, when I look back, I see this and this…..used to be home.”
– Prajakta Dengale
“What is it that you’d kill to do now?” He asked as he put his phone down.
“Travel!” Squeaked she.
“Oh so you could caption that picture on the beach with ‘wanderlust’?” Joked he.
“No….” She glared before clearing her throat.
“I want to travel. Not in a way where I check-in on Facebook about my arrival and post beautiful pictures of it for the rest of the year, unlike someone here.” He grinned at the mention of it.
“But in a way where my toes bury themselves in the sand on a beach I’ve never heard of. Where I eat street food and try to fit in with the locals by trying their slang. Where I dress ridiculously and carry it with pride. Where I walk on the highway without knowing where it will take me. Where I don’t spend the nights in a five star hotel but under the sky, probably where a wild animal won’t eat me. Where I smell the surroundings and take a souvenir of every place, every street, every corner of the world I set my foot on. I want to travel so that when I finally come back, I’ll know what home smells like.”
– Prajakta Dengale
“We met at the weirdest circumstances, didn’t we?” He asked.
“Definetely” she giggled.
“And now you’re my escape from reality.” Said he.
“I don’t want to be your escape from reality” she confessed.
A ‘huh’ and a confused look was all she got.
“I mean, I don’t want you to separate me from your reality. No matter how perfect or devastating it might get. This, whatever this is, it’s not about all the good and happy things. It’s not just you and me; it’s you and me against life. I want to pass through every obstacle, celebrate every breath, take a step back when we’re overwhelmed, get down and then get back up together. I don’t just want to be living in our own fantasy; but create one with the realities that we live in.”
After a long time people! Enjoy your weekend!
“Why do people drink?” She asked as she eyed two people drinking celebratory shots on the adjacent table.
“There are many reasons.” He said.
“Like?” Her curious eyes asked.
“Those two are drinking to celebrate. The one behind you is trying to forget and the group of teenagers on my left are curious.” She followed his gaze and looked at all the three.
“So is it always for the same reason? Or do people eventually acquire a taste for alcohol?” She asked again.
“Not necessarily. A friend of mine once told me you never drink for taste, you drink for the feeling.”
“The one which burns your throat and makes you numb all in one act. It’s weird, but people drink in grief and for celebration, even for courage. For some it’s an escape from reality and for some it’s a way to accept it’s harsh truth.”
This one was on request. Hope you guys liked it.
“You should speak your mind more often.” He smiled at her.
“Me? Why?” She asked as if he just told her to act in a movie.
“Because you have so much to say.” He pointed out.
Before she could say anything, he continued “ You have thoughts and there’s something constantly on your mind. But you’re afraid to let it out. I don’t know what you’re so scared of. I’m constantly wondering what’s going on under that thick skull of your’s” he joked half-heartedly.
“ People.” She whispered.
“People? Why?” He asked.
“ I’ve never had someone say to me that you need to speak up or ask me what my opinion was. It was always the other way around. I was told to shut up and was laughed on by people for having an ‘opinion’. So why would I want to speak my mind when there’s no one there to value it or even consider it. Why would I want to make a fool out of myself for having a belief? When I know that saying something is only going to embarrass and humiliate me because I’ve something different to say, why would I do that? Our society teaches us to raise a voice against injustice but the same people kills the voices of many who have something to say. It’s not that I’m afraid of something, it’s just that I know that my voice has no value.”
I’m thinking of starting “He and She” series. Let me know what you guys think.