As I walked the rainy streets of Mumbai late Monday evening, I realized I could not remember the last time I had screamed. Yelled. Shouted. Snapped. Only a year ago, I was a habitual offender, and now I could not remember the last time I had screamed. What a startling revelation: My life had filled with a sadness so deep, I could no longer scream. And, what a joyous revelation: My life had taught me so much, I now realized, how futile it was to scream.
I skipped my way through the traffic maze then: Bombay in the rains is a massacre of horns, and filth, and slush and people. After thirty minutes or so of waiting, and some begging: I hailed an auto. Only to look outside and spot a devastated stranger who had been waiting for an auto just as long, and wanted to go just as far. I asked him to jump in.
My rickshaw companion turned out to be a young man from Delhi, working in a mid-sized bank on his first job, with a penchant for Bollywood movies, and Bombay nightlife. I tried not to mull over the many things that could go wrong when you give a stranger a ride: and focussed on his world view instead. He hated phones, compared our acquaintance to a scene from a movie, thanked me for saving his life, and even took my phone number.
Eventually, I was relieved to leave the rickshaw, and yet happy to show him what Bombay was once made of: big and relenting hearts, frantic yet souls with pause. I was also happy with myself for taking a chance, when faced with a choice, life is better lived in faith, than fear.
A little later I walked into a movie hall to watch Now You See Me, and the magic of it all added up. A dark and mysterious world that moved in deceiving ways, and you could never tell.
You could never tell the who’s and how’s and why’s and yet from time-to-time you need to throw your key to the bottom of a well, and take the chance.
Whether it eventually adds up or not, I knew deep down, I had taken mine.