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Waking up with a weird dream, I am not sure if I had any memories of what I had dreamed of. It was frightening I believe. I was lying in bed and random thoughts started coming to my mind, being a naive who was alone for a long time with a wish to be accompanied by someone special.
Was my fate going to change?
Was anything going to happen new?
The turn my life had taken
I don’t know what for was that clue
I started thinking what if she would get up and the life she had, was new and given by me, might be she would love me for that or her parents or any kin. I know it’s crazy then to think like that but well, I guess I am too naive seeking someone to love and to be loved by. I have hopes and trust in almighty god. But such thoughts would not last longer for any girl.
With such stupid thoughts, I got up and first thing I always do is looking for the time in my phone. Damn! It was just after midday. I rushed up from the bed and I saw another phone nearby, the one belonged to the girl in the hospital. I pressed any key to see what was on it and well, there was nothing. Phone was completely discharged.
I was worried about my college but important was the hospital; I had to check with the hospital if the parents of the girl had arrived. I bathed quickly, got ready with fresh new clothes and trod quickly with long steps.
“Excuse me, my name is Aakash Arora. I am the guy who brought the girl who was in the ICU last night. I wanted to know how she is now.” I asked the reception, the entirely new face and she was elder to the one at night. The one at night was younger, slim body, fair complexion and long nails. The one then in the morning was little fatter, older with wrinkles next to her eyes. She was having glasses on with thread going to back of her neck. Her glasses were on her nose tip looking like they were about to fall. She took her heavy head up to see me few seconds after I enquired her. She looked at me taking her head up through almost her nose tip.
“Hmm, wait. What name you mentioned of the patient?” She asked looking at her papers or files.
“Her name is Purvi. I brought her here last night and her parents talked to Dr. Rakesh who is taking care of this case I suppose.” Sounding too polite and telling her as I know but not more than what she did.
“Oh yea, she is still in ICU. Her father is also in the hospital. Go to the second floor, walk towards the eastern end of the building.” She directed me quite well pointing to the stairs and using her hands as gesture.
As I reached near the ICU, I saw a man and a boy there. I treaded really slow with both hands in my back pockets. They were silent and dismal. I went near to them and muttered, “Are you here for Purvi?”
The boy looked at me and nodded, “yes. Who are you? Are you the one who brought my sister to the hospital timely?”
I was feeling weird then, “Yes, I did. I am sorry for the accident.”
“Yea, we can’t control what is destined but thank you so much for bringing her here.”
“That was my moral duty. That’s ok. How is she anyway? Is she alright now?” I asked quickly.
“I am not sure. Doctors say she is still in critical condition.” He told me that with grief.
“She will be alright, I am sure. Please don’t worry. Didn’t your parents come?”
“Yes they have. They are in the ICU with my sister. Doctor didn’t allow us all inside at once. I have seen her though.”
“That’s good. I feel relieved now.” Taking out the phone of his sister out of my pocket and handing over to him, “this is your sister’s phone. It’s totally discharged.”
“Thank you for this. What is your name anyway?” He asked while I was just about to walk away. “I am Aakash. Nice to meet you. Take care of your sister.” I shook hand as he offered me for. I smiled and got back to my room.
While in the way, I realized I hadn’t even asked his name, I hadn’t even seen her parents. I thought I was being rude or it was good not to show the saviour behind her living conditions. Well, I knew I would go to see her again. I had to know if she was alright. I had my lunch as per the chore and went to the college to attend the second half of the day after lunch.
All day I kept on discussing about this with my mates and thinking about her. I hadn’t met her parents as well. After my college, I went straight to the hospital with my bag. I went to the second floor directly and saw they were there. Her brother was talking to a man, his father probably while looking straight at me. It was suggesting to me like he was introducing me to his father but from distance.
I greeted with her parents and asked how she was. They told me she was getting better. I sighed with a relief and told her dad that everything would be alright and so, be patient. Her father hoped for the same. They all thanked me for saving their kin for which I was feeling quite happy. I came back from hospital to my room. I wanted to study but I knew I wouldn’t be able to and so that happened. I was fond of reading newspaper but never able to remember what was happening around the world. I thought to read the paper but I couldn’t focus on that either. All those crazy thoughts about her health were going on in my head. There was a stream of electric current I could feel through my body flowing within less than a second. The thoughts were haunting me as what if she would die. But I was also thinking – no she won’t.
