to walk

metros in delhi are meant to take me over the roads at a height of 30 feet in the air and down below in the basements, tunnels of the city. The only thing which saves me is the walking routes. Walking towards and on the escalators, going down hundreds of staircases into the metro station and coming up the escalators. In the city i have my routes, which sometimes cross from public parks, parks which are not safe to walk early morning and in the evening as they are known for molestation, drugs, theft. I keep walking, as sometimes my mind reaches a similar state of mind. And a state of mind you can never escape, be its of aloneness, melancholy, sadness, hollowness, emptiness or at sometimes just seeing and nothing else. i encounter dogs, injured dogs, dogs with skin diseases, with beautiful gold brown hair and just dogs coiled up in this cold weather. i consume peanuts being sold on the streets, stores selling sweets to boost my brain for a short time. i miss out on open manholes, with cracked paved pathways. I keep going. Under the stair cases in the city are tailors, book sellers.

I keep going. These days after coming back, i keep walking night and day in the city. Same places but none are same anymore. I visit them, i look at them and keep going. I stop for chicken tikka rolls, for a hot cup of chai and then i keep going.

I pause on road crossings waiting for that moment to see the people inside the SUV’s scooters, motorbikes, trucks, cars. I pause to see them looking away from me on the road. I see how last night at 4 am few of the cars had their dippers on, trucks were speeding in the fog, nothing was visible, i drove slowly and then the rest occurred and a new discovery was made. The discovery was that i paced on a very very small distance around my car when parked. it was maybe a whole distance of 20 feet. but i chose it as i was under a street light. and i realised that i could just fit myself in that space and the only thing which kept me going was pacing, back and forth, like making a line on the same stretch of twenty feet. like i could walk my entire life, thousands of kilometres on this stretch only. I wore chappals, no socks so i could enjoy the cold. My black warm pajamas withe the addidas logo on one side and a blue jacket with my scarf around my neck. My beard was open and flowing covering my neck from the cold and a light naples yellow turban to keep the head covered and warm. I kept pacing but only after five minutes of pacing did i know that i could do this as a complete exercise on small distance of 15-20 feet only.

I left from there shortly.

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