Friday, July 29, 2011
The city I want to go back to, only exists in my head. The sepia tinted images roll on like an old film and make me smile. It is, however, unfair of me to expect it to stand still, waiting to welcome me with open arms when I am, myself, a completely different person now. If I can change, why can't my home? Because people leave, people change, things blow up. The adage 'more things change, the more they remain the same'? That's bullshit. Because NOTHING remains the same. NOTHING. Not you, not me, not my room, not my streets, not my head, not my heart. Especially not my heart. Today it is almost full, tomorrow it might resemble one of those soggy Marie biscuits one finds at the bottom of the jar and throws away with a cringe. I don’t know. I can’t tell. No one can. This time when I go, there will probably be someone waiting for me at the airport. Last time when I went, there was no one waiting and I took the Volvo bus home, smiling at the unfamiliar billboards and nodding to the compulsory Chandrabindoo song in my head. Next time when I go, I might be alone again, but I might frown at the billboards instead. Every time the plane lands amidst the humid, sprawling sea of humanity I try to close my eyes and breathe in the smell and try, try, try HARD to go back to how it was. It fails, everytime. Because friends leave, and there are empty spaces inside, there are empty spaces outside, and it is strange, really, how a crowded city can give off a scent of utter, desolate loneliness. I try to hug it hard, whisper comforting words, tell it that it's going to be okay, that I'll come back, that my friends will come back, that the desolate stretches will fill with laughter again. It doesn't work. Because whatever else my city might be, stupid is not one of them. Writing about it has become more and more difficult. I struggle to find the right words, the exact phrases. I struggle to fit it with the picture city in my head, long after that photo has been torn, shredded and fed to the bugs. English is a goddamn frustrating language because it hasn't come up with a word for obhimaan. My city, I think, obhimaan korechhe amar opor. And I can't blame her for that.