I looked outside my window, the ugly patchwork of brown plaster from the opposite building, stared back at me. Renovation is going on in the opposite building. Just like an old fractured person with a walker, the opposite building is also surrounded and supported by bamboo and iron poles on all three sides. High rise buildings from the next lane play peek-a-boo from behind the fractured building.
I comfortably sit with my cup of Darjeeling tea and laptop on my window seat and start writing this post.
A girl came to the opposite window. She seems to be her early twenties. She is wearing a pink crop top and denim shorts. She has a cigarette in her hand. She came and sat quietly on her window sill and started puffing. I look at her and try to read her mind, what is she probably thinking. Is she thinking about her studies, career, or lover?? Why is it so difficult to read the mind of another person?
A small boy was in another window. I know this boy, he plays with my son. The boy was standing and looking out. Maybe, he was looking out to see if any other boy had come down to play in the park. Small boys have simple thoughts. Small kids do not have too many things to worry about. They are happy with small things.
A crow was sitting on top of a pipe and trying to tear something. Birds and animals only worry about food and procreation. I was impressed with the perseverance of the crow as it was tenaciously struggling to tear something. I got bored looking at the crow after a few minutes. It was repeating the same act. I peeped into a flat right next to mine. An old lady was watching some Hindi soap opera on a giant screen. She seemed engrossed. Maybe she would learn a few tactics from the opera and apply it on her daughter-in-law.
The girl in shorts finished her cigarette and went inside. She came back after a few seconds. She was now holding a book. I tried to look at the jacket of the book and it looked familiar. Even from a little distance, I could recognize the book from its cover. It was The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. Few quotes from the book started coming back to me.
“That’s the thing about pain. It demands to be felt.”
Some pains are physical while some churn your heart, your very existence. The kinds of pain that you would love to avoid nevertheless they find a way to destroy your soul. The pains that make you feel guilty and vulnerable. You often try to deny the pain but it chases you demanding to be felt.
“Some people don’t understand the promises they’re making when they make them,”
When they break the promise you feel the pain even if you choose not to feel it because “pain demands to be felt”.
“You don’t get to choose if you get hurt in this world,…but you do have some say in who hurts you.” And we often make the wrong choices.
I almost feel like screaming and telling the girl the thoughts I had about the book but I refrain myself. Let her enjoy the book in her own sweet way. Each book appeals to each reader differently. I stopped my mind from wandering and tried to focus on the view outside. It is getting dark. Birds are flying back to their branches, kids are playing and screaming in the park below, lights are switched on.
I am fortunate to have had amazing windows throughout my life. I was born in Sikkim and spent a considerable part of my childhood there. We lived in a wooden cottage and had a big French window. From that window, I could gape at the vast expanse of the Kanchenjunga. If I go to Sikkim now, probably, I would have to pay a hefty hotel tariff for that amazing view however then I had the luxury of admiring it 24/7 free of cost. In the morning just before sunrise, the snow-capped peak of Kanchenjunga used to turn mauve in color, as the sunlight appeared its color turned to various hues of orange and then finally the snow used to shine like gold throughout the day. On a moonlit night, it used to turn bright silver. Before going to bed each night, I used to bid goodbye to Kanchenjunga that stood like a meditating saint, from my window.
However, Sikkim is a state where it rains intensely almost throughout the year. So many a days Kanchenjunga used to hide behind dense cloud or fog and play hide and seek with me. In those days I used to sit beside my window and look at the rainwater falling on the leaves. There was a small stream next to my house. During the rainy season, it used to swell up like a river. I often sat near my window and watched that stream angrily roaring during monsoon but it flew gently like a new bride during rest of the year. I especially loved watching the snowfall from my window. The snowflakes came down like soft cotton and covered the whole expanse of the small hamlet where I lived. The pine and eucalyptus tree looked as if they were huge ice cones, all covered with snow yet standing tall. The snow always highlighted the conical shapes of those trees.
My tryst with the Himalayan state ended when my Dad was transferred to Kolkata. However, the tryst with window seat continued because in my new house there was an equally interesting window. In the new house, my window was overlooking a huge lake. It was actually a bheri or artificial lake meant for fish cultivation. A part of that lake was used by an amusement park for boat rides and the remaining part was reserved by the government for fishing. The lake was so huge that the other side was not visible and it almost looked like a sea. I was happy to sit next to my window with a book and watch the vast expanse of water. The water also changed colors throughout the day with the movement of the sun. Early in the morning, the lake turned orange and the same hue returned during sunset.
I loved watching the lake during kalboishaki or summer thunderstorm. The small ripples used to turn into violent waves on those days lashing against the banks. The color also used to turn into a gloomy grey. There used to be a certain Tandava or violence in the movement of the water.
The house where I live now doesn’t have such an amazing view. Nevertheless, I love the window seat in this house. My window seat here is a place where I spend a lot of time. As I mostly work from home, my window seat also doubles up as my workstation. This is the place where I sit with my cup of Darjeeling tea and observe Mumbai rains, this is the place where I sit and read a book or just aimlessly look at the crawling traffic beneath. This is the place where I sit and cry when I am sad or talk to a friend over the telephone. This seat is now a part of my life and living. I am thankful for having such an amazing window seat.
Dear Reader, I would like to know about your window. Please let me know. Also, read about what is there outside the window of 47 of my fellow bloggers as we all take part and write at #WordsMatter blog hop hosted by Corinne, Shalini, and Parul. I received this tag from Reema D’souza at The Write World. It’s my pleasure to pass on this tag to Dr.Amrita Basu (Misra) at Health Wealth Bridge. As I already mentioned, there are 47 of us on this Blog Hop and it will be spread over 3 days – 2, 3, 4 August. Do follow the #WordsMatter Blog Hop and prepare to be surprised!