Friday, July 23, 2010

Travelling Alone

Written for a creative writing assignment. We were given a 350 word limit which is why this seems incomplete.

Travelling alone is an experience by itself. It’s an exercise in independence, of being in control of yourself and your thoughts. It is an exercise in observation. And there is a certain sense of security in being a spectator. An onlooker. Sitting there near the window, with my iPod plugged in, looking out at the people milling about on the platform, gave me a chance to create stories. To make up lives for people I don’t know.

One of the first people I noticed in the crowd was a woman in a red sari. She stood there with a big bag near her feet, wringing her hands. Her eyes kept darting around from person to person. She seemed nervous somehow. I have always felt that nervousness and fear are two of the most easily recognisable emotions. I wondered what she was nervous about.

Then I couldn’t help but notice the two people on the opposite berths who were making a big show of settling down. The girl was pretty. It wasn’t an immediately recognisable beauty but it was there. The man on the other hand, I wouldn’t give a second look to. She seemed uncomfortable with him constantly hugging and kissing her. I have never liked PDA myself. Newlyweds, I thought in my head. I made a mental prediction that they would end in one year. It’s what always happens to incompatible people.

I went back to looking at the people on the platform. The man selling newspapers, the tea vendor. And then the man who had the berth above mine came in. He placed his guitar on the berth, put his bag under the seat I was sitting on and made himself comfortable opposite me. He fascinated me. With hazel eyes, nice hair, a grey tee and blue jeans, he seemed quite the catch. He took a book out of his bag – Mein Kampf. Intellectual or pseudo intellectual, I couldn’t decide which. Musician, the guitar said.

The cogs in my head were spinning and from my safe perch I could happily create all the stories I wanted.

This was going to be quite a trip I realised...

Friday, July 16, 2010


When you lose the person you used to be, do you look forward or backward? Do you strive to hold on to that person? Do you fight to save those thoughts, those feelings, all those things you held to be so important? Or do you embrace who you have become? You feel the old you slip away like a dream, like sand through your fingers. You feel her disappear. And the next time you look in the mirror, you see a face you can't recognise. Do you let her go? Do you let accept the change that crept in so slowly, without you realising it?

Change is the only permanent thing in the world they say. Everyone says. But when the change is unwanted, how do you bring yourself to let go? When you can't trust the new person, how do you find acceptance? Because that is the most important thing, right?

Choices dictate our lives. And questions seem to rule mine.

Maybe it's time to move on. Or is it?


Anonymity is such a convenient mask to wear. There is a certain sense of security in being an unknown face. There is a sense of calm in knowing that no one knows you. Anonymity lends you the freedom to be; the freedom to do things that you might never do. There is a sense of release. It is a funny feeling, this anonymity.