That little period of my life
Haunted me to hell
Though everything was bad
I could just hope for well
That became chore of my life for that little period of time. For two more days I kept going there to see how she was. During all that time, her classmates and friends kept coming to see her as well. She had improved significantly when her family decided to take her from there and shift in their own city or possibly home so that they could take better care of her. That was the sixth day after the accident. I went to see them as usual and I came to know that they were going to shift her. I was feeling weird loneliness, like someone mine was going away from me. I was happy as well to know two things – firstly, she was getting better and secondly, she was going to go home where she would be getting better care.
On the seventh day, they decided to shift her. I felt as left behind. The whole family was there so they were there to take decisions for their child. I knew this but I wished something more, I was expecting a little bit more of importance. I made up my mind that I won’t go to see off any of them. I just started trying to move on with my life. Whole day in my college I kept thinking about this.
I came back from the college to my room and I didn’t want to go to the hospital but at the same time, I also wanted to ascertain about the health of the girl. I thought to phone Sweetie, the only friend of the girl, Purvi who was victim of the road accident, to speak with to know more about Purvi.
I immediately took out my phone and went to recent calls but then I realized that the phone call I made to Sweetie’s home was through Purvi’s phone. I hadn’t had saved her contact in my phone book. In fact, I had no contact information of any of the member of the family or the friends of Purvi. I didn’t even know which college she was in actually. I had seen many of her mates visiting her but I never introduced to any of them. I had never seen even Sweetie. The reason I knew Purvi’s mates were visiting because I saw few new faces talking to her family almost every day in the hospital. I never stayed at hospital for too long as her family was always there.
A chapter of my life
Began and ended soon
Why I had that part
Life went out of tune
With few more days passed by, I kept thinking why I had been introduced to all those people, why I had that part of my life where a chapter begun but ended swiftly not lasting for even a week. There must be more to it but it was too difficult to guess without going into the past.
Time started to fly; I got busy in my life again, the life which was same, boring, full of loneliness and sadness. Regular college and practicals started. After few days I have exams. We get leave for about two weeks so that we can prepare for the exams. I am not too studious to start utilizing those leaves, preparation leaves, PL, as in short we call it, for studies from the very first day of it. In fact, I am the one who starts preparing two or three days before exams and I have been getting good grades, good enough for someone who started his studies two days earlier than the exams.
I have spent lot of these days of PL doing nothing. I keep thinking about the accident and the girl sporadically as well. Few of my friends asked me for the update about her health and I never had a definite answer. I was myself wondering about her health. In those days, my routine was to go to my college which had excellent reading room. It was a big hallway connected with a huge seminar hall. Students used to study there and so I used to go and sit there with books open.
That was the same ordinary day for me when I went there and sat on a table in hallway. Students used to come there not just from my college but from different ones as well which were in the same campus. In fact, people from other nearby colleges from different campuses used to come and study there as well.
I was sitting with my books open albeit not looking into them at all. I suddenly glanced at this girl. Her face was so similar to Purvi. I had never seen her afore in my campus. I guess she was from other college. At first, I thought may be that was like Bollywood movies where either actor or actress sees the counter partner in every face and they know they are in love. I was wondering if I was in love with that girl. I kept staring her today particular and thinking about Purvi. I knew she was not her and I had no courage anyway to talk to her. The reason I was sure because she had not a single scar and she was looking like absolutely fine, like nothing had ever happened to her. I believed that there are exactly seven people on this earth of exactly similar face and body make. I didn’t talk to her on that basis as well but inside, I had no courage to be upfront and speak to her. I didn’t want to make me look like I was trying to woo her.
I went to the same locus, same time very next day. I went to see this girl again who looked like Purvi. I kept waiting and I couldn’t see her. I saw another group of four girls. One of them was really cute. They also came to study but well, they weren’t studying actually. They were gossiping quite loudly. I kept on staring this one girl and I knew she knew me staring at her. She was really cute. She was childish, white, skinny, average heighted with long black hair. Every day I went on the same spot to see those four girls and they always knew I was concentrating more on them than my books. That was fun. I still always had a question in my heart where was Purvi though. How Sweetie looked like and where she would be as well? My brain was rambled on with so many things.
