The Park – Part II

January 30, 2006

The story until now…

The Park sees many people come and go. So do we.
A girl is sitting on the park bench. She feels the world has been unfair to her. And she’s complaining. But who is going to listen? The one person she expects will listen, is not in the mood to listen. Or…?


(contd. from The Park – Part 1)

Nobody said a word for sometime. She was still letting her tears get the better of her self-control and he was letting his self-control get the better of him. Maintaining the stoic face, he walked for a couple of minutes until they reached the Couples’ Corner of the park. He stopped and turned to face her.

“What do you see?”

“Is that a trick question?”

“No. Seriously, tell me, what do you see?”

“I see people. In love. Sitting beside their beloved. Knowing that they will be together for eternity.”

“How many of them will really be together for eternity?”

“I don’t know.”

He smiled. He pointed out to a couple sitting across the park. The wife (presumably) was happily knitting away for a near-future arrival (presumably). The husband was watching her intently, with a look that was somewhere between admiration and awe.

“Only they will be together for all eternity.”

“How do you know?”

“It’s my job to know.”

“But they are not even talking to each other!”

“Someday, when you are old enough and wise enough, you’ll understand that communication does not need words. Tell me what do you read in his eyes?”

“I don’t know. I can’t see them from this far.”

“Then go near him and read his eyes. Go now.”

“But what if he sees me? What am I going to say to him?”

“Go now.”

She hesitated for a split second and started to move towards them. Thoughts had begun to flood her mind. Was he testing her? Or was it all a joke? Was he serious? What if the husband caught her looking at them? What would he think? Would he question her? More importantly, what was she going to tell him?

As she approached closer she could feel her tension rise. But he made no apparent move to acknowledge her in any manner – hostile or other wise. Somewhat puzzled and somewhat relaxed she decided to push further, until she was virtually sitting beside him.

She could hear the faint strains of humming. She looked around and found her; humming away as she wove the woolen strands into a concrete shape, thread by thread, knot by knot. For a moment she forgot what she was supposed to do and listened deeply to her humming. Then she remembered why she was there, and she turned to look at him.

He was now leaning back with his eyes closed and his hands behind his head. She waited for a few moments hoping he would open his eyes, so she could read them. But he did none of that. A few moments later, he opened his eyes and moved over to where his wife was sitting and put his head in her lap and closed his eyes again.

Those few moments were all she was waiting for. And what she saw chilled her to the very core.

He was blind. He had only the whites of his pupils where his eyes would have been.

She hurried back to him. He looked at her. She was shivering like an autumn leaf. He said nothing, but smiled. And he walked on.

(To be continued…)

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The Park

January 19, 2006

She sat morosely on the park bench unaware of her surroundings. She did not notice him coming. Not that she would have noticed it any other day.

He came and sat besides her making no sound or attempt to announce his presence.

After what seemed like an eternity (but was actually a few minutes) she saw him. But even then, she made no attempt to acknowledge it. She just sat there teetering on the verge of bursting into tears.

Finally, she looked at him and asked the question she already knew the answer to.

“Why are you here?”

He looked straight into her eyes. She made no attempt to look away. Rather she continued looking into his hazel eyes. Unable to take it anymore, he looked away and spoke.

“I just wanted to make sure you were alright.”

“What difference would it make to you?”

He was surprised, rather shocked, at this accusation. He had half a mind to leave but he restrained himself. This had been a long time coming. He had known it was coming. He said with all the calm he could muster.

“It would, wouldn’t it? Or else, I wouldn’t be here.”

The sarcasm in his voice wasn’t lost on her. She opened her mouth to deliver a repartee that would shut him up and closed it instantly. That was the last thing she wanted. Today she wanted him to talk. And talk he did.

“It isn’t that bad, you know. Things could have been worse.”

“Oh, really?? You keep saying that all the time? What do you know?”

“You could take things positively. Really, it could have been worse.”

“Oh, yeah? And what do you know, what’s been happening with me? Or is it one of your standard lines that you throw at damsels-in-distress?

“Why don’t you tell me what’s troubling you?”

“Why? So that you can throw me more of those standard lines? I thought you’d have known by now…”

“I can’t read minds, you know.”

The tears she’d been holding back welled up in her pretty brown eyes and clouded them. There was no use fighting them back now. And she started to cry.

It wasn’t the first time he’d seen a woman cry. Nevertheless, he was flustered. He wondered if he should reach out and comfort her. Or if he should stand back stoically and wait for the flow to ebb. Before he could transform his thought into actions, he heard words between sobs.

“Why? Why does it have to be me?”

He knew it was better not to answer that question. There was no answer to it, really. He waited for a few moments trying to decide the best course of action (or inaction, rather) But he was saved the trouble of having to make a choice, because she continued.

“I am not asking for much, am I? Tell me, is it really that difficult?”

There was no escape now. Although, he knew better than to answer the question he had no choice now. Still, there had to be some way out.

“Did someone insult you?”

“No.”

“Did someone tease you or taunt you?”

“No.”

“Did someone -”

That was as far as he got.

“Shut up, will you? I am not asking for an analysis of my mental state here. I am not asking you to counsel me. Nor am I asking you to cajole me. All I am asking is an answer to a simple question. Why is appreciation so difficult?”

He looked at her. Her big, pretty brown eyes were now red due to all the sobbing. And the decision was made.

“Come. Let’s take a walk.” And he stood up and started walking.

(To be continued…)

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Hello, World!

January 13, 2006

Testing WordPress.

I like the elegance. It makes me want to buy a domain name for myself. 🙂

Watch this space.


Wants & Needs…

January 5, 2006

Last night while I was reading I suddenly realized this:

“I don’t know what I want, but I know what I need…”

Is that what is causing all the trouble?

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