12 November, 2010

Noises on the highway

Every voice magnified around Manoj. The giggling of teenage girls. That loud laughter of that burly, hairy man. Horns from impatient cars. And Manoj was developing a headache. Yet, he kept on walking, focusing only on the path in front of him. Life’s a bitch he thought. Or perhaps a bastard, as Ragini would say. His mind was wandering on the politics at work. Those bitchy females talking with eachothe, their wavering glances, that soft whispering, and typing vehemently on miniscule chat windows. Those plotting seniors, throwing shrewd looks at him, finding faults in everything. Like some jealous mother-in-law, or a bad step-mother. Kaikai! His heart sank. Deeper than the earth’s core. His feet became heavy all of a sudden, the leather of his shoes turned into rocks. He started sweating profusely. His heartbeat accelerated. His arms turned to thick tree trunks. His eye-lids gained weight and wouldn’t lift up.

Then, ten minutes after the trucks swooshed by, the giggling teenage girls reached their school, Manoj froze up on the footpath. Clouds gathered overhead and it started raining softly. Drops of water started tracing his frozen body. As the rain increased, a Mercedes sped by him and splashed murky water on him. Chocolate poured over a Manoj-shaped yummy-looking cake.

But Manoj was fighting hard. He tried lifting his heavy hands, his rock-filled shoes, his eye-lids. He tried thinking of something pleasant. Let’s try to picture the girl-friend. But he thought of the time he wouldn’t spend with her because these bitches at work would increase his work. And a bulk of guilt rose from deep within. His heart slowly started dropping to the ground.

Just then the clouds cleared. A silence spread all over him. He was in the here and now. Those bitches cannot rule his life after work. It's just a job after all. A well-paying job which he had worked hard to get. And now that it was his, he was going to enjoy it. Damn the bitches and those bastards. The sun peeped from behind the clouds. And a pleasant feeling rose from deep within Manoj. A sort of calm obtained after years of meditation. Where stress and emotions don’t rule you, but you hold the reins on them. He thought of the superficiality of these things. The fake opinions of those bitches, those fake lives and fake views. A cool breeze blew. Cooled him, dried him. The rocks vanished, his heart found its right place, and his steps became lighter. He shrugged away the dried muck.

On reaching work, Manoj flashed his charming smile at those bitchy females, whispering softly under the hum of the air-conditioner. And then he turned away and walked towards his desk, smiling over their perplexed faces and more to-be-whispered-gossip brewing in their small minds.

5 comments:

  1. I liked the collage of Manoj's impatient mind...I expected some fun in the end whre he overcomes his impatience...

    Nywaz very much relevant in many respect :) :)

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  2. yeah its a slice of life. though the jump from the rain to the clear day is too abrupt like an advertising cut to the product window. its a good read on the whole.

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  3. I like the way you the rains and clouds have been associated with Manoj's thought process. This play of moods and weather, should have lasted a few more paragraphs (in my opinion).

    Jobs are eating up in our lives. And I strongly dislike this development, so I kinda like what the story was trying to tell me.

    My fave words in this one:

    " His feet became heavy all of a sudden, the leather of his shoes turned into rocks. He started sweating profusely. His heartbeat accelerated. His arms turned to thick tree trunks. His eye-lids gained weight and wouldn’t lift up. "

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  4. Thanks all for the comments. It's always a pleasure and eye-opener to know your views. I shall keep these in mind when working on the new one. :)

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  5. Liked it...Loved the first paragraph the most.I could actually visualize the whole scene.Particulcarly, I like this line; "Those bitchy females talking with wavering glances, whispering in ears, and typing vehemently on miniscule chat windows."

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