Days went by, exams started and one by one, I kept appearing for each of them. I was waiting eagerly to return back to my home which was about 1700 kilometres away from the city I was living in. It was Ambala Cantonment, Ambala Cantt and I was way too excited to go back. We lived in defence colony in Ambala and I always loved Pune as well for the education but not much for the loneliness. Pune has always been serving many students for years and known as oxford of the east. I kept on appearing for each exam and time went by.
This is the last day before vacation and I finished with my practical exams really good. I was so excited that I didn’t even remove my lab-coat after finishing the last practical exam. I had that train next day. I always loved being in trains, more than anything else although it was like more than one day journey. You got to eat in train, sleep in train, you can walk through that long ferry which was like a snake running through the places. I packed my baggage and repacked it because I forgot to put few things that I should have kept in first just to have proper packing. My bags were all ready before dinner and I again went to the same park after dinner listening music after long time. There was no bench vacant there. I kept roaming around and finally sat on the grass. Moon was full, sky was clear. It was amazing to see the sky. We didn’t need any street light. Everything was naturally lit up. I kept on imagining my trip back to home.
On the next day I reached station and saw that not just me but few other my classmates and lot of other students of same or different colleges were also going to board the same train. I met the known people and it was a pleasant journey. I had already got the seat reserved by paying in advance booking it couple of months ago. I reached back home and spent my vacation with my parents and younger brother and a sister. She was the youngest child of the home and the only daughter. We all loved her a lot.
Days are passing
So this good time
My mother’s caressing
Music of wind chime
It was so good. I was spending all my vacation with so much of fun, so unaware of my coming days. Everything was going to change in next few weeks or months and I was happy just being home. Actually, I was so alone then that I couldn’t expect anything worse. I knew that the worst was to be alone. The worst was to see people with friends and their partners and finding you craving for that.
Few days were left before I had to get back. I saw my friends who were back or who were living in the nearby cities or the same city. I wasn’t too friendly with them in my schooldays either. I was like little Aakash living somewhere in the class in school time. I expected better from college life but nothing great had happened till then. You never know what next moment could bring you. I was waiting for something exciting to happen and the most exciting thing happened to me in my life till then was saving a girl’s life that I never saw again.
There was a long long life waiting for me ahead and I never thought like that ever. I had never been taught to be optimistic about life as ups and downs are the part of life. Nothing in nature is straight, it’s all wavy yet everything is perfect and balanced.
That was the day when I had to get back to Pune. I was again excited about travelling in train, not so much in Pune. Actually, I didn’t like living in there because I had always these feelings that this city gave me so much of sadness, I shouldn’t be there anymore. But I had to get back to the college and I was excited anyway about my journey. My mom packed me with lot of snacks, lot of stuff to eat so that when I feel hungry, I can eat and hence that can evoke me of her and the family.
My dad came with me to drop me till the station. He was talking to me about my health and education. He was telling me to do well in this new session and he always said, “Eat healthy. Eat lot of fruits. Never think or care about money while spending for healthy food. If you fall sick, you will have to spend the money on the medicines anyway.” He went somewhere, probably to the enquiry office and came back after sometime saying, “Train is on time.”
“Have you checked it”, I asked him.
“Yes I did. Call us when you reach there.”
“Ok. Yes I will for sure.”
We kept silent for fifteen more minutes and the announcement for the train came up which I was about to board. They said train was coming shortly. I asked my father to leave but he said he could stay for a little longer. After few minutes, I was in the train but standing on the door with my luggage beneath my seat. I was talking to my dad before the train departed the station.
He was gone then. I didn’t think about this journey at all. I was envisaging myself reaching back to Pune to join my college again and get back to the same boring life. With all those thoughts in my mind, I went on my seat and sat down. It was a 3 tier arrangement in Indian trains which means a coach divided in nine sections and each section will have eight seats making total ninety two in each coach of a train of same kind. In the section I was seated in, all the people and they were more than seven were not interacting a lot.
I sat down with no thoughts what could happen in future. There are so many colors in life and sadness is one of those. I just sat and waited for my destination. This was more than thirty two hours of journey I had to do.
Songs of changes were too silent
Breeze was so soft to listen or feel
I was happy with little things I had
New threads were being reeling on reel